Back in 2015 Whole Foods anounced plans to open a store in Jacksonville Beach.
At the time, Whole Foods told our partner The Florida Times-Union it had signed a lease for 35,000 square feet of space in Pablo Plaza at 1822 S. Third St. and intended to open the store in early 2021.
Because the space is smaller than the typical Whole Foods store there was speculation that Whole Foods might opt to bring its more budget-friendly Whole Foods 365 to Jacksonville Beach.
But now that speculation appears moot. Yahoo Finance reports Whole Foods is scrapping the 365 store format, converting the existing ones into regular Whole Foods stores by the end of the year. It was unclear what would happen to any planned 365 stores.
Whole Foods spokeswoman Jamie Forrest declined to answer any of WJCT’s questions about its planned Jacksonville Beach store or its current Mandarin location, saying, “We don’t have any additional information to share at this time.” WJCT News was unable to confirm whether Whole Foods still intends to carry through with its expansion into Jacksonville Beach.
After the original plan for the Jacksonville Beach store was announced, Austin-based Whole Foods was acquired by Amazon for $13.7 billion.
Amazon has a large presence in Jacksonville with two fulfillment centers, a delivery station and a warehouse that employs thousands.
Last year our partner the Jacksonville Daily Record reported that Whole Foods planned a renovation worth nearly $643,000 at its Mandarin store located at 10601 San Jose Blvd.
But an employee at the Mandarin store, who spoke on the condition of remaining anonymous, told WJCT News that the renovation has been scaled back from what was announced.