Add another food hall to the Bay Area’s ever-growing ranks: Uptown Station, the upcoming Uptown Oakland-style market project, has found its first tenant. Newberry Market will be the anchor tenant in the 400,000-square-foot retail and office space just above 19th Street BART station, which is currently being redeveloped by Lane Partners and Gensler architects.
The seven-story building where Sears lived for nearly 70 years was bought by Lane Partners for $ 25 million last November. Since the project was announced late last year, there has been a lot of speculation about potential tenants, including the possibility that a Silicon Valley tech giant (cough, cough, Google) could track down most of the office space and create something like an economic rebirth in the region.
The market, which is named after the now closed Newberry department store, which was once next door, will be at least 20,000 square meters on the ground floor and, in addition to a butcher with a comprehensive service, will also offer products, ready meals and staple groceries -by-the-slice window, cafe and flower shop. They’ll also be selling a “carefully curated” selection of beer and wine at different prices (read: You can probably buy box wine AND non-arsenic wine there).
Clearly intended for a rising crowd of wealthy young technicians as well as current Uptown Oakland residents and hungry commuters, the market originated from Oakland hospitality veterans Ann Thai and Loren Goodwin. The partners have been part of the food and beverage scene in Oakland in various roles for years: Goodwin previously cooked at Chez Panisse and worked as a private chef for years, while Thai owns an event planning company. They also added Allison Ball to the team as a consultant GM to develop the “market” part of the concept. In doing so, they rely on Ball’s role in the growth of Bi-Rite, SF’s favorite place to buy $ 5 tomatoes.
Indeed, Newberry Market will take a page from the book of artisanal grocery store concepts like the Ferry Building, Bi-Rite and Market Hall in Oakland’s Rockridge neighborhood, including a Ferry Building-like main corridor through the center of the market called the Paseo . ” No word yet on which vendors will occupy the remaining 30,000 square feet of retail space on the first floor, although Lane Partners’ original proposal included a hilarious and completely hypothetical list of who’s who in the trendy San Francisco food scene, in vendors as Mission Chinese were called, Blue Bottle and Josey Baker Bread.
Regardless of their potential neighbors, Thai and Goodwin are focused on keeping things in the market affordable and accessible, with an emphasis on local vendors. “Our goal is to be the best option for people who live and work in the East Bay,” says Goodwin. “Just steps from the new BART station in Uptown provides convenient access to healthy food for commuters and the people who live and work around us.”
The store is slated to open in autumn 2016, which will hopefully coincide with the installation of additional tenants on the ground floor. The office space on the upper floor should be ready in 2017.