Trader Joe’s to open in LIC early next year

The grocery store will be opening in the base of a Long Island City condo

Photo illustration of Ryan Serhant and  22-43 Jackson Avenue (Getty, Trader Joe's) 
Photo illustration of Ryan Serhant and 22-43 Jackson Avenue (Getty, Trader Joe's)

Trader Joe’s has scheduled the opening of its second store in Queens for the first quarter of 2021, sources tell The Real Deal.

The specialty grocery chain is taking 17,000 square feet in the base of Circle F’s 70-unit condo in Long Island City at 22-43 Jackson Avenue. The deal, but not the opening date, was first reported in December.

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The length and terms of the lease have not been announced. However, a source said the agreement was hammered out last year. In February, Trader Joe’s got the green light to open a store on the other side of the East River, under the Ed Koch Queensboro Bridge.

Trader Joe’s, which declined to comment, has 13 stores in New York City, including the other Queens location in Rego Park.

As Covid-19 has hammered other national retailers, leading some to stop paying rent, grocery chains have held steady or gained as fewer Americans eat out.

The store’s landlord will be a condo, dubbed the Prime LIC, which is slated to launch sales this summer with celebrity broker Ryan Serhant’s team at the helm.

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Serhant said he expects the grocer to be a big draw for buyers.

“There is a huge need,” he said, referring to the paucity of grocery stores in Long Island City.

The Prime will be launching into a market flooded with new development units and suffering from a pandemic-related drop in sales over the past few months.

In Queens, new development condos make up a majority of the borough’s sales market in the $500,000 to $1 million price range.

In Long Island City, the median sales price of a new development condo is $901,000. In the second quarter, there were 77 new development sales, down from 84 in the first quarter. But compared to the second quarter of last year, when there were just 29 deals, transactions are up 165.5 percent.

Prices for the units at the Prime start at $675,000. The building’s projected sellout is nearly $79 million.

Write to Erin Hudson at ekh@therealdeal.com