Trader Joes Confirms The Woodlands as First Houston-Area Location

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Coming soon to The Woodlands: More water taxis. Oh, and a Trader Joe's.
Sorry, Inner Loopers. Consider your bubble burst. Trader Joe's confirmed this morning that its first Houston-area grocery store will be located at the Woodlands Crossing Shopping Center in... The Woodlands.

This news runs contrary to earlier speculation that the California-based grocery chain had set its sights on redeveloping the old Alabama Theater on West Alabama near Shepherd. That plan may still come to fruition in the coming months.

Upon reports last week that Whole Foods Market is opening a Katy location at Fry Road and Grand Parkway, I heard many a Woodlands resident complain that Whole Foods still hadn't opened a location up north. To which I would like to say, "Shut it, Woodlands."

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Still waiting for one of these in Houston, you guys.
The northern suburb will not only house the first Trader Joe's in the area, but is also home its own Central Market and not one but two Hubbell & Hudson stores -- the only Hubbell & Hudson stores, I might add. The Houston Press named the independent grocery chain Best Grocery Store in our 2011 Best of Houston® awards, but the rest of Houston has yet to get any Hubbell & Hudsons of our own.

And frankly, I'd rather have a Hubbell & Hudson in Houston before a Trader Joe's. Since The Woodlands is so good at these sorts of things lately, maybe they can toss us a bone.



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51 comments
Sschurmann
Sschurmann

Traitor Joe's -- the Woodlands?????  Seriously????

Jesse Duvall
Jesse Duvall

Apparently you have never shopped at a Trader Joe's. And by the way, Whole Foods is notorious for everyone from the founder to employees for posting negative comments about the competition. TJ wipes out WF in competition. 

Matteo
Matteo

We don't have a Central Market in The Woodlands, actually.  Far from it.  It's just a nice HEB.

I have to drive to Waugh and West Alabama at Kirby to shop at Whole Foods.  I've considered not patronizing Whole Foods until they open a location in The Woodlands . . . beyond where the world ends and dragons roam.

Allnaturaljo
Allnaturaljo

you obviously don't shop at Hubbel, its a designer store, serious natural food junkies don't shop there, WE drive to WF Kirby!

Tdtobaben
Tdtobaben

It is the place to be up here! :) no really for so long we didn't have these type of things.. all we need now is a Nordstroms and I will never need to leave a 10 Mile radius.

Harriet Davidson Bingham
Harriet Davidson Bingham

LOOKING FOR 1980 GRADUATES FROM DULLES HIGH SCHOOL....MISSOURI CITY, TX PATTIE WHITE..DARLA FARRELL, KATHY SPARTMEN,,,,,,,,,,FROM MRS. "C"  GROUP......HAVING PARTY FOR KAREN JO 

H_e_x
H_e_x

I wonder why Whole Foods always gets shit on but never Trader Joes. Not to say Whole Foods doesn't deserve it, because it does, but what makes Traders Joes so much better? It's just another soulless national chain taking space in a soulless suburb surrounded by other soulless national chains. 

TXCowgirl05
TXCowgirl05

It's not Central Market, it's just plain old HEB. I would really love to have WHole Foods here instead honestly, but will settle for Trader Joe, in the hopes that maybe WHole Food will reconsider ;)

Jessica J.
Jessica J.

This made me laugh, mostly because my mom's first response after celebrating briefly was "Now if we could just get a Whole Foods".

I think it's a smart location - and H&H has proven that TW can support the upscale market concept.

Kookoomaki
Kookoomaki

Makes perfect sense. The pilots and flight attendants residing in the Woodlands will make sure they stay in business.

Mai Pham
Mai Pham

Just thinking of all the great condiments I could buy is making me really wish I lived closer to The Woodlands. Not to mention the great produce, nuts, cheap wine, and pre-made frozen fancy foods. Y'all are lucky up there. If someone from Trader Joe's is reading this, keep your eyes on Sugar Land! Lots of families and homes you could make happy.

Michael Bell
Michael Bell

First they get a Grammy Album of the Year based on how much it sucks to live there and now this?!?

big noise from winnetka
big noise from winnetka

Great goodlyamooga, I think the author of piece is 'all atwitter.'  Atwitter is a condition common in Europe but seldom seen in the U.S., and unheard of in Texas. 

mollusk
mollusk

Meh - every other location they've got's outside the Loop, outside the Beltway, outside Harris County, too...

Mery888
Mery888

This just in...The Woodlands is getting the space shuttle.I <3 The Woodlands and I'm looking forward to TJ's opening soon. :)

Jasonofthesea
Jasonofthesea

Geez, little bit of 'tude against the woodlands!

Gigi
Gigi

The Woodlands is a great area with a loyal customer base. Excuse you nay-sayers!! It's a tight knit community and we are very supportive, appreciative, and friendly to all of the businesses here. Any worthy business will make a good choice in building up in the best burbs around Houston!

mikhastur
mikhastur

dammit, dammit, dammit, dammit, DAMMIT!

Terry Alexander
Terry Alexander

As far fetched to some of you as it may seem, the decision is very smart indeed. With the amazing success of Hubbel and Hudson it is almost a given that Trader Joes will be successful also. It sort of allows TJ to branch out but be safe also. Yes you Inner Loop whiners will most likely get one soon but until then give us Woodlandites a little credit for appreciating diversity in life also.TA

Kelli
Kelli

Son of a bitch!!!! The Woodlands?  Why should they get the first one?  Guess I'll never be going there.  That would require me to get on the freeway and you know, as an inner looper I never get on the freeway unless my life depends on it. :)

Leila Jane
Leila Jane

SOO Excited!Yes I will be driving "all the way" to the Woodlands to get my Joe-Joes!Also, TJs is NOT expensive at all, their pricing is comparable to Kroger or HEB. Definitely much less expensive Whole Paycheck.. errr Whole Foods.

Sharon Worster
Sharon Worster

We have a Central Market in The Woodlands? WHERE?????????

Kyle
Kyle

"Shut it, Woodlands" is basically my mantra for everything.

Gil Velasquez
Gil Velasquez

What a sad day indeed - this shows the ignorance of their site selection committee.  The Woodlands?

Nicholas L. Hall
Nicholas L. Hall

There's something going on at the Alabama Theatre. There are signs of construction/demo in the back lobby area. I've strongly considered "finding an alternative entrance" just to get one last look at the place before whoever eventually changes it.

Craigley
Craigley

This is the poke in the eye with a sharp stick that all the inner loop snobs deserved.

Love,

A reformed inner loop snob

Albert Nurick
Albert Nurick

C'mon up and visit.  You don't even need a passport.

Allnaturaljo
Allnaturaljo

I love Whole Foods, I live in The Woodlands and still drive into town 2 times a month to shop there. Whole Foods WILL NEVER move to The Woodlands. We have SO MANY rules and restrictions that Whole Foods just wont go for it! makes me say but I am not afraid to drive. I dont think TJ has the same quality as Whole Foods but I will give it a try :)

Sharon Worster
Sharon Worster

I'm saying the same thing! Where is Whole Foods?

Craigley
Craigley

Well she ain't too atwitter about her suburban readers of the HP, aka The Greensheet's cohort, now is she?.

Craigley
Craigley

So True.  But the price of Rent will ensure you get the Big Boys.  Part of the fun of the "inner-loop" experience is the Mom and Pop joints who can't pay high rent.

Just be careful up there.  It's starting to look like Cupertino.  

Kelli
Kelli

Oh shut it Woodlands.

Craigley
Craigley

you telling me you can't find a place in the city to buy cheap wine and walnuts?

Craigley
Craigley

"Underground Corporate" is not exactly "Diversity in Life", which is why I think The Woodlands make far more sense than any location in Houston.

Katharine Shilcutt
Katharine Shilcutt

I might not like it, but I think The Woodlands is a smart neighborhood for TJ to start out in. Plenty of money, plenty of folks eager for new grocery stores, plenty of the types of folks that buy your typical TJ groceries...

Ali
Ali

I don't think it's quite so stupid. It's grown so much and obviously has a high-ish end clientele that can afford TJ pricing. 

I'd like to see one open inside the loop, but I don't think the Woodlands was a bad choice from a business perspective.

Kyle
Kyle

Send urban explorer Secret Squirrel. He loves these types of covert photography projects.

Gil Velasquez
Gil Velasquez

My dad was on the team that did the work on the major renovation to put the Bookstop in.  I'm going to storage and see if I can find such an entrance in the plans.

Jesse Duvall
Jesse Duvall

Maybe you don't need a passport, but you need to pack a lunch and pack a gun because you go through some dangerous country. And how can you call inner loop people snobs? I live in the Memorial outer loop and I think it is amusing inner loopers thing outer loopers are unsophisticated red necks. Inner loopers just don't get out much. It is uinlikely they will trek to the Woodlands to reach Trader Joe's, I sure won't risk it, it is about an hour and a half away. Three hours travelling time and risking death on the freeway to a grocery store is ridiculous. It suspect if it weren't for the meddling nags at the Greater Houston Preservation Alliance, or whatever those bores with too much free time call themselves call themselves, TJ would have chosen the old, run down Alabama Theatre to refurbish and improve the tatty area. That isn't likely to happen now. Houston, remember who drove Trader Joe to the Woodlands. Congratulations to the Woodlands. The Woodlands sounds like a upscale and lucky place, just too far from anything to be a pratical place to live unless you work out there.

Gigi
Gigi

Don't hate on us just because we're beautiful b...

Maggie_Mae
Maggie_Mae

We've got Spec's Mother Ship--home of the best & cheapest selection of beer, wine, liquor & fine food.  Revival Market is in my own neighborhood. The Montrose Whole Paycheck is worth a visit because of the wine & beer bar--if only they'd install cup holders on the carts. And Phoenicia finally opened up downtown.

I'll be glad to see a Trader Joe's inside the loop but will hardly starve in the meantime.....

Albert Nurick
Albert Nurick

Unless something has changed since I shopped there yesterday, the store is HEB Woodlands Market, a hybrid between a regular HEB and Central Market.  A real Central Market is something I'd love to have nearby, but this is certainly better than nothing.

Sharon Worster
Sharon Worster

It has the 'food to go' section and a few Central Market canned/packaged products. I've been shopping there since the day it opened and I'm here to tell ya, It AIN'T no Central Market!!! :)

Sharon Worster
Sharon Worster

Exactly! We don't all want Happy Meals up here! IMHO there is nothing ignorant about them coming anywhere in Texas!

Caroline
Caroline

"Can afford TJ pricing"? TJ is dirt cheap! It allowed me to eat healthy gourmet food on a grad student's budget. I cannot wait for a TJ to open and will happily drive to the Woodlands if that is the one that opens first. Even with the cost of gas I'd be saving money over what the same items would cost at Whole Foods or Central Market!

Katharine Shilcutt
Katharine Shilcutt

Bah! I was certain it was a CM. Oh well. You're STILL getting a TJ.

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