Retail development at the Hingham shipyard redevelopment is proliferating as six major tenants open for business over the next month. North Carolina-based grocer Fresh Market plans to open a 23,500-square-foot store at The Launch at Hingham Shipyard on April 7.
Retail activity at the Hingham shipyard is proliferating as six major tenants will open for business over the next month.
North Carolina-based grocer Fresh Market plans to open a 23,500-square-foot store at The Launch at Hingham Shipyard on April 7.
“We’re excited this is their first Massachusetts location and we think Fresh Market is going to bring great energy to the center,” said Leslie Cohen, vice president at developer Samuels & Associates of Boston.
The grocery store’s opening is a significant milestone for the mixed-use redevelopment. Store leasing has been slower than expected because of retrenchment by national retailers.
The Old Navy store will host a grand opening on Saturday featuring food samples, a disc jockey and children’s prizes. The chain’s older store on Route 3A closed Tuesday.
Like Fresh Market, Panera Bread will also open on April 7. Pizzapalooza, Eastern Mountain Sports and Unleashed by Petco, a new smaller store format by the San Diego chain, will open later in April, Cohen said.
Fresh Market was founded in 1982 in North Carolina and now operates 95 stores in the eastern U.S.
CEO Craig Carlock said its stores offer an adventure for the senses, with pyramids of colorful produce and the aroma of 30 varieties of daily-baked bread wafting down the aisles.
The company emphasizes fresh produce and custom cuts of meat, with a certified meat cutter on duty during store hours.
Fresh Market will compete in Hingham with the 40,000-square-foot Whole Foods Market at Derby Street Shoppes and the locally owned Fruit Center Marketplace in Hingham Square.
“Our store is going to be smaller than Whole Foods and so it’ll be a little bit easier to get in and get out,” Carlock said. “They’re more ‘restaurant-ish’ and go after the natural and organic customers than we do.”
The Fresh Market grand opening is at 9 a.m. on April 7, with food demonstrations and samples continuing throughout the week. The store is still accepting applications for 90 staff positions, Carlock said.
The Hingham store is the third of 12 that Fresh Market will open in 2010. The privately held chain will continue to look for new locations in New England, Carlock said.
This spring’s new arrivals at The Launch follow the 2009 openings of Bed, Bath & Beyond and the Patriot Cinemas, and the January arrival of a Curves fitness studio.
New stores will continue to open on a rolling schedule throughout the spring and summer. About 30,000 square feet, or 15 percent of the retail space, is still available, Samuels & Associates’ Cohen said. Another 30,000 square feet of office space is also on the market.
Patriot Ledger writer Steve Adams may be reached at email@example.com.