Mayor Emanuel Joins Whole Foods Market to Open Company’s New Midwest Distribution Center

Mayor Emanuel at Whole Foods Distribution Center
(Source: Chicago Mayor’s Office / Twitter)

Centrally-Located Hub in the Pullman Neighborhood Will Support More Than 60 Whole Foods Markets Across the Midwest and Canada

CHICAGO—(ENEWSPF)—January 9, 2018

By: Rosemary Piser

Yesterday, Mayor Rahm Emanuel joined Whole Foods Market to open the company’s new 140,000 square foot distribution center in the Pullman neighborhood. The new distribution center will allow the natural and organic grocer to better serve its 26 Chicagoland locations as well as an additional 34 locations across the Midwest and Eastern Canada.

At the opening, Mayor Emanuel said, “Whole Foods’ decision to move its Midwest distribution center to Chicago is a vote of confidence in the city and another sign of the economic renaissance underway in the historic Pullman community. The new distribution center, coming on the heels of new Whole Foods Markets in Englewood and Hyde Park, is bringing more investment and opportunity to Chicago communities.”

Whole Foods Market Midwest Regional President, Michael Bashaw said, “The Pullman neighborhood is an ideal location for our new distribution center. The proximity to major transportation and other business needs will help us to better serve our customers and support our stores in the Midwest and Ontario. We are now closer to the majority of our stores, shortening delivery time, and, in the long term, we have plenty of additional space for expansion to support growth.”

The new distribution center sits on 16.5 acres in the historic Pullman neighborhood, and features a fresh salad bar, outdoor grilling space and patio, and an equipped exercise room for Team Members to enjoy. The facility employs 100 Team Members, who moved from the company’s previous 5-acre facility in Munster, Indiana.

Approximately 20 percent more electrically efficient than the old center, it is estimated that the new Whole Foods Market distribution center will save more than 1.3 million kilowatts per year and more than $150,000 annually due to measures such as natural refrigerants, occupancy light sensors, high-efficiency interior and exterior lighting, thermosiphon oil cooling, and redistribution of refrigeration waste to heat floors.

The Pullman location has increased access to major transportation arteries, which allows Whole Foods Market stores to replenish products faster, ensuring shoppers’ favorite foods are always available. The facility is expected to move an average of 200,000 cases each week to Whole Foods Market locations in Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska and Iowa, and the Canadian province of Ontario.

Originally one of the sites for the production and assembly of Pullman Railway Cars in the late 1800s, the Whole Foods Market distribution center joins two of its trusted suppliers, Method and Gotham Greens, in the dynamically changing neighborhood.

The new center is among more than $225 million in public and private projects moving forward in Pullman, including:

  • the community’s 2015 designation as a National Monument by the U.S. Park Service for its historic affiliation with industry, land use planning and workers’ rights;
  • the 2015 construction of Method Products’ first U.S. factory and Gotham Green’s rooftop greenhouse;
  • the 2014 construction of the $135 million Pullman Park retail development; the current construction of a $15 million community center; and
  • improvements to dozens of historic homes and other properties.

Ninth Ward Alderman Anthony Beale said, “This Whole Foods distribution center will help the Pullman/Roseland area continue to reclaim its history as a thriving hub for manufacturing and innovation.  As this facility grows it will add even more jobs and have an even stronger impact throughout the 9th ward.”

About Whole Foods Market®
For 39 years, Whole Foods Market has been the world’s leading natural and organic foods retailer. As the first national certified organic grocer, Whole Foods Market has over 470 stores in the United States, Canada and United Kingdom. Whole Foods Market was named “America’s Healthiest Grocery Store” by Health magazine and has been ranked one of the “100 Best Companies to Work For” in America by FORTUNE magazine for 20 consecutive years. To learn more about Whole Foods Market, please visit media.wfm.com.

Source: www.cityofchicago.org