Does a Whole Foods lead the way for gentrification of a neighborhood? There are plans for a Whole Foods to be the catalyst that transforms Englewood, one of Chicago's most dangerous neighborhoods-- and outside investors are on board. Via a partnership with the city of Chicago and locally-based DL3 Realty, Whole Foods will anchor a five-acre retail development in Englewood, a neighborhood that is considered a food desert- an area that lacks grocery stores or access to fresh food. When financing the development, dubbed Englewood Square, DL3 Realty utilized crowdfunding platform Fundrise to raise $500,000 in preferred equity. The amount of capital sought was raised from 61 investors, from 21 states, in less than 48 hours according to Ben Miller, CEO of Fundrise, who noted from an income point of view and from a cost of construction standpoint this deal made sense for investors. Whole Foods image via Shutterstock. "It has a good basis because of the public support," h...
- Chicago's Englewood neighborhood is a "food desert."
- At this new location Whole Foods will offer produce and other products at a lower price point than at its other stores.
- The project presented minimal lease-up or construction risk to investors.
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