Whole Foods to open Fort Myers location in 2017

Whole Foods to open Fort Myers location in 2017

NBC-2.com WBBH News for Fort Myers, Cape Coral

Whole Foods Market, a nationwide natural and organic food retailer, has announced plans to open a 45,000-square-foot location in Fort Myers.

The store is scheduled to open in late 2017 at the intersection of Daniels Parkway and Ben C. Pratt/6 Mile Cypress Highway, the company said, adding that it will bring 300 jobs.

“We’ve received such a positive response from the west coast of Florida since the opening of the Whole Foods Market in Naples in 2008, so we are very excited to bring a new location to Fort Myers,” said Juan Nuñez, president of Whole Foods Market's Florida Region.

“The Fort Myers store will be more than 20 miles from Naples, making it more convenient for our loyal shoppers, and to cultivate new relationships in the Fort Myers community.”

For area fans, the desire for a healthier alternative has meant a commute to Collier County and the nearest store at the Mercato complex in Naples.

That store opened in 2008.

"I like all the organic options, nothing really processed or filled with chemicals," said Codi Patinella. "I think that as people become more aware it will definitely be a hit around here."

The Naples store has been successful enough to warrant a Lee County complement, a local developer's representative said.

The developer is still working with stakeholders to finalize the deal.

"They like the dynamics of what we have going on here. They like how Lee County has grown and matured," said Ronald Inge of Inge and Associates Inc.

There are Florida locations also planned for development in Destin, Altamonte Springs, Winter Park North and North Sarasota.

Whole Foods Market has 24 open stores in the state.