Is Whole Foods Coming to Boulevard Place . . . or Not?

View of Proposed New Galleria Whole Foods at Blvd Place at Former Eatzi’s Site

Uptown residents have had a lot of fun speculating about just how enormous and feature-filled the new Galleria Whole Foods flagship store on Post Oak Blvd. will be. The Whole Foods website lists it at a massive 78,000 sq. ft. — though the page it’s on hasn’t been updated since last October.

But now from our mailbox comes this gushing report:

Rumors have been circulating for the last week that Whole Foods has pulled out of Ed Wulfe’s BLVD Place development on Post Oak Blvd. The owners of a prominent jewelry store across Post Oak Blvd. have been telling people that the deal fell through.

Is this just shopping-center trash talk? Or has something changed? Our informant provides more Boulevard Place and Whole Foods FUD:


I, for one, hope this is not true. If Wulfe loses his one confirmed anchor tenant, then I think that he is facing insurmountable odds in mounting his original project. Additionally, the Ritz Carlton deal was rumored to have been formally announced back in October and still no word (other than the schematics leaked on Swamplot last month).

I contacted Whole Foods local (Kirby) as well as headquarters (Auston) and both people told me that they have not heard this rumor.

If Whole Foods pulls out, then Wulfe is left with one building houses the original 7 tenants from the Pavilion and adjacent retail center. A lot of effort for a zero net result. Unfortunately, I cannot see Whole Foods moving to The River Oaks district or any of the other mixed-use projects on the table. None offer the easy access or high visibility that Post Oak/San Felipe offer.

Please dig around and hopefully tell us that this is nothing more than idle gossip.

Okay, so we’re posting — which on Swamplot can pass for digging. Answers, anyone?

Similar pointed questions have been circulating on HAIF — though no one’s mentioned the jewelry store there.

Really, it’s amazing what a few pointed questions — and sincere-sounding expressions of “concern” — can do to plant the seeds of doubt in impressionable, underinformed minds. And the 2008 campaign season is just beginning!

Update: Here’s the latest.

Boulevard Place Whole Foods image: DMJM H&N