OP Dominick's eyed by Pete's Fresh Market

Pete's manager says River Forest location is not under consideration


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By Timothy Inklebarger

Staff Reporter

Dominick's locations throughout the Chicago area are scheduled to close Dec. 28, but the Oak Park store could be purchased next year by a Chicago grocery store chain, Pete's Fresh Market.

Charlie Poulikis, a Pete's Fresh Market manager who handles the company's real estate transactions, said in a telephone interview that Pete's representatives toured the Oak Park Dominick's, 259 Lake St., about a month ago and are considering purchasing the location.

He said the Dominick's at 7501 North Ave. in River Forest, which is not owned but leased by Safeway, Dominick's parent company, is not under consideration.

"It's a small store," Poulikis said. "I like that store, but we like to buy, not lease."

Poulikis said Pete's expects to make a decision on the purchase, along with the potential purchase of other stores, between the 15th and 20th of January. He declined to give details on the number of stores the company is considering.

"We could buy one or 10 or zero," he said.

Poulikis said Pete's currently has 10 locations, seven in the city and three in the suburbs. Although the chain's stores are typically about 60,000 square feet — the Oak Park location is about 45,000 square feet — the size is "not a concern."

"It's a nice location and it's big enough for the town," he said, adding that the major concern for the grocery store chain is whether potential sites are located near another grocery store. "We don't want to buy something next to a Jewel," he said.

Village President Anan Abu-Taleb said in a phone interview that other grocery stores also are considering purchasing the Oak Park location but declined to give details.

"Oak Park is ripe for investment, and it's a good opportunity for the Pete's Markets of the world to be looking at Oak Park in a very serious manner," he said.

It's still uncertain whether Pete's will purchase the location, Abu-Taleb said, but village hall "needs to be ready to get them through the village process as quickly as possible and set up."

Email: tim@oakpark.com

Reader Comments

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OP Transplant  

Posted: January 30th, 2014 9:58 AM

To Renee - Maybe someone should explain to the people at Pete's that the store must be staffed with a carefully calculated percentage of Oak Park's only two official races, Caucasian and African-American.

OP Resident # 545 from Oak Park  

Posted: January 30th, 2014 9:33 AM

Renee, assuming they buy this location Pete's should hire the best people possible, race & ethnic origin aside. It is almost certain that once they begin accepting applications there will be a large number of potential workers. They should pick the best, period.


Posted: January 30th, 2014 8:26 AM

Hoping that their hiring practices are a tad bit different. They seem to be a bit biased with whom they hire. If you have noticed, only Hispanics run the stores and their working employees are only hispanic. I love their prices but they do receive a Diverse Shopper bringing the same $$ and hoping that they give others the chance to be employed.

ETphonedhome from Oak Park  

Posted: December 31st, 2013 8:41 AM

I think bringing Pete's to this space is a fantastic idea! I currently shop at the Pete's on Roosevelt in the burbs and I am always amazed by the courtesy & helpfulness of the staff working there. Their food is fairly priced and their produce,bakery, meat/deli dept Rocks!!

Anthony from River Forest  

Posted: December 30th, 2013 2:41 PM

Maybe the OP village government can find the owners of the old Food Bargin Center. I am sure they would be game to reopen in Lake St.

Violet Aura from Chicago, Illinois  

Posted: December 30th, 2013 2:14 PM

Um Charlie, I guess you didn't REALLY read what I wrote! I was speaking of OP's choices in general. There are more indie coffee houses in Elmhurst than OP and they are better! There is only one vegan/vedge restaurant and there should be several! OP is a very sophisticated town and the lack of options is annoying. No decent produce market is a drag.

joe from south oak park  

Posted: December 30th, 2013 11:16 AM

up until they get something in place, Pan's on OPA is a viable choice.


Posted: December 30th, 2013 11:15 AM

Pete's is a good store, and the fact that the square footage of the Lake Street building is not a concern could be a good sign. That variable is what ultimately doomed Oak Park's chance of landing Mariano's.

Oak Parke Resident from Oak Park  

Posted: December 30th, 2013 9:06 AM

I would love a Pete's Fresh Market on Lake street.

Bridgett from Oak Park  

Posted: December 30th, 2013 12:59 AM

"all the comments?" I see zero that mention veganism or organics. And one that mentions vegetarianism. So I'm not exactly sure what is "beyond confusing."

Speedway from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: December 29th, 2013 10:58 PM

Guys, lighten up. All we are doing is wishful thinking. Tis the season.

Bill Dwyer  

Posted: December 29th, 2013 9:12 PM

Well put, Charlie. I appreciate vegetarian and even vegan, on occasion, but neither taste will fill a 45,000 square food store. So all the comments regarding such are quite silly, as Monty Python would put it. If it needed that much space, the RF Whole Foods store would be too small. And it isn't.

Charlie from Oak Park, IL  

Posted: December 29th, 2013 7:41 PM

This is beyond confusing - isn't the goal to get this space filled (and the revenues flowing)? Debating about which has better vegan options and organic varieties seems silly right now. Until the space is sold, it is nothing.

Speedway from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: December 29th, 2013 5:00 PM

I would rather see a Tony's in that spot. I do like Pete's Fresh Market but I think that their prices are much higher than Tony's. Seems to be more like a Whole Foods store in design as well as price.

Violet Aura  

Posted: December 29th, 2013 11:16 AM

If Pete's is anything like Tony's, then I hope and pray for this! OP is an odd duck. It should have more really GOOD restaurants than it does. Not gourmet, but healthy and reasonably priced. Vegetarian at the very least. Same with grocers. There has never been a decent produce market in OPRF!!!

What are you people thinking  

Posted: December 29th, 2013 9:11 AM

How would anyone from oak park ever shop in austin or lawndale? How would yo ever found a Pete's or a Leamington? We need a real food store, Treasure Island is a small local chain, with ethnic foods for place all over the world, at good prices that would be a great fit for OP.


Posted: December 29th, 2013 8:08 AM

Oak Park needs a grocery store for Oak Parkers, not Austin.


Posted: December 29th, 2013 12:31 AM

Everyone I talk to in Oak Park wants Leamington's to move there. If you go to the Austin Leamington's it's all Oak Parkers, and they want to shop closer to home

OPRF FB Letterman 1964 from River Forest  

Posted: December 28th, 2013 12:21 PM

My vote is for a Moo and Oinks! Great value and variety. Moo and Oinks knows how to treat a customer.

JYM from Oak Park  

Posted: December 28th, 2013 9:26 AM

Having a Pete's Fresh Market in Oak Park would be wonderful! They have a greater selection of food and lower prices than Mariano's or Jewel. Hope this happens!

OP Resident #659 from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: December 27th, 2013 9:35 PM

The ridiculous lines and full lots at the Jewel on Lake Street since the shelves emptied at the local Dominick's prove that someone will make a mint by opening a store here. I hope the Village doesn't stumble over its clown feet and screw this up. I too voted for Anan on the belief he would make Oak Park an easier place for businesses to do business in. Let's welcome Pete's Fresh Market with open arms.

Johanna Brocker from River Forest, Illinois  

Posted: December 27th, 2013 9:22 PM

I'd like to see aStanley's fruit market I'd like to see a good butcher shop; it would be great to see a Treasure Island remember we are a village..there is a great advantage to shopping in a small store look at the volume Whole Foods does...what about Tischler's...

Pete's fan from Oak park  

Posted: December 27th, 2013 8:26 PM

I love to shop at the Pete's in Villa Park. It has a great & diverse produce section & large ethnic food section both dried/canned & frozen. It is different than any of the other markets & would compliment them nicely. I hope they "pick" Oak Park!

Chris from OP  

Posted: December 27th, 2013 7:59 PM

DystOPia: Amen. I voted for Anan because he seemed more open to common sense development. It's showtime.

Suzette from Oak Park IL 60301  

Posted: December 27th, 2013 7:26 PM

Yes, Yes, Yes...we need another market to replace Dominick's. What a loss this is to the residents, employees and tax base....every effort needs to be made to restore a market to this location. Walking to Jewel is a hazard, at best and it has become a tangled mess to shop in the "remodeled" store on Lake Street. Stop the monopoly and bring another market to Lake Street ! RE: Forest and Lake project: Dump it !

dystOPia from OP  

Posted: December 27th, 2013 5:55 PM

Village board needs to shift focus from D97 admin bldg (not needed, waste of money, who cares?) and bend over backwards to help transition to a new grocery story, which has more economic benefits than the proposed Lake & Forest (non)development.

Elizabeth Rexford from Oak Park  

Posted: December 27th, 2013 5:07 PM

I would love to see a nice store go in there! I stop by Dominick's frequently and I will really miss it a lot. The location suits my travel plans, as I navigate from south to north Oak Park. It's right there! I don't know Pete's, but it sounds good! I know it will be successful, particularly if it's competitive price-wise and quality-wise. I feel very sad about the loss of Dominick's.

David Rechs from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: December 27th, 2013 3:25 PM

I've shopped at a few Pete's several times, and I'd love to see them in Oak Park. My impression is that their prices are more reasonable then Dominick's, Whole Foods, or Jewell.

Mary from River Forest, Illinois  

Posted: December 27th, 2013 2:43 PM

So do you think the RF location will stay vacant since it has a lease for another 2 years?

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