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South County Residents Continue Campaign for Trader Joe's

The Affton Community Involvement Association sent the CEO of Trader Joe's grocery stores a letter asking him to open a store in South County. Several Patch readers said they'd like to see the grocery following the departure of Sappington

After the recent news that the  and  are closing, Affton residents have their sights set high for a replacement: Trader Joe's.

The Affton Community Involvement Association sent Dan Bane, chairman and CEO of the specialty retail grocery store, a letter asking the company to consider South St. Louis County for a new store.

“Until recently, the desire to have a Trader Joe’s outlet has been largely at the non-formal conversational level,” chairman Larry Stone wrote in the letter. “However, the revelation by several media outlets of the closure of (Sappington Farmers’ Market)…has further heightened the hopes of Trader Joe’s enthusiasts.”

Stone cited the grocery’s ethical business model and neighborhood involvement as reasons why Affton, Concord, Crestwood, Sunset Hills, Fenton, Green Park and Sappington residents want a Trader Joe’s in the neighborhood.

Trader Joe's has four St. Louis-area stores, located in Brentwood, Des Peres, Chesterfield and Creve Coeur.

“While this may be a long shot, it is definitely in keeping with our mission of fostering positive economic development by encouraging community-friendly businesses to locate within and/or adjacent to the community of Affton,” Stone wrote in an email to Patch.

In the letter, Stone references media articles about South St. Louis County residents wanting a Trader Joe’s, including an .

For more, read the association’s letter:

September 9, 2012

Mr. Dan Bane

Chairman & CEO

Trader Joe’s Company, Inc.

800 S. Shamrock Avenue

Monrovia, CA 91016

Dear Chairman Bane:

I am the Chairman of the Affton Community Involvement Association (ACIA) located in St. Louis County, MO. Our mission is to “Address Community Concern’s Through Faith-based Involvement.” Affton is an unincorporated area of South Saint Louis County, MO essentially encompassing the 63123 zip code. Adjacent to Affton are the individual municipalities of Marlborough, Shrewsbury, Webster Groves, Crestwood and Sunset Hills.

My purpose in corresponding is to call your attention to the enthusiastic desire of residents of the aforesaid communities to see a Trader Joe’s outlet established within this multi-zip code area. Until recently, the desire to have a Trader Joe’s outlet has been largely at the non-formal conversational level. However, the revelation by several media outlets of the closure of a business specifically known and numbered 8400 Watson Road, St. Louis, MO 63119 has further heightened the hopes of Trader Joe’s enthusiasts. In an on-line article in the Affton-Shrewsbury Patch.com newsletter dated August 28, 2012 titled “Visions for Vacancies” the Associate Local Editor is seeking input from readers about what type of business they would like to see, and would avidly support, at the aforesaid location. The response from Patch readers is trending in favor of a Trader Joe’s.

A classified ad in the September 7, 2012 edition of the South County Times, which is distributed to households within the communities of Affton, Concord, Crestwood, Fenton, Green Park, Sappington and Sunset Hills; and in the Webster-Kirkwood Times, which is distributed to households in the communities of Webster Groves and Kirkwood, directs readers to a petition on the web site Sign On.Org titled “Bring Trader Joe’s to the Communities of South Saint Louis(County) Missouri” The latest petition results to date show 112 signatures and climbing (i.e., on a goal of 200).

Informal discourse at area chambers of commerce meetings also reveal a high degree of enthusiasm for the positioning of a Trader Joe’s outlet somewhere in this part of South Saint Louis County.

I want you to know that the members of the Affton Community Involvement Association, have great admiration for your demonstrated corporate neighborhood involvement, and for your ethical business model, which focuses on “great food + great prices = value.” We stand ready to help facilitate communication with the owners of 8400 Watson Road, St. Louis, MO 63119 (which by the way is situated on the original and famous “Route 66”), and/or communication with any appropriate governmental contacts, with whom you may wish to have discourse. 

We very much appreciate your kind consideration of the potential of locating a Trader Joe’s in our general area.

Yours truly,

Larry C. Stone

 Affton Community Involvement Association - “Addressing Community Concerns Through Faith-Based Involvement” - 6126 Savio Drive - Affton, Missouri 63123-2759 - (314) 330-1500

[Editor's Note: This story has been updated to include all of the current Trader Joe's locations in the St. Louis metro area.]

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