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updated: 7/14/2017 5:21 PM

Pete's Fresh Market preparing to open in Wheaton

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  • Pete's Fresh Market is expected to open in the Rice Lake Square shopping center off Butterfield Road in Wheaton.

    Pete's Fresh Market is expected to open in the Rice Lake Square shopping center off Butterfield Road in Wheaton.
    Daniel White | Staff Photographer

  • The shopping center's owner is seeking city council permission on Monday to allow developers to update the facade to accommodate a Pete's Fresh Market store.

    The shopping center's owner is seeking city council permission on Monday to allow developers to update the facade to accommodate a Pete's Fresh Market store.
    Daniel White | Staff Photographer

  • The closing of Sports Authority and the relocation of Whole Foods to another shopping center left two high-profile vacancies at Rice Lake Square.

    The closing of Sports Authority and the relocation of Whole Foods to another shopping center left two high-profile vacancies at Rice Lake Square.
    Daniel White | Staff Photographer

 
 

The anticipated opening of a Pete's Fresh Market in Wheaton would accomplish two things.

The store would once again bring a grocer to the Rice Lake Square Shopping center after Whole Foods moved earlier this year to a remodeled former Dominick's in Danada.

Pete's Fresh Market also could fill two high-profile vacancies left by the exit of Whole Foods and the closing of the neighboring Sports Authority store at the shopping center off Butterfield Road.

The project could take a step forward when the Wheaton City Council on Monday considers a request by the center's owner, Rice Lake Square LP, to amend existing ordinances that would allow developers to update the two storefronts to accommodate Pete's Fresh Market.

"It's nice to have both of those spaces filled," City Manager Mike Dzugan said Friday.

In a memo to the council, city planners say they have no objections to the proposed facade renovations and recommend approval of the request. The project also calls for a small, rear addition next to a service aisle.

"The facade of the new store incorporates elements of the existing center along with new, contemporary design elements," the memo reads.

Pete's Fresh Market is a family-owned chain founded by Jimmy Dremonas and his brothers. They named the grocer after their father.

Company executive Vanessa Dremonas did not immediately return a phone message Friday about the Wheaton store. Marget Graham, a principal at Mid-America, an Oakbrook Terrace firm that handles leasing for the shopping center, also did not return a call.

A flier on Mid-America's website shows that leases are "pending" for the two spaces that cover a total of 67,383 square feet.

The store could open by the end of the year and present some competition for Whole Foods. The latter opened in January in a 55,000-square-foot space in the Danada Square East shopping center. The move also allowed Whole Foods to add a taproom and cafe.

The council meeting is set to begin 7 p.m. Monday at city hall at 303 W. Wesley St.