How NYC's Hell's Kitchen Neighborhood Is Trying To Woo Trader's Joe's

If you are in Hell's Kitchen and happen to have some downtime before your Valentine's Day plans, you might notice the neighborhood's attempt to woo the massive grocery chain Trader Joe's. "WE NEED A TRADER JOE'S IN HELL'S KITCHEN!" Erik Bottcher, Council Member of the 3rd district of the New York City Council, wrote in a post to his official Instagram page. 

Bottcher decided to host a press conference with a Valentine's Day theme, asking the brand to be Hell's Kitchen's Valentine. Apparently, this will involve unfolding a massive card before Hell's Kitchen park at noon. As cheesy as that might sound, there does appear to be a genuine feeling behind the attempt. "I'm hoping this press conference on Monday shows Trader Joe's that there's a whole community out there, there are thousands of us out here that are in need of a Trader Joe's," Anne Davis, a resident and organizer of the Facebook group "We Need a Trader Joe's or Aldi in Hell's Kitchen," told W42ST.NYC.

While most of the small engagement Bottcher's post received consisted of one-word positive exclamations, one opinion came from a person who said that even though they do go to Trader Joe's on occasion, there are plenty of local food stores on Ninth Avenue. Unfortunately, some grocery stores may not survive 2022 due to inflation and supply chain issues. 

Hearts and roses may not be enough for Trader Joe's to come to Hell's Kitchen

Giving a corporate entity a huge Valentine's Day card on behalf of a neighborhood is a nice gesture, but is it enough to really get Trader Joe's to turn its attention to Hell's Kitchen? We can't be so sure.

There are some potential issues that may deter this idea before it gains more traction. As reported by the New York Post, Hell's Kitchen has made headlines for housing a Rite Aid that suffered so much shoplifting that it had to close. Reportedly, the last two months alone saw the pilfering of $200,000 worth of goods. However, CURBED notes that Rite Aid also saw profits drop due to supply chain issues.

A bigger issue is rent. Marisa Redanty, a Hell's Kitchen organizer and activist, had learned from Trader Joe's that they were worried about the rental cost for such a space (per W42ST). She is hopeful, though, because Erik Bottcher, New York Councilman for the third district, is involved. Anne Davis elaborated on this point, sharing "Erik told us that Trader Joe's told them it was the first time that an elected council member came to them to ask for a location." With nine other locations now open in Manhattan, perhaps the company will be open to persuasion and the folks of Hell's Kitchen will be shopping in Trader Joe's in the near future.