Wegmans announces first Charlotte store

CHARLOTTE — Wegmans is coming to the Queen City.

Representatives for the popular grocery store announced Monday they plan to open a store in Charlotte’s Ballantyne neighborhood. It’s being made possible by a collaboration with Northwood Investors, the developer behind the new Ballantyne Reimagined project. They are less than half a mile apart.

The new store will be located on North Community House Road on the east side of Ballantyne.

“Four years after opening our first store in North Carolina, we’re excited to announce that Wegmans is coming to Charlotte,” said a statement from Dan Aken, the vice president of real estate and store planning. “We’ve received hundreds of requests from locals asking for a store in their area, and we’ve spent years looking for exactly the right location. We’re thrilled to bring the Wegmans experience to this community.”

The 110,000-square-foot store will have a cafe with indoor and outdoor seating. The Wegmans will also have its usual produce, seafood, bakery, and deli departments, as well as wine and beer selections.

The grocery store is slated to open by late summer 2026.

‘Disney World of grocery stores’

For years, Channel 9′s Joe Bruno has been reporting on the movement to bring what’s been called “The Disney World of grocery stores” to Charlotte.

“We recognize how beloved [Wegmans] is throughout the East Coast and North Carolina and are ecstatic for it to join our tenant mix,” said part of a statement from Clifton Coble, the senior vice president of development for Northwood Office.

Wegmans has four stores in North Carolina and an additional store is planning to open in Holly Springs by 2027.

“We have heard a lot of excitement. We’ve heard the request. And we’re listening,” said district manager Hallie Johnston. “We’re so excited to be able to bring Wegmans to Charlotte.”

The store has a cult-like following. Some customers travel hours to shop there.

“We just bring two coolers, ice packs and they also have a bag of ice,” Shanon Wadsworth told Bruno.

‘We are an experience’

“Many people have gotten together in their local areas, or their local or regional areas where they came from, and they road trip, Joe,” Thomas Bailey, the founder of a Wegmans Facebook group, told Bruno. “They bring stuff back for each other. People go out during the weekend spending $800, $1,200 on Wegmans food.”

The Facebook page has tens of thousands of members, all with the same goal -- bringing the store to Charlotte. And it worked.

“We had a few other sites under consideration. But at the end of the day, we just felt that that was our best location and gives us regional access and, really, be able to reach as many people as we possibly could with our first entry into the market,” Aken told Bruno.

But that’s not all -- more stores could be coming.

“We think we can do multiple stores in the market, given the size of the market,” Aken said. “We don’t have anything else to announce and don’t have any other deals finalized. But we’re definitely looking.”

“We are an experience,” Johnston said. “We want families to come together and food enthusiasts to enjoy having grocery shopping be something fun, and not be a chore.”

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