A rendering of a planned industrial building on Route 17 in Lodi, where Urban Edge Properties is converting a former National Wholesale Liquidators store — Courtesy: Resource Realty of Northern New Jersey
By Joshua Burd
A developer that is converting a Lodi retail building into industrial space has landed a tenant for the project, inking a 130,000-square-foot lease with a grocery wholesaler.
The landlord, Urban Edge Properties, on Thursday announced the lease with AAA Wholesale Group as it continues its renovations at 370 Essex St. Located along Route 17, the building will serve as a wholesale membership club supplying smaller grocery stores, delis and convenience stores, with 20,000 square feet allocated to consumers wishing to shop in store.
AAA has successful locations in the Bronx and Brooklyn, Urban Edge said. The new location will be its first in New Jersey and is expected to yield more than 100 new jobs.
Resource Realty of Northern New Jersey’s Tom Consiglio and Scott Peck represented ownership, while CBRE’s Kevin Dudley represented the tenant.
“Lodi is an ideal location for our buyers with excellent commercial access and easy loading. We are excited to open our first New Jersey location,” said Alex Almontaser, founder and CEO of AAA Wholesale Group. “We have a partner in Urban Edge Properties that is vested in our success, reconfiguring the property to meet our needs and make it possible for us to service the surrounding community through direct to consumer wholesale merchandise.”
Urban Edge, a real estate investment trust, announced in May that it was converting the former National Wholesale Liquidators store into a warehouse and distribution facility. The plan calls for repurposing the first story into a 103,000-square-foot, high-bay warehouse with 26-foot ceiling clearance, seven new loading docks, LED lighting with motion detection and a new roof and parking lot.
“With the recent market challenges resulting from COVID-19, we are pleased to have identified this use and secured a terrific lease and partnership with AAA Wholesale Group,” said Chris Weilminster, executive vice president and chief operating officer of Urban Edge. “The market remains active, especially in premier locations, and we look forward to continuing to execute on Urban Edge’s strategy of maximizing well-located, infill, transit-oriented assets that serve their surrounding community.”