Whole Foods Teases the West Loop

Whole Foods sign outside 550 West Washington Street

The following is true: “Whole Foods has opened in the West Loop.”  But that’s not the Whole story.

Instead of building a full store, the granola grocer has opened a single refrigerated case with a cash register in the lobby of 550 West Washington. Don’t get too excited.  There are no Peanut Butter Bumpers, or bulk bulgar.  It’s just sammitches and lunch-time edibles.

While new choices are always welcome, it would have been nice if Whole Foods had opened inside one of the hundreds of empty storefronts nearby instead of squatting in a lobby.  But hopefully, WF is testing the waters to see if some expansion is warranted in the area.  The nearest full store is at 1101 South Canal Street, about a mile and a half away, and not reachable from the West Loop by public transportation.



Author: Editor

Editor founded the Chicago Architecture Blog in 2003, after a long career in journalism. He can be reached at chicagoarchitectureinfo@gmail.com.

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  1. Would love to see a Whole Foods in W Loop – there must be a great industrial building it can use.

    If only the CTA South Loop/West Loop bus was really, honestly a West Loop bus. Alas, it doesn’t come far enough West to really seal the deal.

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  2. The 157 goes right down Clinton from the west loop to the WF on Canal.

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    • Editor

      I just checked the CTA map, and you’re right — the 157 does turn east on Taylor. I tried to take the 157 to Whole Foods once, and it didn’t make it that far south. Instead, it turned on Jackson. It must have been a fluke, or a construction re-route.

      It wouldn’t be the first time a CTA driver has taken liberties with his route. I’ve had them go completely off route in order to take a bathroom break. It’s hard to get annoyed with them for that, though, because when you have a stomach bug, if you have to go, you HAVE to go.

      But then there was the time I was on my way home from work and a 152 driver kicked everyone off his bus in the middle of the route because his shift was done. This was the last 152 of the night, so we had no choice but to call cabs, or walk to places where we could make connections to our destinations.

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