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Foxtrot faces pushback on plans to open in Chicago neighborhood

Small businesses lead efforts to stop it

Urban convenience-store retailer Foxtrot Market is expanding across the country—but its plans for a new store in Chicago’s Andersonville neighborhood are in question.

Small business owners are rallying against Foxtrot’s efforts to open in a former restaurant site at 5259 N. Clark St., Block Club Chicago first reported. About 40 small business owners or managers representing 35 local businesses signed a letter sent to city officials opposing the potential new tenant, Block Club Chicago said, and a public petition titled “Protect Andersonville’s Small Businesses from Being Replaced by Chains like Foxtrot” had 1,941 signatures as of Friday.

Efforts are being led by Ándale Market owner Mia Sakai, who told Block Club Chicago that Foxtrot staff have shopped her store, which has a similar concept as her business.

“[Foxtrot] offers nothing that the neighborhood’s small businesses don’t currently provide, and directly threatens our community already offering coffee, liquor, grocery, convenience and food service,” the letter from Andersonville businesses to local officials reads, according to Block Club Chicago. “We are at capacity for chains and in danger of deteriorating the neighborhood’s identity into an outdoor strip mall.”

Chicago-based Foxtrot offers a wide variety of products, including freshly crafted chef-prepared meals, premium groceries, handpicked wine, snacks and sweets, personal care products and gifts. It further serves as a neighborhood destination for local makers.

There are currently 32 Foxtrot locations across Chicago, Washington, D.C., Dallas and Austin, and the chain, which raised $100 million in 2022 to fund further growth, plans to continue expanding. It also announced in November it had plans to merge with urban grocer Dom Kitchen & Market. Upon closing of the deal, the companies will become a new entity, Outfox Hospitality.  

Foxtrot did not respond to CSP’s request for comment on the Andersonville store.

According to Block Club Chicago, the owner of the building Foxtrot wants to open in said he will consider other options for the space, leaving the future of the store in question.

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