Publix is almost ready to give Tampa another shot of GreenWise.
A much-anticipated Publix GreenWise Market will open in downtown Tampa at 7 a.m. Aug. 19, according to the company. The 26,000-square-foot store is the anchor retail tenant at Heron, the first apartment tower to open at Water Street Tampa, the $3.5 billion downtown development from Lightning owner Jeff Vinik and Bill Gates’s Cascade Investment
The store, located at 555 Channelside Drive, is Tampa’s second store bearing the GreenWise brand; a GreenWise operated in South Tampa’s Hyde Park from 2008 to 2019 before rebranding as a more traditional Publix.
That previous-generation iteration resembles what are now called Publix GreenWise Markets, smaller stores with a focus on organic food, higher-end groceries and more experiential shopping — think acai bowls, fine cheeses and craft beer and wine, which customers can sip while they shop.
Luring a major tenant with a focus on organic and natural foods was a priority for Water Street developers, who have pushed the idea of their development as one focused on the physical and mental well-being of those who live and work there.
When the store was announced in 2019, James Nozar, then the CEO of Water Street developers Strategic Property Partners, called it a “critical grocery anchor” for downtown Tampa.
“Our GreenWise partnership reflects (Strategic Property Partners’s) vision of creating a holistic lifestyle by prioritizing access to products that promote health and wellness,” Nozar said.
Vinik is among a group of investors who have loaned $15 million to the Times Publishing Co., owner of the Tampa Bay Times.
The Tampa store will be the ninth Publix GreenWise Market; a 10th is in the works in St. Augustine. The closest one at the moment sits in Odessa.
It’ll be the second new Tampa Bay Publix opening this month. A 48,387-square-foot store at 30841 Mirada Blvd. in San Antonio is scheduled to open Aug. 12.