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Arker Cos., Slate Sign Supermarket To Huge Far Rockaway Project

A rendering of the Edgemere Commons building where ShopFair has agreed to open a 28K SF supermarket.

A major mixed-use development in the Queens neighborhood of Far Rockaway is getting a 28K SF ShopFair supermarket, developers The Arker Cos. and Slate Property Group announced Thursday.

The developers broke ground in January on Edgemere Commons, a project that will deliver more than 2,000 affordable units in addition to retail and community space, medical facilities and outdoor public space. The planned 2.5M SF project will bring 11 new buildings to the area, one of which will house a 28K SF ShopFair supermarket, Commercial Observer reported.

ShopFair has since signed a lease for 25 years and will become the fourth ShopFair supermarket in the Rockaways, according to a release.

“From our first meetings with community members, we knew that creating a development that met the needs of Edgemere residents meant delivering a quality grocery store,” Arker Cos. principal Dan Moritz said in a statement. “The addition of ShopFair to Edgemere Commons will help eradicate a food desert and make healthy, nutritious food more accessible for the community.”

Far Rockaway and Broad Channel had approximately eight bodegas for every supermarket, according to a 2021 analysis of New York City Department of Health data by NY City Lens. Other neighborhoods have much more extreme ratios, like Brooklyn’s Sunset Park, where there are 45 bodegas for every supermarket. But Queens Borough President Donovan Richards Jr. said the planned ShopFair will help Far Rockaway's ongoing efforts to address its historic standing as a food desert.

“The signing of a lease for a supermarket in Edgemere Commons is a major milestone in the effort to create a first-class, affordable, mixed-use development in the Rockaways,” Richards said in a statement. “This supermarket represents a significant investment in the fight against food insecurity.”

Booth Capital Advisors’ Greg Parassio repped ShopFair in the deal, according to the release.

Edgemere Commons is one of the largest privately funded development projects in the city. The Arker Cos. acquired the site in 2016 but faced delays until 2019 due to the development planning process and, in 2020, the pandemic. Tishman Speyer acquired 10 of the 11 development sites for $90.4M in late 2021. Arker also scored a $78.4M refinancing for three of the buildings from Merchants Capital in September.