We found 5 vacant spots to solve the Trader Joe’s gaps on Long Island


Trader Joe’s just opened a new store in Forest Hills this November.

That marked the popular grocery chain’s third Queens location. There are seven on Long Island, with five in Nassau and two in Suffolk County.

Suffolk’s two spots are in Commack and Lake Grove — or one store per every 780,00 people.

And that’s just not enough. Folks along Suffolk’s entire South Shore and the East End, especially in Riverhead, have been clamoring for a Trader Joe’s to call their own for years.

So we figured to give Trader Joe’s a push, with five great Long Island locations we found listed for lease.

(Although we can’t say whether or not these spots are already being spoken for.)

Scroll down for our list. Click here to request a Trader Joe’s in your town.

Some background

Trader Joe’s, which started in California in 1958, is still family owned, operated and doesn’t offer franchise opportunities. The decision on where to open next lies solely within the company.

Much of the process is opaque to the outside world — and well-guarded.

If you’re a loyal listener to the Trader Joe’s podcast, you’ve learned customer feedback and average household income play a part in where a Trader Joe’s will pop up next.

But to us, it would appear Suffolk’s South Shore and East End have the people — and the money — that would entice Trader Joe’s. So, frankly, what gives?

Here’s some help, Trader Joe’s. In the meantime, the rest of us shoppers who commute will continue to hope and pray our Ube ice cream doesn’t melt on the drive home.

For lease on Long Island

According to this report, the average size of a Trader Joe’s grocery store is between 10,000 and 15,000 square feet. But this is just an average. At least one store tops out at 30,000 square feet.

1. West Babylon

Former ShopRite at 50-110 Route 109 (14,000 sq. ft.)
Tap here for the full listing on

This might be the most perfect spot on our list, size wise, and not too far south of Sunrise Highway.

2. West Babylon

Several former stores, Great South Bay Shopping Center (largest is 11,250 sq. ft.)
Click here all Great South Bay listings on

What a shot in the arm a Trader Joe’s would be for this sprawling retail campus, though there’s already an Aldi so we’re not sure what type of lease restrictions might be in place.

3. West Islip

Former Wild by Nature, 478 Union Blvd. (22,000 sq. ft.)
Tap here for the full listing on loopnet.

This would be bigger than a typical Trader Joe’s, but the company does operate an East Coast store as large as 30,000 square feet: the Trader Joe’s Essex Crossing.

4. Bellport

Former bustling outlet center, 10 Farber Dr. (7,500 sq. ft.)
Click here for the full listing on

The Outlets at Bellport currently list a 7,500-square-foot opening. This would be on the smaller end, but remember the minimum and max are just an average. Actually the smallest Trader Joe’s is in Boston, measuring at only 5,200 square feet. This is also closer to the East End contingent.

5. Riverhead

Former Sports Authority, 1150 Old Country Rd. (10,210 sq. ft.)

When Sports Authority fell, this building in Serota Plaza got divided up. There’s currently a Dollar Tree and Planet Fitness, but there’s room for one more spot at a size that’s perfect for a TJ’s. And in a town that’s has arguably the most vocal group of people calling for a location. Check out this petition.

People waiting outside Trader Joe’s to shop for groceries in Pembroke Pines, Fla., on March 24, 2020. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson, File)

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