Jack London Square is finally coming into its own with a fantastic new “mini” industrial food niche. Jack London Square has languished in the past with high vacancy, lack of anchor tenants and poor direction. Anybody who has walked through the area can tell you it can feel like an under-utilized ghost town. It has never been a real draw for shoppers, investors or CEO’s looking for corporate locations. Perhaps Jack London’s luck is changing with the new Public Market merchandising strategy.
Local manufacturing has turned out to be a hot new trend in Oakland, and the original idea of a food hall in Jack London Square has been thrown out altogether. After all, it does make more sense to sell fresh food at the point of creation. Small local food manufacturing is emerging as a stable industry with a core group in Jack London Square igniting the trend. With Oakland already known as a fantastic foodie destination, this is just the kind of tie in that could solidify the underused marketplace and provide a fantastic draw for tenants, investors and shoppers. Multi-family real estate investing in Oakland’s Jack London Square is a stable investment as development projects draw more high end renters.
According to Jim Ellis, president of Ellis Partners, responsible for the development of the market place, this is a real public market, with concepts most relevant to present day consumers. To put it in his words, “This will make a more interesting, more vibrant public market”. There are going to be 5 to 10 food manufacturers, right at the place where the food is sold, and this is an authentic idea.
There is already in existing cluster of food manufacturers in the area including Miette Bakery, Baio Pasta, Belcampo Meat Co, and Blue Bottle Coffee. Jose Corona, executive director of Inner City Advisors finds a growing need for this kind of hybrid space. In the past few years food and beverage manufacturers have been on the lookout for retail space of their own, and it has been difficult to fill this need.
East or West Oakland does not provide the required consumer base which is so essential for retailing. On the other hand, conventional retailers are short of zones or space for manufacturing food products. The Jack London Square area holds a lot of promise with the prospect of major office tenants soon to come. In the near future Jack London Square is sure to become an amazing food oriented destination with high tech office space, accessibility and plenty of parking.