We are thrilled to have our site – and WHAT a site it is! Rooted Carrot Co-op Market will be an anchor to historic downtown Cedar Falls, a highly sought after and bustling area and one that was at the very top of our list. The question was always – how, not why. The location of the store is the single biggest investment any food co-op ever makes, and while we are part way there – we need you to help take us all to the finish line! First though, why is this location and project so great?
In today’s competitive food market, it is not just smart to be careful and thorough, it is necessary. Our soon-to-be home at 123 7th Street in Cedar Falls covers all the bases indicated by market and feasibility studies, as well as guidance from seasoned professionals in the industry.
Research factors included information about competitors’ sales in the greater metro area, the amount of traffic passing the downtown Cedar Falls area, convenience, visibility, and accessibility. In the start-up world, food co-ops have slightly better odds of succeeding in the long term than their start-up peers. Even so, food co-ops that do not survive over the long term are most commonly in that position because they initially chose a site that was too small or a site that was not visible enough to the general public. We have avoided both pitfalls with our incredible location.
While Rooted Carrot Co-op Market will have a core group of committed shoppers, business from the more casual shopper is also important. Being on the corner of 7th and Main Street downtown AND having over 20 devoted parking spaces offers the vital visibility, convenience and accessibility required to be a successful business in the long term. Downtown Cedar Falls has been without a grocery store for over 20 years. In fact, the City of Cedar Falls recently committed to the need for a downtown grocery store in the 2019 visioning work which included residential input.
Brent Dahlstrom, local developer owns the mixed-use project which will have two floors. The top floor will have apartments while most of the main floor will be home to Rooted Carrot (7500 square feet). As a build to suit project, Rooted Carrot Co-op Market has been at the table contributing to the decisions over factors we know drive co-op grocery success like layout, parking, shape and flow, design, operational attributes, and even delivery truck navigation. No detail is too small, in fact Rooted Carrot shoppers’ access to the green roof is a detail we are currently working on with the developer and the rest of the team.
But all of this only matters if you help! We need you to spread the word and help us increase our membership. Please share the exciting news about this site, why it is great, share our photos or social media posts. This community is only going to get stronger through these kinds of small efforts to increase interest and membership.
Most of all, Rooted Carrot Co-op Market Board of Directors and devoted committees thank you for your patience and persistence to see this through all the way to the finish line!