Why Are Parking Lots So Small At Trader Joe’s?
Have you ever noticed that at most Trader Joe's stores, the parking lots are extremely small?
If I was to ask most of the Hudson Valley what grocery store they would like to see come to their neighborhood I'm going to go out on a limb and say that most would agree that we need a Trader Joe's somewhere in the Hudson Valley. Poughkeepsie, Newburgh, Middletown, and Kingston are just a few of the many towns that would say YES if it was proposed that Trader Joe's was coming to their town. Right?
Trader Joe's Problems
For many years we have shared our desire to bring one to town but if they did come the only suggestion we have is that they make the parking lot big enough for all of their customers...LOL! It's been one of those "we have a Trader Joe's" problems that many have voiced over the years...
Why are Most Parking Lots at Trader Joe's so Small?
If you've ever been to a Trader Joe's, like the one located at 113 Mill Plain Rd, Danbury, CT, or the new store at 3240 Crompond Rd, Yorktown, NY you might have noticed that the parking lots seem to be on the small side. If you've noticed it, you aren't alone because according to News 10, there are numerous "conspiratorial theories" about Trader Joe's parking lots.
Trader Joe's Parking Lot Conspiracy Theory
The grocery chain has heard many theories as to why they think the parking lots are so chaotic and crazy. Personally, I've been to the Danbury location many times, and finding a parking spot is never easy. According to Tara Miller a host on the Inside Trader Joe’s podcast, they have heard about customers’ complaints, and some far-fetched theories as to why.
“If you spend any time on social media, looking at things about Trader Joe’s, you will find there are lots of conspiratorial theories about our parking lots, People out there in the world really seem to think — not all people, but a number of people — that we are purposefully making horrible parking lots."
Some theories claim that Trader Joe's picks smaller lots to cut costs, while others have said that they open new locations in walkable, dense neighborhoods over suburban sprawl which lead to congestion. Matt Sloan, whos part of the marketing team at Trader Joe’s had this to say, "We don’t open stores with the world’s most ridiculous parking lot on purpose." In reality, the reason most lots are small is that most Trader Joe's stores are on the smaller side. Sloan explained, "A 12,000-square-foot store will get far fewer parking spaces than a 70,000-square-foot store."
Not only are most stores small but they are also extremely busy, "Now let’s say that 12,000-square-foot store has 500 people visiting, and the giant store has 100 people visiting — the parking lots are going to feel very different."
Should Trader Joe's Store be Bigger?
Bigger stores would mean more parking, so why not make them bigger? Sloan said,
"The argument could be made, ‘Hey, Trader Joe’s, just make your stores bigger,' but that kind of changes who we are. We have small stores, so they come with small parking lots. If we had bigger stores, sure we’d have bigger parking lots, but we’d feel like a different store."
At the end of the day, folks in Dutchess, Orange, Ulster, and Sullivan County will take the small parking lots if we can just get a store to come to the Hudson Valley!!! Right?