Growing Forward 2018-08-08T16:03:28+00:00

Growing Forward

Special Expansion Vote Part II: August 29 – September 14

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Please VOTE one more time this year!

This spring our owners voted 93% in favor of relocating our West End store to 770 Cascadilla Street. At that time we mentioned that our plan was to purchase the property after leasing it for 10 years. Our original plan has not changed; this vote simply puts that plan into action.

Here’s the question that’s up for vote:

Should GreenStar be allowed to purchase the property known as 750-770 Cascadilla Street, in the City of Ithaca, during or at the end of its 10-year lease for that site? (Relocation of the Co-op’s main store to that site was previously approved by the Membership in March 2018.)

Please Vote! The special voting period runs from August 29 – September 14.

Questions & Answers

Yes, this vote is “Part II” of our expansion process. The vote in March 2018 approved two very important aspects of our expansion:

  • that we could enter into a new lease and sell 700 & 702 W. Buffalo St.
  • that we could amend our bylaws and certificate of incorporation to allow for the purchase of Investment Shares

The vote in March was not about the purchase of our new building. Our development partners wish to have the purchase plan included in the contract with the lease plan so that when our 10-year lease ends in 2029 we will purchase the building.

  • Owning the property will have a long-term positive impact on our overall financial health.
  • We would own over 80% of our revenue generating property. Currently we own only about 1% of our Co-ops total revenue.
  • A purchase will enable us to build equity in the most up-and-coming development area in our City.
  • Our monthly mortgage expense would actually be lower than our rental payments during our 10-year lease term. Renting our new location for 10 years will allow us to fine tune our business and set money aside each year in preparation for the transfer of ownership in 2029.

Yes! Leasing the building for 10 years will give us the opportunity to fine-tune our business practices and set money aside each year for our down payment. This is a favorable arrangement for the Co-op and our General Manager firmly believes that we will be in a financial position to make this purchase in 10 years, given the projections on our ability to grow sales with the expansion.

The down payment of $2 million is built into our business plan and accumulates in an escrow account during our first 10-year rental term. The remaining $7.4 million would be financed over a standard amortization period of 20-25 years. The chart below outlines our costs.

We will rent our new location for 10 years and set money aside for the purchase in 2029. The total cost of the purchase would be based on the actual costs in the chart above but is estimated to be about $9.4 million. As part of the purchase price we would be assigned the mortgage balance from the Landlord, which would be approximately $5.4 million at of the end of 2029. Of the remaining $4 million GreenStar would pay $2 million in cash in 2029 and the balance of $2 million would be rolled into our mortgage loan.

We’d love to answer them! Contact

Expansion Updates

We can’t wait to offer more of the products and services that you’re looking for.

Here are some highlights worth getting excited about:

  • We’ll grow from 6,500 sq. ft. to 16,500 sq. ft. and offer an expanded, more culturally diverse product line, with more local, organic, and Fair Trade products.
  • A better shopping experience with wider, accessible aisles and more space for all.
  • Our new building will accommodate all of our West End operations under one roof! The Space, The Classrooms (with a teaching kitchen), our Administrative Offices, and our Central Kitchen will all be part of our new store.
  • We’ll have a larger deli, complete with smoothies and specialty coffee drinks, and more seating in the café (inside and outside)!
  • More produce! We’re expanding the department and will offer a wider selection.
  • The addition of over 40 new jobs, with excellent benefits and pay.
  • Larger, safer parking lot!

View our new store floor plan.


West End Expansion Update

The Special Vote Passed ... What's Next?! Since the votes were tallied in early April, our General Manager and the expansion team has been working hard to get the expansion project going.  In...

May 26, 2018/by Alexis Self

Invest in Our Vision

Our Owner Investment Program will provide our New York State owners the opportunity to invest in our community-owned, local business while earning a fair return on their investment.

If you are ready to invest your time or money to support GreenStar’s Expansion and Relocation project, please contact Heidi Adami and Laura Buttenbaum at / 607-220-7887

Questions & Answers

GreenStar is counting on our owners to invest $2.5 million toward our Expansion and Relocation Project through the purchase of Investment Shares. Investment Shares are non-voting, preferred stock that provide owners the opportunity to invest in our community-owned, local business while earning a fair return on their investment. Across the country, our sister co-ops have successfully raised significant funds from their owners as a part of their project capitalization. Are you ready to help GreenStar do the same? Contact to invest in our vision!


  • An expanded, more culturally diverse product line, with more local, organic and Fair Trade Products
  • A better shopping experience with wider, accessible aisles and more space for all
  • Increased seating in the cafe and outdoor patio, as well as increase parking for cars and bikes
  • More room for classes and events, including a teaching kitchen and rental space
  • The addition of over 40 new jobs, with excellent benefits and pay
  • Consolidation of our West End operations under one roof to increase efficiency and improve the work environment
  • GreenStar will secure and expand its role as a cooperatively-owned, community hub

To learn more contact Laura and Heidi at or by calling 607-220-7887

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