, Salem, MA

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January 20, 2014

20% rule hovers over election


The developer, CEA Group President Steven Cohen, said last week that he will build a shopping plaza on his current land if the rezoning does not pass, but that the plaza would not include a Whole Foods Market because it would not be “economically feasible” on a smaller site.

That statement contradicts a handout from CEA Group last September that said Whole Foods would be built even if the rezoning does not pass.

Asked to explain the change, Cohen said in an email, “CEA believes it would be desirable for Whole Foods to remain as part of the project and previously assumed that that would be the case. However, upon more careful study, CEA no longer believes that that option would be feasible.”

Staff writer Paul Leighton can be reached at 978-338-2675 or

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