News and notes from Reston (tm).

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Let a thousand flowers Bloom! (Just not at Tall Oaks)

Bad news for folks upset about the awesome Tall Oaks Giant closing later this month, leaving behind a stucco wasteland of broken dreams and busted franchises: A persistent rumor that the space would be filled by Bloom, an upscale Food Lion variant targeted at non-NASCAR-intensive suburban communities who might actually read the paper often enough to remember the whole bleached-meat scandal, is just that--a rumor.

So says ABC Management, which runs Tall Oaks, at a community meeting convened by Hunter Mill Supervisor Cathy Hudgins, which the Reston Times saw fit to cover but not post online. And folks are hopping mad!

Judy St. Andre, a Reston resident for 33 years, started a petition that protests Giant's closing. [snip] Prescriptions will be transferred to the South Lakes Village Center Safeway, a move that has puzzled many residents. Hudgins said the action makes it hard to believe Giant is concerned about the communities it serves.

"I don't think they care about it. The fact that they were comfortable to transfer us to Safeway says something about it," she said.
Others see an ulterior motive on the part of Tall Oaks' owners.
Some residents raised concerns of a hidden agenda on the property owner’s — Boston based Colony Realty Partners — part. Vacant space does not serve anyone — owners, residents or merchants — but some of the space has been vacant for years. It does not make sense "unless the owner is deliberately shutting this down," said Mike Corrigan. He added that with the planned arrival of Metro to Wiehle Avenue, the center, located off of Wiehle, is a prime piece of land for redevelopment. Colony, which owns close to 3 million square feet of space in the Washington metropolitan area, took ownership of the Tall Oaks Village Center at the very end of December of 2006 from Regency Centers.
Back and to the left! We're through the looking glass here, folks.

ABC Management says it's working to fill the space, but twos upon twos of its remaining tenants are getting worried.
Merchants at Tall Oaks, including Keith Morris from Paradise Nails and Skin Care, have also grown increasingly worried about their businesses. Morris said though the salon serves loyal clientele, it hasn't had steady growth. Morris said he is thinking of relocating to Centerville or Manaassas.
Manassas? Wow, things must really be bad at Tall Oaks.

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