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All Opinions Are Local
Posted at 10:40 AM ET, 09/18/2012

Are urban big box stores good or bad?

Topher Mathews of Georgetown Metropolitan found out what Vornado plans for the now-closed Georgetown Park Mall. They hope to attract two restaurants for the side of the building overlooking the C&O Canal and have lined up a number of large chain stores for the rest: TJ Maxx, HomeGoods, Michaels and an expanded J. Crew. Is this news welcome or disappointing?

The chain retailers will each have entrances on the street rather than an interior mall-like layout, as was the case before. That makes sense because Georgetown already has a main street to walk along and see shops: M Street.

Malls were designed to replicate the main street experience; when there’s already a main street, it’s just a less-trafficked side street, and its three levels, winding paths and dark layout made it inconvenient and unappealing.

Mathews isn’t so enthusiastic about which stores will fill the space. He says:

Essentially, when Vornado is done with it, the bulk of the mall will have been converted into a couple big box stores that have all the charm and destination-appeal of Rockville Pike.

[Continue reading David Alpert’s post at Greater Greater Washington.]

David Alpert is founder and editor of Greater Greater Washington. The Local Blog Network is a group of bloggers from around the D.C. region who have agreed to make regular contributions to All Opinions Are Local.

By  |  10:40 AM ET, 09/18/2012

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