Laurel Board of Trade

Holds Business Forum

The Laurel Board of Trade invites members of the Laurel and Main Street business communities to its bimonthly business forum at 9:30 a.m. today. Karl Brendle, the director of development management for the city of Laurel, will discuss growth and development in the city's historic district at the forum, to be held at Oliver's Meeting Room, Sixth and Main streets. The bimonthly meetings are held on the third Thursday of each odd-numbered month of the year. Call 301-483-0838.

Laurel Lakes Center

Undergoing Renovations

Laurel Lakes Shopping Center is undergoing major renovations for the first time since its opening in the early 1970s. In the first phase of the $5 million project, the 85,000 square feet formerly occupied by Kmart will become three retail stores: Michaels, an arts and crafts store; Ross Dress for Less, a women's clothing store; and Modell's Sporting Goods. The 43,500 square feet that once housed a multi-screen movie theater will be converted into a Staples office supply store. Two loading docks will be constructed for use by Michaels and Staples. The stores are expected to open in August and September.

The second phase, scheduled to begin in mid-August, involves site work for a future Red Lobster restaurant. Completion is expected by Oct. 1.

The renovation was designed by Annapolis-based architectural firm Bignell Watkins Hasser; the work is being done by L.F. Jennings Inc., a 52-year-old Falls Church-based firm that specializes in shopping centers, office parks, industrial buildings and other commercial ventures. The center is on Route 1 at Cypress St., Laurel.

-- Compiled by Gerri Marmer

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