CORRECTION: OK, so this was a false alarm. We were told by a reliable source and by employees at the Hallmark store that a real Apple store was coming. Here’s what’s really coming: PeachMac. We apologize for the frenzy that we may have caused Darn.
We’ve been hearing rumors for a few days that an Apple Store is coming to Charlottesville and we confirmed this today. Though the timeframe hasn’t been confirmed, Apple will be opening its first Charlottesville store in Barracks Road Shopping Center in the space where Hallmark currently resides.
This is pretty big news for Charlottesville. As recently as just a few years ago, one of the biggest complaints about Charlottesville from residents was the lack of shopping options. Locals would have to trek to Tyson’s Corner or Short Pump to get their shopping fix. But how things have changed in the past year.
The Shops at Stonefield has been the biggest change to the Charlottesville shopping landscape of late. Trader Joe’s and the Regal Stadium 14 cinemas have been the most popular additions to open to date. However, Williams Sonoma, Pottery Barn, and Brooks Brothers are slated to open their doors in 2013. Just up Route 29, Stein Mart and Homegoods are the new additions to the newly-revamped Shopper’s World.
We also have an impending influx of grocery stores that will make Charlottesville a very competitive market. The addition of Trader Joe’s was much needed. The Fresh Market is planning to open in Albemarle Square Shopping Center in 2013 (in the space of the old Circuit City). Wegman’s is still also planning to open a Charlottesville along 5th Street.
So, what does all of this mean? It probably means a lot more than just improved shopping options. The fact that these national retailers have decided to invest in Charlottesville is a great thing. As residents, we know this is a great place to live. Not only does Charlottesville offer amazing natural beauty and culture, but it does have a nice, thriving economy. These recent announcements and additions will help the economic strength of Charlottesville.
We can only hope that this influx of investments will eventually lead to more employers relocating or expanding their businesses to Charlottesville. In the mean time, let’s rejoice that you’ll be able to get your hair cut at Staples Barbershop, grab a coffee at Greenberry’s, and walk around the corner to grab your new iMac. (Now figuring out where to park is another issue, but we’ll worry about that later).
One final note: Apple has done some spectacular things with its stores. For example, their New York stores on Fifth Avenue and Grand Central Station are both pretty amazing. It will be interesting to see if they someone integrate a bit of Charlottesville history into this store. We’ll see…