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by Anna Merod April 17, 2018 at 1:45 pm 0

Less than three months after Freshbikes closed its Ballston location, another bike store has opened its doors in the space.

After 11 years in business, Freshbikes closed its Ballston location  “due to circumstances outside our control,” according to a message on the store’s website.

The bike store closed its two other regional locations as well.

In its place, Spokes Etc. opened this week.

Tyler Flowers, Spokes Etc.’s manager, said he isn’t worried about a lack of demand for bikes in Ballston and thinks Spokes Etc. will do just fine along the Metro corridor. The store faces competition from nearby Conte’s Bike Shop.

Though Freshbikes is gone, its sign is still there due to permitting issues, Flowers said. Once Spokes Etc. puts up its own sign in several weeks, it will hold a grand opening, he added.

Spokes Etc. already has five other locations in Northern Virginia including Alexandria, Belle View, Fairfax, Leesburg and Vienna.

by ARLnow.com March 12, 2018 at 10:30 am 0

(Updated at 10:50 a.m.) As rumored, a 7-Eleven store will be replacing the former Lee-Lex Service Center along Lee Highway.

The service center closed in 2016 and is currently being torn down. A recently-posted sign on the fence surrounding the property says that a new 7-Eleven store will be coming soon.

Property records show that the property at 5747 Lee Highway was purchased in January 2017 for $1.65 million by an LLC associated with the home address of the owner of a D.C.-based architecture firm.

According to the chain’s website, there are existing 7-Eleven stores at 2525, 3901, 4505, 5030 and 6730 Lee Highway.

by ARLnow.com March 12, 2018 at 9:30 am 0

Where once there were gadgets, there will now be bras.

Italian lingerie brand Intimissimi is opening a new store at the Pentagon City mall, in the former Brookstone space.

Intimissimi, which boasts nearly four times as many stores worldwide as top U.S. lingerie brand Victoria’s Secret, announced plans to expand to the U.S. in 2015. Since then it has opened more than a dozen U.S. stores, from New York to Los Angeles and points in between, while positioning itself as “a more refined alternative to Victoria’s Secret.”

Intimissimi is hiring for its new Fashion Centre at Pentagon City location, which is being paired with a store for parent brand Calzedonia, which offers “Italian legwear and beachwear.”

by ARLnow.com February 27, 2018 at 8:55 am 0

Spokes Etc. to Take Over Freshbikes Store — Northern Virginia bike retailer Spokes Etc. is expected to open in the former Freshbikes location in Ballston by the end of March. “[Spokes Etc. President Jim] Strang said the store will stock his main brands, which are Specialized and Trek, and he plans to pick up one or two boutique bike brands to complement them.” [Bicycle Retailer, Spokes Etc.]

Arlington Near Last for Snowfall on East Coast — Based on a chart from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Arlington and D.C. ranked 65th among 68 eastern U.S. cities for snowfall this season, with a measly 3.3 inches. Only three deep south cities recorded less snowfall than has been reported at Reagan National Airport. [Patch]

More DCA Construction Impacts — Due to construction, Metro walkway airline kiosks and bag drops for Delta and American Airlines at Reagan National Airport are being relocated to the National Hall in Terminal B/C today. [Twitter]

Flickr pool photo Lisa Novak

by Bridget Reed Morawski February 23, 2018 at 10:45 am 0

When James Sampson was 14, a few of his friends were hit with the red ring of death — the notorious Xbox problem that devastated gamers globally. Instead of buying new devices, they turned to Sampson — who soldered some of the wiring in the devices, along with some other tinkering, and brought them back to life.

He saved his friends hundreds of dollars, and his only training was a few hours spent watching YouTube video tutorials.

“It became a lot of people calling me asking me to fix their cell phones, laptops, just any device they had,” said Sampson. He began referring people to an actual electronic repair business — until he realized that the shop was making a lot of money.

The now 23-year-old has now gone into business himself, opening up Wireless Rxx last week at 2340 Columbia Pike. Sampson works alongside longtime electronics repairman Mario Vasquez, who has been in business for about 26 years. Sampson does the microelectronic repairs and soldering while Vasquez focuses on more traditional electronic appliances.

The pair complement each other technically and linguistically; the Chilean-born Sampson’s first language was Spanish, so he’s able to help the many nearby Spanish-speaking customers and Vasquez as he assists English-speaking clients.

By the end of the first week, Wireless Rxx made back their $700 rent without any marketing or advertising — and without the planned “old retro vibe” interior design changes, including new neon signs and flooring. The building itself, which Sampson calls “old and tattered,” stands out from the luxury mixed-use development across the street.

Wireless Rxx saw around 27 customers, and earned around $1,700 in the first week, with many flat-screen television repairs, laptop fixes, and cell phones that needed to be unlocked — though Sampson runs serial numbers and other phone identification numbers to make sure that he isn’t unlocking a stolen phone.

While many Arlingtonians might be excited to get a new phone and toss their older model, many low-income residents are finding value in the service, Sampson said, as they are able to pay significantly less for what is in most cases a relatively minor fix instead of buying an entirely new product or waiting weeks for a manufacturer repair.

“It’s a mix of what the market economy put up,” said the young entrepreneur. “You either have to wait for your fix — because if you break your phone and you go to Apple, it can be a $200 or $300 price tag — or if you take it here, it can be under $100.”

He has friends who are either recent immigrants or on college scholarships with less money to spare. They’ll go to Sampson with their younger sister’s iPads and $20 or $30, looking for a repair. It helps them maintain a decent standard of living without spending money that they don’t have for a brand new device, he said.

Sampson buys dead devices from customers, which he either fixes, sells, or recycles responsibly with a certified e-recycling company. Most electronic components aren’t safe for general trash collection.

He stressed the importance of proper electronic recycling, noting the dangerous chemicals in lithium batteries, which are found in many electronic devices. Poking one can result in chemical burns.

“If something’s broke, you can still fix it. You can still put maybe a third of the device’s [cost] into fixing it, and it’ll be a working device as opposed to buying a new one,” said Sampson. “Especially in our society right now, we just throw things away.”

by Bridget Reed Morawski February 22, 2018 at 10:10 am 0

A 10,000 square foot Ulta Beauty location is set to open its doors at Pentagon Row later this week.

The opening of the 1101 S. Joyce Street location is scheduled for 10 a.m. on Friday, February 23. The store “will feature 20,000 beauty products across 500 brands, as well as a full-service salon.”

The first 100 shoppers on Friday, Saturday and Sunday will be given beauty products and makeovers. Gift recipients will be given a “beauty treat” valued between $5 and $100, and can choose between a discounted first hair or facial appointment voucher at the in-store salon or skincare bar.

Ulta Beauty currently runs 1,058 locations across the country, according to a company press release.

by ARLnow.com January 19, 2018 at 9:45 am 0

More Stuff Coming to Ballston — Even more hip food-and-drink spots are on the way for Ballston. A 3,000 square foot Union Kitchen Grocery store is coming to the ground floor of the revamped Ballston Quarter mall, at the corner of Wilson Blvd and N. Randolph Street, while a Compass Coffee cafe will also be opening in the mall. [Washington Business Journal]

Wheels Stolen Off the Lot at Dealership — Someone stole tires from three vehicles parked in the lot of a car dealership on Lee Highway just after midnight Wednesday. “An unknown suspect(s) removed the tires from and tampered with multiple vehicles in the parking lot of a business,” police said in a crime report. There is no suspect description and no surveillance footage, we’re told. There is a Toyota dealership on the 4000 block of Lee Highway, where police said the crime occurred, but also a Honda dealership nearby. [Arlington County]

Garvey Confident About Amazon — Arlington County Board member Libby Garvey is optimistic about Amazon coming to the area. “I think Amazon is very likely coming here,” she said at a Northern Virginia Chamber of Commerce conference, shortly after it was announced that Northern Virginia, D.C. and Montgomery County, Maryland were among the top 20 finalists for Amazon’s HQ2. “We have got everything here.” [Washington Business Journal]

by Chris Teale November 27, 2017 at 10:45 am 0

The planned Verizon store in Clarendon is expected to open in mid-December, according to the company’s website.

Signs are up for the store at 2930 Clarendon Blvd, and Verizon said the store should be open on Monday, December 11. Originally, it had been planned to open late last month, but that has been pushed back.

It replaces the former Pinkberry froyo shop, next to Cava Mezze. Verizon stores offer wireless plans, smartphones, cases and other products and services. The only other Verizon-operated store in Arlington is in the Fashion Centre at Pentagon City mall.

by Chris Teale November 21, 2017 at 2:45 pm 0

A British-based clothing store is now open at the Fashion Centre at Pentagon City.

Superdry opened a 5,600-square-foot store next to Kate Spade New York on the mall’s second level earlier this month.

The chain offers “vintage Americana and Japanese-inspired graphics with a British style,” and is known for, among other things, its Windcheater jackets that keep the worst of the weather off. It also has clothing for men and women, and does a line of sportswear.

Its only other location in Virginia is in Tysons Corner, with another at the Clarksburg Premium Outlets in Maryland.

“Inspired by a trip to Tokyo in 2003, Superdry fuses design influences from Japanese graphics and vintage Americana, with the values of British tailoring,” reads a blurb on the mall’s website. “The result – unique urban clothing, with incredible branding and an unrivalled level of detailing. Such distinctiveness has gained the brand exclusive appeal, as well as an international celebrity following.”

by ARLnow.com November 1, 2017 at 9:45 am 0

A new Starbucks has opened its doors in Ballston.

The chain’s latest cafe in Arlington is located at 1000 N. Glebe Road, in the new Marymount University complex, built on the site of the former Blue Goose.

The new development should supply plenty of potential Starbucks customers. It consists of a nine-story office building and a 12-story, 267-apartment residential building that will house students and other renters.

by ARLnow.com September 5, 2017 at 10:50 am 0

A froyo shop is becoming a Verizon store.

The former Pinkberry along the 2900 block of Clarendon Blvd is becoming a Verizon store. Interior construction is currently underway and the store is expected to open on Monday, Oct. 23, according to the Verizon website.

Verizon stores offer wireless plans, smartphones, cases and other products and services. The only other Verizon-operated store in Arlington is in the Fashion Centre at Pentagon City mall.

It was previously rumored that Verizon was looking at a portion of the former American Tap Room space in Clarendon for a retail store.

by ARLnow.com August 7, 2017 at 11:00 am 0

Clarendon is getting a new option for coffee, donuts and ice cream.

A joint Dunkin’ Donuts and Baskin Robbins store is coming to a ground floor space on at the corner of Clarendon Blvd and N. Garfield Street, one block from the Metro station. The space was formerly occupied by a dining area for Pete’s New Haven Apizza, which downsized earlier this year.

Permits have been issued for the interior buildout of the store, but so far there’s no word on an opening date. The new shop will join existing, nearby Dunkin’ Donuts locations in Courthouse, Virginia Square, Ballston and Cherrydale.

In March, ARLnow reported that reps for Dunkin’ had visited the space at 3017 Clarendon Blvd and were considering a lease.

by Chris Teale June 26, 2017 at 3:30 pm 0

Soon, some parts of Arlington will be just a walk away from the latest Wawa location.

The convenience store with a cult-like following announced today (Monday) it will open a new store at the intersection of Wisconsin Avenue NW and Prospect Street NW in Georgetown. That is within blocks of the Key Bridge and about a mile from the center of Rosslyn.

Wawa said it expects to open the store by the end of next year.

In a press release, Wawa promised the store will “feature the latest Wawa offerings with an upscale, urban feel, including customized architectural elements that meet the historical needs and requirements of the Old Georgetown Historic District.”

The store will include Wawa’s food and drink offerings as well as custom salads and nitro, cold brew coffee. It will be another one of the company’s “urban” stores, as it moves away from its suburban model where a gas station is attached.

Wawa earlier this month announced its first location in the region at 1111 19th Street NW, near the Farragut North Metro station. The push is part of the company’s efforts to add between 30 and 50 stores in the Washington region.

“This second location is one more step in Wawa’s overall D.C. expansion as we continue to look for sites and with the goal of opening numerous locations throughout the city over the next few years,” said Brian Schaller, Wawa’s chief real estate officer, in a statement.

Wawa officials say they are actively pursuing sites in and around D.C., potentially to include Arlington.

“Wawa will also continue its ongoing expansion in the surrounding counties in Maryland and Virginia to further our brand expansion,” the company said.

Map via Google Maps

by ARLnow.com May 26, 2017 at 10:00 am 0

A Kung Fu Tea store is coming to Clarendon, according to a county building permit.

Interior demolition is underway in the former Larry’s Homemade Ice Cream location at 3018 Wilson Blvd, next to the new Hanabi Ramen restaurant.

Kung Fu Tea, which has locations across the United States, serves various types and flavors of bubble tea.

No word yet on an opening date.

Photo courtesy Bill Colton

by Chris Teale May 16, 2017 at 1:25 pm 0

Target will be opening a new 41,500-square-foot store in Ballston, at the intersection of Wilson Blvd and N. Glebe Road, the company announced this afternoon.

The new store will be located on the first floor of the 12-story mixed-use development at 750 N. Glebe Road being constructed by Saul Centers, Inc. The development is three blocks from the Ballston Metro station, on the site of a former Mazda dealership.

Customers will be able to buy groceries, clothing and accessories, technology, beauty and home products, and toys and baby care items. There will also be a CVS Pharmacy inside the store.

The new Target will allow guests to order online and pick up products within one hour. It is projected to open in 2021.

“Target’s small-format store near Saul Centers’ mixed-use project at Wilson and Glebe will offer a convenient, one-stop shop for the surrounding neighborhoods,” said Mark Schindele, senior vice president of properties at Target, in a statement. “Local guests as well as visitors to the community will enjoy an easy and inspiring experience, featuring a grocery assortment, exclusive apparel brands, a location to pick up online orders and the convenience of 40 dedicated parking spaces.”

Target officials said small-format stores, geared to dense urban and suburban neighborhoods and college campuses, are a priority. The retailer plans to operate more than 130 small-format stores by the end of 2019; it has an existing small-format store in Rosslyn, which opened in 2015.

“I’m delighted to welcome Target’s expansion into the Ballston area of Arlington,” said Del. Patrick Hope (D) in a statement. “Target has broken the mold with its retail stores specifically tailored to the uniqueness of the neighborhood. The addition of more grocery options and a quick pick-up services is the right fit for the Ballston neighborhood and I can’t wait for their grand opening.”

Image via Target

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