Let’s pause to give thanks ... for another Thanksgiving and Black Friday are here. Shoppers once again are poised to gobble up all the deals they — and their budgets — can handle to fulfill their holiday gift lists for others and, of course, in many cases, themselves.
But the giving, in essence, will continue in the coming weeks as the Columbus market prepares for a number of new restaurants and retail stores on its wish list, with some local and others of the chain variety.
One of the most high profile projects coming up is the debut of the home decor and accessories superstore At Home, which is moving quickly through its construction at Peachtree Mall. The 87,446-square-foot retailer has projected its opening sometime in March, but it could be serving customers a little earlier.
“I think they’re a little ahead of schedule as far as delivery of the space. That’s why we moved up the opening of the store,” said Onassis Burress, the mall’s general manager. He said At Home’s debut could be “roughly the February timeframe.”
Garden Ridge, Texas-based At Home will become the fourth anchor store for the 3131 Manchester Expressway shopping center, joining Dillard’s, JCPenney and Macy’s.
At Home touts its “everyday low pricing” selection of more than 50,000 items in its superstores, with furniture and accessories for each room of a house, as well as storage, organization, patio and garden goods. “Any Style, Any Budget, Any Reason to Redecorate” is one of the slogans it uses.
A second project now under way on Veterans Parkway in north Columbus is the relocation of the Keller Williams Realty River Cities office from its nearby office space. The company has scheduled a ribbon-cutting for the office, retail and restaurant complex on Wednesday at 3 p.m. A three-hour open house is at 3:30 p.m., with the public invited and the event “catered by celebrities,” the company said.
The property, appropriately called North Veterans Center, includes a free-standing Shrimp Basket restaurant that is moving toward completion and a Dunkin’ Donuts store with a drive-thru that is even closer to opening. The target for the doughnut shop is December, with the outlet being the fifth for the chain in the local market.
The Shrimp Basket, however, looks to be the attention-getter, with the Gulf Shores, Ala.-based company shooting for January or February to be serving hungry customers its steamed shrimp, all-you-can-eat fried fish and popcorn shrimp. The Shrimp Basket’s motto is “We’re Grillin’, Steamin’ and Fryin.’ ”
A trio of eateries are on the way across Columbus, meanwhile. They include the city’s second Chipotle Mexican Grill restaurant at Cross Country Plaza on Macon Road, with it to open in December. A Burger King also is pushing fast toward completion at the corner of Bradley Park Drive and Belfast Avenue.
Chick-fil-A also is looking to expand in the market, with the Atlanta-based chain having pulled the trigger on a new location at 2730 Manchester Expressway, the site of the former Off Price Furniture store that has now been torn down. Retail Planning Corp., an Atlanta-based real-estate company, is developing the property that will include the 4,877-square-foot Chick-fil-A. The site also has two additional sites on the market, one for a 4,250-square-foot building and another for a 1,600-square-foot tenant.
Chick-fil-A also apparently has been shopping for another location on Veterans Parkway in north Columbus. Possibilities, according to real-estate brokers, include the now-closed Ruby Tuesday restaurant location at Columbus Park Crossing and perhaps the Marvin’s Market produce store location just north of there.
The Marvin’s Market property, located across for the Stars and Strikes entertainment complex, has been sold. The produce store’s final day at the location is Dec. 23, with it planning to relocate and join Phenix Food Locker off Colin Powell Parkway in Phenix City shortly thereafter.
Finally, a Clean Eatz restaurant and meal preparation kitchen is setting up shop in the Old Town development off Veterans Parkway in north Columbus. Owners Sloan Burgess and Ashley Bader hope to have the healthy-option eatery serving customers sometime in January.