Tuesday, January 22, 2008

east county in review: nothing to do with east county edition

LIQUIDATED! International Furniture Liquidators has been given the boot from "Wheaton Mall", or so says this sign in the median of Veirs Mill Road.

- Just Up The Pike has a guest post on The Abundant Artist, written by Portland-based actor and blogger Cory, about the Death Star and gentrification in Silver Spring. Cory, who writes extensively on artist housing throughout the country, invited me to write a piece after reading last month's brief series on Arts District Hyattsville.

- After three years of selling cheap, strange, or cheap and strange furniture in the former Hecht's at Wheaton Plaza, IFL may be leaving the mall in favor of . . . something else. I saw this sign on Veirs Mill Road while going to work in Rockville last weekend. Any store with the word "liquidation" in its name likes to use the "store closing" angle to drag in customers who'd otherwise assume they had a lifetime of bargain-basement furniture ahead of them. (This is not unlike the tactic used by the rug store at Colesville and Fenton - currently American Apparel - whose windows proclaimed "STORE CLOSING" for several years before they actually did.)

I'd be very excited if this were not a hoax but, in fact, a sign (ha! ha!) of better things for Wheaton (Plaza, or Westfield Wheaton if you insist, but please don't call it "Wheaton Mall," because it just makes you look like you're not from around here.) That entire end of the mall has been dying since Hecht's was snapped up by Macy's in 2005, right after Macy's opened their new store in Wheaton Plaza. On the other hand, they might pull a Fair Oaks and just open another Macy's in the space. Very unimaginative.

- Rethink College Park is abuzz with news that the University of Maryland's gotten the MTA to draw a new Purple Line route away from Campus Drive, the school's main drag, with the Post taking note of it as well. The new, southerly alignment cuts across the center of campus and right behind my apartment building. Wow! The Purple Line could be in my backyard! (Never mind, of course, that I'll long have graduated by then.) If I decide to take this opportunity to become a real, honest-to-goodness NIMBY, all I can say is: Move over, Pam Browning!


Jacob said...

Has IFL really been open for three years? It seems shorter than that.

From what I've heard, yes, it really is closing, and will be replaced with a Kohl's.

Sligo said...

I wonder if they'd light the purple line on fire after the basketball team wins/loses against Duke.

stopthepurplemonster said...

Why not reroute the Purple Line away from the sensitive environment in Sligo Creek and Rock Creek Park and along the Capitol Crescent Trail. Why is University Of Maryland higher up in the decision latter than regular citizens in Chevy Chase, Silver Spring, Takoma Park that oppose this destructive trolley line that will be obsolete within a decade or so.

crashing-xombie said...

I love your blog, especially the spin on the metro and purple line. For some reason, I find the Wheaton 'mall' abominably odious. I hope they raze the whole thing to ground and erect a more tolerable eyesore. (This is quite uncharitable-but there's no harm wishing that Beltway Plaza and Wheaton mall morph overnight into a Tyson's)

Sligo said...

Hell, compared to Beltway Plaza, "Wheaton Mall" IS Tyson's. Only without a Banana Republic.

At least Westfield Shoppingtown Wheaton has had a major overhaul. Beltway Plaza still looks the same as when I saw Top Gun there.

WashingtonGardener said...

As long as Wheaton has the mega-Target, I'll go there still -- once Target moves to DC or closer to downtown SS, I'll have no reason to ever venture to Wheaton again.
LOL on Beltway Plaza - how DOES it stay in business? Just astounding.
STPM, MANY "regular citizens" of SS, CC, and TP want the PL and we want it built on the land we MC taxpayers purchased for it decades ago i.e. the CCT.