by Danielle Walker
Target plans to open a fourth location in Virginia Beach by fall of next year. The mega-retailer will expand to Pembroke Mall, moving into Regal Cinemas 8's space.
Management at Pembroke Mall was tight-lipped, directing questions on the plans to Target. Sarah Van Nevel, a spokeswoman for Target, said that the company usually waits to share store opening information until a year before opening.
The plan for the store was brought before the city's zoning board by attorney R.J. Nutter II of Troutman Sanders. Nutter represents Pembroke Enterprises Inc., Pembroke Mall's owner.
Nutter said one thing is for certain: "Pembroke will not start tearing anything down until this is a done, announced deal."
Target had been looking at the site to expand in Virginia Beach, where there are three Target stores, he said.
Yard House, a restaurant and pub, plans to open its first Virginia location at the Virginia Beach Town Center in November. The Irvine, Calif.-based company was founded in 1996 in Long Beach, Calif., by restaurateur Steele Platt. He previously started a bar in Colorado called The Boiler Room.
Platt, the company's chairman, eventually partnered with Harald Herrmann, now president and CEO, and Carlito Jocson, the corporate executive chef, to launch the Yard House. The eatery features American cuisine and as well as an extensive draft beer selection.
Paperwhyte, an in-store printing and custom-invitation retailer, could move from its 610 High St. address in Portsmouth if it's building is sold. The store owners, who are looking to sell the property, are willing to stay at the location if possible, and plan to stay on High Street if a move is necessary.
Co-owners Kay Carl and Dorothy "Dottie" Lindley started the business in 2004 at 628 High St. They moved to the current location in 2006.
Lindley explained why they've now decided to sell the building: "We are looking to reduce our overhead.
"We've owned the building for about four years, and if we sold it and the new owner wanted to rent it to us, we would stay," she said. If not, they plan to relocate somewhere else on High Street.
There have recently been a number of closings along the street, including Gosport Tavern, Angry Adam's Wine and Cheese Spot, and, Next, an upscale consignment shop.
"Both my partner and I live in the residential area in Olde Towne, and that was sort of the point, to live close to where we work. And we like Olde Towne," she said.
Lindley also said that while there are plenty of restaurants along High Street, she hopes more retailers will come to the area. When visitors go anywhere, "one of the main things they like to do is shop - shop and eat," she said.
MacArthur Center's food court is undergoing a significant change starting Mach 13. Several court vendors in the Norfolk mall will be replaced throughout the next few months, according to a release from the shopping center.
The change comes after the expiration of the lease between the Norfolk mall and Host Marriott Services.
Among new tenants slated for the food court are Panda Express and Sakura Elite Sushi. The Looney Tunes Play Port, also located in the food court, will stay open during construction.
In the meantime, shoppers can anticipate special offers from food vendors, while closings occur and construction is completed.
Bootleggers, a country-western restaurant that opened at 257 Granby St. in Norfolk last summer, is being turned into an establishment called Pure. Tommy Arney, who managed the restaurant, also owns Havana, a restaurant next door.
Bonnie Schule, Downtown Norfolk Council's retail recruiter, said via e-mail that the owners are in the process of changing over the permits with the city, for the name change.
Arney's son and daughter, Ryan and Ashlee, owned Bootleggers while he was general manager.
A sign for Pure is on display at 257 Granby, but Arney could not be reached for comment about an opening date and details on the change.
A.J. Wright at Victory Crossing Shopping Center in Portsmouth will undergo a retrofit to become a Marshalls, another clothing retailer under parent company TJX Cos. Inc. Marshalls anticipates an April opening for the store, and has been in communication with Portsmouth's department of economic development for some time on the matter.
Marshalls can now enter the city without development of a new store, which was previously in talks.
The plans for conversion came after a companywide decision to close all A.J. Wright stores.
The other Hampton Roads A.J. Wright location, in Norfolk, will also be converted into a Marshalls in April. TJX also owns retailers T.J. Maxx and HomeGoods. nib
Changes at MacArthur Center
Vendors staying open: