BJ’s Opening in FC Pushed Back to Mid-October; Mad Fox Opens July 12

The monthly update from the City of Falls Church’s Economic Development Office (EDO) reports that construction days have pushed back the prospective opening of the BJ’s Wholesale Warehouse outlet on Wilson Blvd. to early or mid October, two months later than projected recently. Also, prospects for a new tenant at the soon-to-be-vacated Original Pancake House (OPH) site in the Broaddale Plaza may also have to be put off to October, as OPH is experiencing permit delays from Fairfax County for its new location. According to the EDO, a “letter of intent” for locating to the site has been submitted, with a second expected soon.

However, the EDO reports that the much-anticipated Mad Fox Brewery at 444 W. Broad has received a certificate of occupancy, has begun its brewing process, and is slated to open July 12. With $3 million in start-up tenant improvements invested, the business has begun hiring, including of a number of students from George Mason High School, according to reports. In the Spectrum residential condos above the Mad Fox, 58 units have settled (out of 181 total), including 33 “Pathway to Ownership” units.

The 800 W. Broad (“Flower”) building will be 100 percent occupied, the EDO reports, as soon as the Sfizi Cafe and the NVS Kitchen & Bath receive back approvals for permits they have applied for at the F.C. City Hall. A new lease for use of the former Symms site on East Broad is “anticipated soon,” the EDO says, while a new “Latin restaurant” has received a business license to open at the former Taco Laredo location in Hillwood Ave. The Commissioner of the Revenue’s office reports that 21 new business licences have been issued in the City since May 5, including five meals tax-generating businesses (Mad Fox, Chipotle, B.J’s, Pizzeria Orso and the new 306 Hillwood restaurant) 10 retail merchants, and eight professional or service businesses.

While the Pearson Square apartments on S. Maple are 98 percent occupied, minor modifications to the ground-floor retail spaces have been made to attract smaller tenants, and a broker’s event to promote the leasing of retail space there is slated for the new, next-door Pizzeria Orso in September. At the Byron, delays in the occupancy of ground floor retail space are attributed to market conditions and technical issues applying to zoning and occupancy of the vacant spaces, but in the meantime, Cosi is now opening at 6:30 a.m. for breakfast. Kennedy’s Natural Foods has a new owner in the West Falls Plaza, and the City is still awaiting receipt of a site plan submission from the BB&T Bank, which has already received a special use permit for a drive through bank at the location of the former Chicken Out.