Local Commentary

A Penny for Your Thoughts: News of Greater Falls Church

prenny-fcnpOne of the few rainstorms this month didn’t dampen the enthusiasm for the Grand Opening of the newly renovated and expanded Home Depot at Seven Corners last week. The store needed more space for its design center – appliances, lighting, kitchen and bath fixtures – and moved into the former Room Store space at the center. The existing store’s footprint was reconfigured, and a new ramp installed to account for the grade change between the two units. A new entry to the design center welcomes shoppers without having to go through the main store.

Hard to believe, perhaps, but Home Depot began its journey at Seven Corners in 1997. The new store reflects a substantial re-investment in the community that was not without its challenges. Fairfax County determined that the proposed expansion required that Home Depot go through an extensive regulatory and community process for approvals, including the Baileys Crossroads Seven Corners Revitalization Corporation, the Mason District Land Use Committee, the Planning Commission, and the Board of Supervisors. According to Home Depot staff and management, the effort was worth it, since the Seven Corners Home Depot is one of the highest grossing Home Depots in the mid-Atlantic.

Home Depot openings are a good deal more than the usual ribbon cutting. In fact, the traditional ribbon was replaced by a large 2 x 8 board, signed by all the store staff. The challenge was to use a hand-held power saw to cleave the board in two. Even with a starter cut, it took three of us a few minutes to cut through the remaining board; the result, admittedly, was less than expert carpentry!

Commercial reinvestment, especially in the county’s designated revitalization areas, has many benefits for the community. Shopping at local merchants closer to home saves time, energy, and greenhouse gases. A portion of the state sales tax is credited to the point-of-sale jurisdiction, so shopping in Fairfax County provides additional revenue that can offset the tax burden on the residential real estate taxpayer. Why shop in another jurisdiction and contribute to its tax base? Shop in Fairfax County!

The Annandale Shopping Center has announced that Aldi, a European discount grocery chain, will open a store next year in the space formerly occupied by Bloom, a defunct Food Lion brand. A new occupant for the location at Columbia Pike and Gallows Road has long been an open question for residents. Now we know.

The next few weekends are filled with plans for neighborhood block parties and fall picnics. Please be extra careful when driving on local streets. Some may be blocked off from traffic, but others may simply have more folks enjoying neighborhood camaraderie on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon. The speed limit on residential streets is 25 mph.

 


 Penny Gross is the Mason District Supervisor, in the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors. She may be emailed at [email protected]