Wednesday, March 21, 2007

More businesses are opening in Town Square

Additional parking spaces also available

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Chris Rossi⁄The Gazette
Three new businesses, including Cosi at the corner of North Washington Street and Middle Lane in downtown Rockville, have opened in the past two weeks. Another is set to open this week.
Three new businesses and more parking spaces opened over the last week and a half in the redeveloping Rockville Town Square.

Cosi and Toy Kingdom opened early last week, while Jerry’s Subs and Pizza opened Monday.

One more business, Robeks Fruit Smoothies and Healthy Eats, is set to open Thursday at Beall and Maryland avenues. It will be the 13th Washington-area store.

Toy Kingdom, located at 36 Maryland Ave., offers a variety of gifts for boys and girls.

Cosi, located at 201 North Washington St., has a selection of soups, salads, sandwiches and baked goods. Patrons can enjoy their food in the café’s sit-down section or on the go.

Jerry’s Subs and Pizza, located at 107-A Gibbs St., features a variety of cheesesteaks, subs and New York-style pizzas. Meals can be eaten either inside the restaurant or taken home.

‘‘We think it’s the most beautiful store we’ve opened by far,” Dana Siller, director of marketing for Jerry’s Subs and Pizza, said last week.

In addition, two thirds of the parking spaces in the North Washington Street parking garage are now open to the public. At this time, there will be no charge to park, Rockville officials said.

And while the Maryland Avenue parking garage was previously only open to Rockville Library visitors, the garage is no longer restricted to those using the library. Currently, there is no charge to park.

The first retail establishment to move into Town Square was Starbucks, which opened at the corner of Maryland Avenue and Middle Lane on Feb. 20. A Starbucks coffee shop had been open in the Magruder’s shopping center on North Washington Street, which marks the western boundary of the 15-acre Town Square development also bordered by Middle Lane, Rockville Pike and Beall Avenue.

The redevelopment at Rockville Town Square was designed to bring new life to the center of town. Other than the Magruder’s shopping center, the block had featured several townhouse businesses and a gas station along Rockville Pike and an office high-rise at the corner of Rockville Pike and Middle Lane. Most of the acreage was comprised of surface parking lots.

Having recently signed a lease with Federal Realty Trust, the Rockville company that owns the site, Super Fresh grocery store will now be anchoring the new 15-acre shopping center, which is already home to the new Rockville Library and will be home to the Arts and Innovation Center, which will house VisArts at Rockville and a county-sponsored business incubator, and condominium residences.

Most of the 47 retail and restaurant companies moving in are expected to open between now and the scheduled May grand opening date. They include Bobby’s Crab Cakes, a casual seafood restaurant; Love Your Eyes, an optical store; Town Square Jewelers; Oro Pomodoro, a casual Italian restaurant; Gifford’s Ice Cream, and others.