Costco in Wheaton? What About Woodies and Hot Shoppes?

Posted on January 17, 2010


Adam Pagnucco over at Maryland Politics Watch has broken a big story about Montgomery County subsidizing a Costco store to locate in Wheaton. He’s promising more details on Monday.

Seems like it would be more sensible for the county to fight to keep Costco out of Wheaton. If we have to have one, why not put it in Glenmont? Or on Rockville Pike? And let Costco pay their own way.

It’s too bad the county couldn’t spend the $4 million to bring Woodies back, but that department store is gone forever. Maybe they could at least restore the name “Wheaton Plaza.”

Perhaps Marriott (headquarters near Montgomery Mall) could be persuaded to build a new Hot Shoppes, in the retro 1950s style, of course, on Veirs Mill Road.  A Hot Shoppes might become almost a tourist attraction, in my opinion. Come to think of it, a retro Hot Shoppes would also fit in nicely near the Art Deco Silver Theater and shopping center in Silver Spring. Nostalgia! “Lost in the 50s Tonight!”

(The Silver Spring Hecht Co. building is also from the 1950s, and it’s definitely aging gracefully. Would you call the Hecht’s building Art Deco? And what would you call the architecture of the old Hot Shoppes?  The Hot Shoppes were quite similar, at least in their orange roofs, to the Howard Johnson’s restaurants. Howard Johnson’s was also represented on Veirs Mill Road, back in the  day.)

(BTW, there was a reason for the orange roofs. I don’t know if it’s scientifically proven, but the color orange makes you hungry. I think McDonald’s Golden Arches work the same magic. Modern restaurateurs are missing the boat.)

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