Unlike Fresh Market, Harris Teeter is Poised to Deliver
By Stephen Siegel
Falls Church Times Staff
July 26, 2016
The Fresh Market may have declined to follow through on its letter of intent to locate in the new Reserve at Tinner Hill project on South Washington Street, but another upscale grocery just a few blocks away is expected to open its doors Wednesday.
That upscale grocery is the Harris Teeter, which has leased most of the ground floor at developer Rushmark’s new West Broad building, located at 301 W. Broad Street, on the site of the old post office and Anthony’s Italian restaurant.
The new supermarket will bring yet another grocer to the Falls Church City market, which currently boasts just Giant Foods inside the City limits, but Safeway, Whole Foods, Trader Joes, and Shoppers Food Warehouse just beyond.
It also will create a new amenity for the residents of the West Broad building, who have been moving in floor by floor since the winter. There is underground parking in the building for the store’s customers.
The complex is the first new mixed-use project completed since Northgate on North Washington Street, and also is one of the biggest. Reaching close to 90 feet tall, it features about 290 one and two bedroom units with sizes ranging from 747 to 1,274 square feet.
The project was controversial from the beginning, both because of its size and its location: it was very close to some of the Winter Hill townhouses, especially those that sit on the east side of Annandale Road, and residents there were concerned about having the building towering over them, as well as noise from the loading docks, among other issues.
The building does tower over them; that much cannot be disputed. One can see down to the Winter Hill rooftops and into their yards from West Broad’s second floor community lounge. But while the decision to build the project may have been, and may still be, controversial, what is probably not controversial is that the building is very high quality and quite beautiful inside.
The lobby is ornate, features a large fireplace, and has a very contemporary appearance. The model apartments continue the theme, with stainless appliances and dark, espresso cabinetry and flooring.
The one bedroom model is small, offering 747 square feet, and is offered for a price that may seem shocking to Falls Church City residents. The rent is $1,985, plus an annual $450 fee that pays for the common amenities, which include indoor and outdoor entertaining spaces on the second floor. Utilities also are extra, as is the underground parking. So a one bedroom in the building will run a tenant well over $2,000 per month if they sign up for the parking.
The two bedroom model was 1,237 square feet (although some other units are slightly larger) and is a far more functional floorplan than the one bedroom. And its rental rate reflects that. The cost to move in to such a unit is $3,120, plus the annual fee, utilities, and parking.
The first residents began moving into the building Jan. 20. It also will feature a Starbucks Coffee, even though there is a Starbucks a block away. That may make more sense than it appears, because the existing Starbucks is frequently quite crowded.
There’s one other retail space in the building, for which the developers are seeking a restaurant. But the space has not been leased yet.
By Stephen Siegel
July 26, 2016