Attention HT shoppers: Crozet store opens

photo-harris-teeter-crozetThe new Harris Teeter in Crozet provides big-city amenities like sushi in a quasi-rural setting.

An era ended in Crozet with the May 6 opening of a LEED-certified Harris Teeter, a symbol of the change in the western Albemarle village/designated growth area.

Great Eastern Managment Company has been trying to get a grocery built on the Route 250 site beside Blue Ridge Builders Supply since 1987, estimates principal Chuck Rotgin, no stranger to developments that take decades, like the company's North Pointe project.

Originally he and partner Don Wagner planned to build a Food Lion there. But as Crozet's demographics grew more upscale with fancy subdivisions like Old Trail and Grayrock, Food Lion was out and LEED-building, green-conscious Harris Teeter was in.

Wagner commends the strong support from the community in the western part of the county, and he remembers a petition drive against a grocery on Route 250 that gathered 167 signatures. Pro-grocery fans launched their own petition drive, and presented 1,387 signatures in favor of a new store to the Board of Supervisors, recounts Wagner.

The new market will use 50 percent less water than a typical Harris Teeter, and 25 percent less energy. And the store brings 60 new jobs.

Not all Crozetians are happy with their town's newest addition. Count author Marlene Condon among the unimpressed, for she sees the project as further evidence of Crozet trading in its own identity for that of its more cosmopolitan neighbor to the east.

"The only reason that Harris Teeter is coming into existence," Condon writes in a recent letter to the Crozet Gazette. "is to provide food for folks in the new developments–- mini-Charlottesvilles–- surrounding Crozet. Most, if not all of these residents probably shop now in Charlottesville because–- let's face it–- they are city folks, not country."

Despite such dissent, longtime owner of the property Preston Stallings is happy to finally have a tenant on the property, which includes an 11,000-square-foot retail office space and a soon-to-break-ground BB&T bank. "I told Chuck I'd like to have a little rent coming in during my lifetime," he says. "It's been 20-some years."

And Harris Teeter is fine with him, as long as it pays its rent.


GreatValu has been charging Harris Teeter prices for years. At least now we can get a quality store for the same money. I am concerned about the impact on employment though -- there must be fifty people working in GV?

They don't serve breadsticks, just greasy bread.

Harris Teeter > Wal-Mart.

If I want to get jumped, support outsourcing of jobs, or you know, get swine flu or something, then I'll go to Wal-Mart.

Robert Duvall knows the deal.

The store will use 50% less water than a typical Harris Teeter according to this article. Another sign that our water plan needs to be re-evalutated. This is the future-- water conservation-- and we'll be seeing more of this with each new project.

Put an Olive Garden next to it and I could move to Crozet now.

I would like to know which county official allowed the "scenic designation" of 250 to lapse? Any answers?

"Most, if not all of these residents probably shop now in Charlottesville becauseââ?¬â? let’s face itââ?¬â? they are city folks, not country.”

Ummmm...residents of Crozet shop in Charlottesville until now because there was no place to shop in Crozet! Let's face it: they need to eat, and there are some things you just can't get at the IGA.

No one from Charlottesville is city folk. Because, surprise, Charlottesville is not a city.

If it is, that must make Roanoke a sprawling metropolis.

Also, cities build roads. Charlottesville just talks about building roads.

Walmart all the way baby.

"this new establishment is providing much needed jobs to the area "

Well, obviously no one wants anyone to be unemployed. Least of all the people in the mini-Charlottesvilles. Could the ugly grocery store complex (it's ugly, right?) have been built inside one of those subdivisions, though?

If I hear the words LEED or Green Building again I'm gonna burn some tires in my backyard. Bring marshmallows.

If this Harris Teeter is the quality of the two other HT stores in the area, then the people in Crozet are lucky to have them so near. The Barracks Road store is often crowded due to it's location, but that store and the one located in Town Square on 29N (my favorite) offer what I look for, good customer service with friendly employees. I don't see that HT prices are that much higher than other stores given that I can often get in and out in 1/2 the time (and my time is valuable)because they keep enough staff available to work their checkout lines.

ââ?¬Å?Most, if not all of these residents probably shop now in Charlottesville becauseââ?¬â? let’s face itââ?¬â? they are city folks, not country.”

That is funny. C'ville is such a big city and Crozet is the last untamed frontier.

Olive GArden? Yeah!!! Does anyone know when it's coming?

Olive Garden along with Cracker Barrell will never come to Albemarle County because the Planning Commission won't allow the type of signage they require in order to draw people to their establishments. They need signs that people can see when they are entering from any main road i.e. Route 250 or I-64. Notice the signs when you travel to other areas that have these establishments. Albemarle County will never allow them. Albemarle County is too particular about business signs which is why so many businesses are going out of business!

Is the Don Wagner (developer) mentioned in the article above, the same Don Wagner that serves on the Alb Co Service Authority board-- or do I have my names mixed up?

Can I get some more breadsticks please?

RC, same Don Wagner

Oh I don't know about Albemarle voting Olive Garden down.
The county has allowed all of the ugly car places on Pantops.Doesn't one of them have a bright blue roof?

Man these Olive Garden comments are getting old.