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Archive for the ‘Forum Drive’ tag

JP's 4 Corners Southwest Grill, 150 Forum Drive: September 2017   2 comments

Posted at 11:29 pm in closing

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JP's 4 Corners was the followup operation to Arizona's and kept some of the same menu after the switchover. Since you could get a burger there, I would have been happy enough to try it out, but in the event never got around to it, especially as both Five Guys and Red Robin are also located at Sandhill.

I have to say that the reviews at Open Table are interesting to say the least, and almost prompt me to add a Sign #7 to the Signs Your Favorite Restaurant Is About to Close list:

7) Your restaurant is in Columbia South Carolina, and has no air conditioning during the month from Mid July to Mid August.

As far as I can tell, the Greenville location is still open, or at least no reviewers have noted it as closed yet. I believe that one also was once an Arizona's. The Web Site does appear to be down however as at least one review does note.

(Hat tip to commenter Steve)

Written by ted on September 18th, 2017

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Regions Bank, 149 Forum Drive: January 2017   3 comments

Posted at 1:41 am in closing

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I was at Sandhill the other day and noticed that this Regions Bank on the outer perimeter was closed.

I see a google review from four months ago indicating it was already closed then, so I'm putting the date as January 2017 though that may be after the actual date. I've always thought Regions Bank was an odd name. It was especially odd when BOA was still Nations Bank because then it sounded kind of copycat. Now it just seems nonspecific.

UPDATE 26 June 2017 -- As reported in the comments, almost open again as a Navy Federal Credit Union:
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Written by ted on May 12th, 2017

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H. H. Gregg, 230 Forum Drive: May 2017   7 comments

Posted at 11:34 pm in closing

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I was sure I had done a closing for 230 Forum Drive before, but looking at Alphabetical Closings, I don't see anything.

At any rate, H. H. Gregg is the latest casualty of the ongoing Amazon-era retail meltdown. With the closing of Circuit City, I thought that the appliance & electronics big box market would be able to support the two remaining stores, Gregg and Best Buy, but in the event I guess not. For that matter, it still remains to be seen if *one* store is sustainable long term.

I believe this is the only H. H. Gregg I have ever been in, and I was only in it once. I wasn't looking for anything in particular, just checking it out, and as I recall, my impression was that I liked Best Buy better.

Here is a very interesting article from The Indianapolis Business Journal about this Indianapolis based company, its storied history, and the path to bankruptcy this March 7th and then quickly after that, the slide into liquidation:

In the early 1980s, when Detroit-based appliance retailer Fretter Inc. entered Indianapolis and challenged HHGregg on its home turf, HHGregg bought full-page ads in the Detroit newspapers hawking its own merchandise and offering free shipping.

Those were heady days for HHGregg, which built a loyal following in Indianapolis with an unwavering focus on customer service; an army of well-paid, full-time commissioned salespeople; and an avalanche of advertising that resonated with consumers.

It was a winning formula for founders H.H. and Fansy Gregg, who opened the first store at 4930 N. Keystone Ave. in 1955, and for the family members who helped build the chain to more than 200 locations in the decades that followed.

“The customer-first attitude came from Mr. and Mrs. Gregg,” said Ken Beckley, an HHGregg executive from 1983 to 2001 who also was the face of the company’s advertising. “When I was there, we preached to employees that job No. 1 is to take good care of the customer. If you do that, profits will follow. We never put profits first. We put customers first, and it paid off.”

The strategy helped fell a long list of rivals—including Fretter and Highland Superstores Inc., another Detroit chain that dove into Indianapolis in the early 1980s. Both firms later skidded into bankruptcy, with a Highland executive calling Indianapolis its “Death Valley.” In 1998, Circuit City Stores Inc., then a retail powerhouse, arrived in Indianapolis, only to land in liquidation a decade later.

Now, done in by a long list of problems—including overexpansion and a collapse in sales of consumer electronics, once its biggest business—HHGregg is joining the trash heap of failed appliance and electronics retailers.

The company’s demise has been unfolding in slow motion for years, but the final unraveling came with breathtaking speed.

Reminds me of Hemingway's famous quote.

Aside from Gregg, this can't be very good for Sandhill either.

Gold's Gym, 226 Forum Drive: 1 December 2015 (flag change)   no comments

Posted at 1:08 am in closing

Written by ted on January 9th, 2016

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Arizona's, 150 Forum Drive: Jule 2014   6 comments

Posted at 11:06 pm in Uncategorized

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I did not know that Arizona's was a chain, but they had at least two restaurants in South Carolina, one here at Sandhill and the other in Greenville. Both were bought out in late July by a North Carolina outfit and rebranded as JP's 4 Corners.

When Arizona's opened, I looked over the menu, and could not see a reason to go, and so never did.

Apparently the general concept has not changed a lot:

JP’s has maintained 90 percent of the original Arizona’s menu, but, under the direction of executive chef Tony Aponte, has some new additions.

The new menu ups the steak concept by adding three new signature steaks to the original one, each with a unique rub. Each is a reference to the four states that make up the “4 corners,” from which the restaurant takes its name — Arizona (original), New Mexico (cayenne and chili), Colorado (black peppercorn with blue cheese butter) and Utah (cinnamon spice crusted).

But JP’s is about more than just steak, Lawrence says. One of the restaurant’s new features is a house-made veggie burger that combines black beans and sweet potato and is topped with an agave sweetened chipotle-lime cream.

Looking at the menu, I get the same feeling I had looking at Arizona's menu: How is this Southwestern?

Western, I certainly see, but I thought Southwestern was supposed to have a dash of Mexican. That's got to be more than just invoking chipolte in a sauce. The Free Times in fact lists JP's under Mexican, but don't see it.

(Hat tip to commenter Jason)

Written by ted on October 1st, 2014

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Le Peep, 110 Forum Drive #7: October 2013 (open again)   30 comments

Posted at 12:16 am in Uncategorized

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It hardly seems possible to me that Le Peep was at Sandhill for the five years that their closing letter claims, but looking back I see that in fact The Italian Pie closed in the fall of 2008.

I'm not a morning person by nature, and Le Peep closed at 2pm, so I never got a chance to check it out, but it seems to have been a well regarded breakfast spot. The door letter implies that the space remains under the same ownership and that something new may be forthcoming. In the meantime, the chain just opened a location on Gervais Street in the old Mezza space.

I have to say posting a listing of all the other Sandhill restaurants is a classy touch.

(Hat tip to commenter JB)

UPDATE 24 January 2014 This story from The State makes it clear that this Le Peep was moved to the Vista, rather than the Vista operation being a new one, so I have updated the post title to add "(moved)":

UPDATE 19 Aug 2014 -- This location is up and running again. Not sure what the story is, but good!

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Written by ted on October 23rd, 2013

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AAA Car Care Center, 130 Forum Drive Suite 13: 23 September 2011   2 comments

Posted at 11:40 pm in Uncategorized

This AAA Car Care Center was at the Village At Sandhill on the Bi-Lo side of the stores. I notice that they say they are moving to 4526 Forest Drive, but I think it would be more accurate to say "consolidating", since as far as I know, this place was open along with Forest Drive, until Forest Drive burned down so the end result when Forest Drive re-opens will still be one location where there were originally two. (The sign from the daytime set of pix is more clear).

Written by ted on October 2nd, 2011

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Ashley Furniture Homestore, 226 Forum Drive (Village at Sandhill): September 2008 (ownership)   22 comments

Posted at 11:40 pm in Uncategorized

OK, I'm not entirely sure what happened here (housing market crash related perhaps?), but it has the earmarks of being a big mess both for customers and the new owners, who have apparently put themselves in the unenviable position of running a store under the same name while having to explain to customers how they have no connection with the previous owners nor any responsibility to make customers whole vis-a-vis their dealings with same. I give them points for apparently making a good faith effort in that regard though. And where does this other company TRS fit into the picture?

I believe this is the third store on the highly visible left-front side of Sandhills to have something bad happen to it after The Atlanta Bread Company and Sofa Express.

UPDATE:

On the night of Saturday 25 Oct 2008 on my way back from Red Robin, I saw a new sign on Ashley. It was an official notice from the Sherrif or a Magistrate to the effect that Ashley either had to pay their rent or show cause why they shouldn't be evicted. I didn't have my camera with me, and on Sunday the 26th, it was gone

UPDATE 12 April 2010: Added full street address to post title.

UPDATE 21 May 2010 -- Apparently this place will become a Gold's Gym. I had previously reported that the Gold's would be going into the neighboring former Sofa Express location, but that seems to be a temporary presale operation only, with the actual gym going here:

UPDATE 14 July 2010: The Gold's Gym setup is done, and the temporary gym/presale in the old Sofa Express building is closed, with the new gym now running in this building.

Written by ted on September 27th, 2008

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The Italian Pie, 110 Forum Drive #7 (Village at Sandhill): 2008   9 comments

Posted at 5:31 pm in Uncategorized

I like The Italian Pie, though I have only eaten at their Forest Drive location. My only problem with that place is their initial violation of Ted's Rules for Restaurants #1": Honor Your Posted Hours.

For a while they were open until 10:30pm Thurs-Sat and I got there at 9:30 to hear the dreaded: "Well, we weren't very busy, so we closed the kitchen". After that, they took down their posted closing hours, and I can generally only get there for lunch now.

I don't know much about the Sandhill location. Since Forest Drive is so much closer, I never made it out there for a meal. I did read in The State a while back that they were reducing their open hours, is Signs Your Favorite Restaurant is About to Close #1. Apparently after that, they reduced their open hours down to zero.

Judging from the salt shakers still on the tables, the end probably came fairly quickly. It looks like a French-ish (I add the "ish" because of the "Pepe Le Pew" spellings on their sign) place is to open there soon. Perhaps they can open before the new Panera Bread, which seems to have been in the offing for a lot longer than necessary now. Maybe they're looking for salt shakers...

Written by ted on September 16th, 2008

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The Grilled Chese Company, 110 Forum Drive #1 (Village at Sandhill): 2007   13 comments

Posted at 11:51 pm in Uncategorized

Here's the thing. If you're going to call yourself The Grilled Cheese Company, you ought to have really great grilled cheese sandwiches.

I was feeling pretty low last year with a bad cold (which wasn't getting any better as in the end it turned out to be a sinus infection and to need antibiotics..), and I wanted some comfort food. A good grilled cheese sandwich sounded like it would really fill the bill, so I went out to Sandhill.

I guess what I was subconsciously expecting was some sort of deluxe affair with two or three kinds of cheese grilled between Texas toast. What I got was apparently a Kraft Processed American Cheese Food single between two slices of Sunbeam, and it was a considerable disappointment in a day that was already not going well.

Read whatever you'd like into my judgement given my general maliase and grumpiness that day, but I see the place is now gone, so I'm thinking that even if everyone else liked what they got, they also realized they could do the exact same thing at home with the ingredients they already had.

Antibiotics on the other hand, are great.

UPDATE 15 May 2010: Added full street address, tags.

UPDATE 25 February 2014 -- It's now a kids' gym, My Gym:

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Written by ted on July 5th, 2008

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