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Unwelcome changes at the Shockoe Valley Market

January 4, 2012 7:56 am by

A local resident sent this in overnight:

What is happening to the Shockoe Valley Market on Marshall & 18th Street? Though the market has been open for only three short months or so, it seems that the concept around which it was opened is already changing. It was exciting to see a new store opening in the neighborhood that was actually meant to be a “corner market” – not just another store relying solely upon single malt liquor, fortified wine, cigarette, and lottery ticket sales.

When the store opened, a variety of products were offered such as fresh produce, specialty items like soymilk and European confections, coffee, a hot food bar, an ice cream case, and a deli case. It appeared that the owners, with good sense, intended to cater to the diversity of the neighborhood.

Now, with the disappearance of the coffee stand, grocery items, deli case, and the like – along with replenishing the produce bins with beer, and the addition of a display case full of pipes, screens, and bongs – it seems that the owners have abruptly changed their minds about their desired target group. What’s more, it is disconcerting to hear rumors that the owners are actually planning to open a bar inside the store.

I ask: WTC – why the change? At the start, the store was not ideally laid out, but it had a lot of potential. In establishing any successful business, patience and consistency are key. Trying out a concept for only three months & scrapping it does not inspire confidence or loyalty in clientele. The current situation with Shockoe Valley Market leaves the distinct impression of the old “bait and switch” routine.


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