It's been a busy week for news about the former Food Lion grocery stores in Mount Pleasant.
Palmetto State Armory announced this week that it's still moving ahead with plans to redevelop the store in National Crossing shopping center for its outdoors shop, even after the town Planning Commission shot down its plans for a shooting range in the store.
The other shuttered Food Lion in the area at Belle Station shopping center is also being revived. The nearly 38,000-square-foot store has been subleased by Planet Fitness for its third location in the Charleston area. The value-oriented gym franchise also has clubs in West Ashley's Citadel Mall and in North Charleston's Northwoods Mall.
Jeff Yurfest of the Shopping Center Group, who brokered the deal, said Planet Fitness expects to be open in its first Mount Pleasant gym by January.
He added that since most tenants of the two shopping centers stayed in business even after their Food Lion anchors went dark, "that just shows the strength of the Mount Pleasant retail market."
Open for business
Shelmore Village, a mixed-use shopping center in Mount Pleasant that's been around for about seven years, is marking a grand opening with a ribbon-cutting ceremony Thursday.
After a slow start held up by the last recession, boutique retailers have steadily collected over the past year in the live-work development next to the Bi-Lo shopping center at S. Shelmore Boulevard and Mathis Ferry Road. Shops include Bartons Toys, which relocated from King Street; Mrs. Capper's Collectibles, which moved from Mount Pleasant Towne Centre; Shoe LaLa; and Sugar Snap Pea.
Janet Muhs recently opened Sew Much Better in Shelmore Village, where she offers sewing lessons to kids and adults. She said she loves the location across from the I'On development.
"It's very quaint," she said. "And it's family-oriented, so there are many diverse things for people to enjoy with their kids."
Mayor Linda Page will cut the ribbon at 10 a.m
The National Retail Federation announced Wednesday that it has revised its growth forecast for the industry this year. The trade organization reported in January that it expected retail sales to grow by 4.1 percent this year, but it has since narrowed its forecast to 3.6 percent.
The outlook is less robust for the year because retail sales grew by a modest 2.9 percent for the first half of the year, according to the report.
"No retailer was immune to the doldrums witnessed during the first quarter, and as a result, the year's growth trajectory was impacted," said Matthew Shay, the trade group's president and CEO.
Local toy shop Wonder Works has added a new event room at its West Ashley store at 975 Savannah Highway. Billed as the "Mega Magic Fun Lab," the new space is intended to help the retailer accommodate children's birthday parties and other in-store events. Wonder Works will unveil the new playroom July 26 with a grand opening celebration from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. The event will feature free cake and drinks, giveaways, a coloring contest with a Disney's "Frozen" theme and other children's activities.
Reach Abigail Darlington at 937-5906 and follow her on Twitter @A_Big_Gail