Rooftops drive retail

The Daniel Island Co.'s Carnes Crossroads planned community (above) is one of the big housing developments near Summerville that are drawing new retail investment in the area. Others include Meadwestvaco's Nexton and Gramling Brothers' Cane Bay Plantation.

Paul Zoeller

Summerville has suddenly picked up the pace with new retail development, some of them tying their future to several big housing and commercial developments cropping up to the east of Interstate 26 and Highway 17-A.

At least seven new shops will open soon, and another new shopping center is on the way.

Gramling Brothers Real Estate & Development Co. will begin work in the next 90 days on a nearly 60,000-square-foot shopping center where the former Strobel Tire, Auto and Truck Service stood at 1101 N. Main St., just south of Berlin G. Myers Parkway, according to Gramling’s Mikell Harper. The six-acre parcel will include a 40,000- to 50,000-square-foot grocery store and another anchor. Speculation is that Earth Fare is an option. An Earth Fare spokeswoman did not return a call or email for comment Wednesday.

Look for the project’s completion in the first part of 2014.

Gramling soon will open Azalea Station down the street in front of Azalea Square Shopping Center. The 12,700-square-foot Azalea Station will include Newk’s, Jos. A. Bank, Smashburger and European Wax Center, just behind a Mellow Mushroom under construction in the old Perkins Restaurant space.

Also in Summerville, two new businesses will hold ribbon-cuttings this week.

Southern Sisters Bakers & Confections will snip the ribbon at 2 p.m. today at 140 Hemphill Court, and Lowcountry Uniforms will cut the ribbon at noon Friday at 330 E. 5th North St. Refreshments will be provided.

After 31 years of serving hamburgers and other items, Sue and Johnny Thigpen are retiring and closing Johnny’s Olde Village Grill at 1042 E. Montague Ave. in North Charleston’s Olde Village. Friday is the last day.

The restaurant normally closes at 3 p.m., but because it hasn’t restocked a lot of items ahead of the closing, it could go dark earlier, Sue Thigpen said. The couple live above the restaurant but might gut it and turn it into office or retail space, unless someone wants to lease or buy the building, she said.

“I won’t miss the drudgery of the work, but I will miss all of the people we have seen over the years,” Sue Thigpen said.

Andolini’s Pizza at 967 Folly Road on James Island is now closed. The pizzeria shut its doors last week after 10 years.

Its four other pizza shops remain open in downtown Charleston, Mount Pleasant, West Ashley and North Charleston.

Austin’s Food and Drink is now serving at 116 Spring St. in the space formerly occupied by Black Bean Co., which moved to King Street. It offers sandwiches, salads, soups, homemade desserts and fruit smoothies, and hopes to soon be serving beer and wine. It’s open from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

Verde, a specialty salad restaurant with a shop in downtown Charleston, opened a second location Wednesday at 730 Coleman Blvd. in Brookgreen Shopping Center in Mount Pleasant. Its create-your-own salad bar offers more than 45 ingredients, and the shop offers the same menu items as the peninsula site. The Mount Pleasant shop will also offer beach bag specials in a tote bag. It includes a wrap, chips and bottled water.

It’s open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. Jennifer and Sam Ferrebee are the shop owners and operators.

Americans will spend a little bit more on dad this year. The average person will shell out $119.84 on gifts, up from $117.14 last year, according to the National Retail Federation’s 2013 Father’s Day spending survey. Total spending is expected to reach $13.3 billion.

Do you know of a business that is opening, closing or expanding? Reach Warren L. Wise at 937-5524 or