June 17, 2024
Annapolis, US 84 F

Wegmans pulls out of Annapolis, blames County

Well, it was nice a nice thought while it lasted. The long anticipated Wegmans will no longer be coming to Annapolis.  The location has been removed from their website and we obtained a screen shot from their intranet confirming the move. Wegmans has placed the blame squarely on working with Anne Arundel County.

The store was to occupy the former USi property on Riva Road across from the Annapolis Towne Centre. Eye On Annapolis initially broke this news back in September of 2018, and the location was officially added to their website in August of this year! The store would have brought more than 100 permanent jobs to the area once complete.

We have reached out to both Wegmans and the County to get more specifics.

UPDATE:  Wegmans spokesperson Valerie Fox responded to our inquiry with the same message posted on their intranet.

Hi John,

We previously announced plans for a store on Riva Road in Annapolis, Maryland, that will no longer move forward. After more than a year of working with the Anne Arundel County planning department toward a mutually acceptable plan, we were unable to reach an agreement that made sense for this project in terms of visibility, traffic circulation, and cost. Therefore, we have decided to withdraw our application for this site.

UPDATE 2:  From Steve Kaii-Ziegler the Anne Arundel County Director of Planning and Zoning:

On November 5th 2019 Wegmans informed county planners that it was withdrawing its application to build a 91,057 square foot store that would occupy the former USI property on Riva Road directly across the Annapolis Towne Center in the Parole Growth Management Area (PGMA).

The Office of Planning and Zoning has been in discussions with Wegmans for approximately a year, working with Wegmans to help it achieve its business plan while maintaining the integrity of the goals and standards of the PGMA. Unfortunately, Wegmans business plan called for a one story, big box design with a huge parking lot that was more suitable for a rural or suburban setting. The parking plan proposed a sea of surface parking (650 spaces) in the front of their building which is approximately 200 spaces more than the county requires.

Office of Planning and Zoning provided Wegmans with several alternative design options that would have better connected the store to the Riva Road corridor and been compatible with the adjacent town center. Wegmans was unwilling to adequately address those issues and, unfortunately, we were not able to reach a consensus on the design.

The Office of Planning and Zoning is disappointed that Wegmans has apparently made a decision to withdraw their application. Despite their decision, we remain committed to assisting Wegmans should they reconsider their current position.

County Executive Pittman posted the following to his Facebook page:

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