Jackie Waynick isn’t the only one at Emory Point who says that business is slow. Very slow.
To her and the rest of the open retailers in the still-developing complex located across the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) on Clifton Road, construction is their worst enemy and their best friend.
“Horrible, disastrous, treacherous,” Waynick, store manager of the recently-opened Lizard Thicket, said to describe the construction.
Waynick said a view from Clifton Rd. of Emory Point doesn’t visibly showcase the open stores in the second block of the center.
Passing traffic can only see the buzz of construction, “Opening Soon” signs and windows that look into empty, grey rooms.
To make matters worse, according to Fab’rik’s store manager Ali Veremakis, the community just doesn’t know that some stores at Emory Point are already open.
Dry cleaner Carriage Cleaners and four clothing retailers – Jos. A. Bank, Ann Taylor Loft, Fab’rik and Lizard Thicket – have seen little business despite a social media push.
But Waynick knows that as soon as the workers finish construction and trucks and cranes make their way out of the complex, business will inevitably come.
“I think the center is going to be amazing,” Waynick said. “This area needed something like this really, really bad … It’s just a matter of getting all these cranes and trucks out of the way.”
Waynick said that she expects business to really pick up speed given the number of people in nearby locations like the CDC and Emory University.
Until that time comes, an overall sense of excitement will have to keep store managers at bay.
Schon Cotton, store manager of Jos. A. Bank, reverberated that sentiment.
She said that any community members that have walked into the store were excited to learn that her store is located here and ready for business.
“It’s a good hub between the Highlands and Decatur,” Veremakis said. She and her employee Amy Thomas said this will be an “Atlantic station-esque” one-stop shop. They have already been in contact with Emory’s sororities for promotions.
“I think the best thing about it is that it is such a diverse area,” Waynick said. “But they all kind of have this little center in common.”
Until then, stores already open will have to wait patiently.
Other restaurants and stores will stagger openings throughout next spring.
Upcoming stores and restaurants include: American Threads, Strippaggio, Jazmin Spa, Francesca’s Collections, BurgerFi, CVS Pharmacy, Fresh to Order, Marlow’s Tavern, Solar Dimensions, Which Wich Superior Sandwiches, The General Muir, La Tagliatella, Sweet Monkey, Paradise Biryani Pointe, Tin Lizzy’s and Bonefish Grill.
– By Karishma Mehrotra