Kensington Retail Project To Be Completed in February

Wine restaurant headlines Knowles Station establishments

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A conceptual drawing of the Knowles Station project at the site of Hawkins' Produce in Kensington.

DVA Architects

The long-awaited Knowles Station project in Kensington is expected to be finished in February after delays in permits slowed the opening by a few months.

The development includes five spaces, four of which have tenants.

Verizon is expected to open on Feb. 1 and Knowles Station Wine and Co. will debut sometime during the month, Chevy Chase-based developer Tom Brault said.

Knowles Station is on the grounds of the former roadside stand Hawkins’ Produce, cleared in November 2017, at Detrick and Knowles avenues.

The wine restaurant will be the “main anchor retail tenant,” Brault said. It will have craft beer and wine, a commercial kitchen and a delivery service.

Knowles Station Wine and Co. will operate under a Class D liquor license, a fairly new designation that will allow the restaurant to have onsite and offsite beer and wine sales, Brault said.

The Kensington liquor laws had to be adjusted as well, “which we were happy to do to get this type of restaurant-wine bar,” Mayor Tracey Furman said.

Gelato shop La Gelatteria will take one of the five available spaces, and Brault has an agreement with a massage and spa suite for the fourth slot.

Brault said he would like to sign a restaurant that complements Knowles Station Wine and Co. and has had discussions with a number of restauranteurs, though negotiations are currently on hold.

“We just put it on the back burner until we can get everyone else open,” Brault said.

Furman said she wants an ethnic restaurant to occupy the final space, something like Los Chorros in Wheaton. The mayor added this is the first development of several to be completed, part of an increase that occurred after officials approved a new growth plan in 2012.

The Montgomery County Planning Board recently approved plans for a senior living facility, and Furman said two more developments should break ground in the near future.

Both Furman and Brault were excited about the completion of Knowles Station given the paucity of projects in recent years.

“Let’s face it, it’s the first new thing ever in Kensington,” Brault said.

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