2017 | News

Aging Cabin John Shopping Center in Potomac Could Get Overhaul

Planning board OKs proposal to construct two retail buildings on center parking lot

View of the Cabin John Shopping Center

Via Montgomery County Planning Board

The owner of Cabin John Shopping Center in Potomac is taking the first steps toward reinventing the fading complex.

On Thursday, the Montgomery County Planning Board approved plans to construct two standalone retail buildings near the intersection of Seven Locks Road and Tuckerman Lane. Together, the buildings will total 9,999 square feet and will stand on what’s now part of the shopping center parking lot.

The project will be the first phase of a larger overhaul at the roughly 150,000-square-foot shopping center owned by Edens, a South Carolina-based company that owns and redevelops shopping complexes.

A Giant grocery store and CVS pharmacy anchor the Cabin John center, which was built in the 1960s and “is in need of repair,” the planning staff report stated.

Edens’ subdivision application normally would be reviewed at the administrative level. It came before the planning board Thursday because a Potomac resident had written a letter expressing concern about the project.

Jerry Garson, treasurer of the Regency Estates Citizens Association, argued that the two retail buildings should be moved farther from the intersection to allow more space for future roadway expansions. He also was worried that the construction would disturb a 96-inch water main that runs through the property near the proposed building site.

“If they’re willing to make these changes, we have no problem with the project,” he said.

Erin Girard, a land use attorney representing Edens, said the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission was aware of the development plan and was comfortable with it. County transportation officials are satisfied that the project won’t conflict with future road or sidewalk improvement plans, she said.

The Washington Business Journal first reported on the redevelopment plan.

A figure showing two new buildings planned for construction at the Cabin John Shopping Center in Potomac. Via Montgomery County Planning Board

Bethany Rodgers can be reached at bethany.rodgers@bethesdamagazine.com.