Route 1: Time to Face the Changes?

By Erica Bonelli

Many students have suggestions about what they would like to see next on Route 1, but they all say that another pizza joint is not one of them.

Businesses come and go on Route 1, but one thing that stays the same is the plentiful supply of pizza joints for a college kid’s indulgence at any hour of the day.

“In terms of restaurants, there aren’t a lot of Mediterranean and Greek-type places,” said junior marketing major Recel Lazarte, “If they brought back a Roti or a Cava or something along those lines, I think that would be pretty successful along Route 1.”

With both Roti Mediterranean Grill and Garbanzo Mediterranean Grill closed since September of 2014, the area has yet to see another fast-casual Mediterranean establishment fill the gaps.

For those who like to cook themselves, the lack of grocery store options on Route 1 has also been a disappointment.

Kyle Forbes, junior finance and supply chain major, would like to see a Costco or a grocery store that has fresh options come to Route 1. Forbes lives in his fraternity house, and says that on the weekends their chef is gone, leaving them with few options.

“We need more food places, more places to go eat at night and on the weekends,” he said.

On the other end of the spectrum, Economic Development Coordinator Michael Stiefvater noted the lack of establishments other than restaurants.

“A senior housing project is something that hasn’t been built here that would be interesting,” he said. “That’s one thing that’s missing.”

A lack of shopping including clothing and shoe stores is another development Stiefvater says could be implemented perhaps using some of the vacant or underutilized properties already existing on Route 1.

Possibly the biggest deficit is the lack of recreational and entertainment venues, said Stiefvater, “Perhaps a movie theater or something of that nature would give people the opportunity to use College Park for other things besides dining, to keep them here”


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