Aug
20
2009

  Shops Are NOT Open In Old Trail

I read the headline in the Crozet Gazette that shops were now open in Old Trail. They talked about a gift shop, a segway rental place, pizza place, coffee shop, salon, and gym. I did note in the article they said something about the gym being for "express fitness" or something like that and their full opening would be in the fall.

So I took William out there to check things out. Stores are NOT open in Old Trail.

The coffee shop is open, but it's just a coffee shop, I don't really see a reason to go out there instead of to the Mudhouse which is closer to us. The salon is also open, but it's services are pricey so I doubt I'll be going there much.

But that's it. Nothing else is open. They've got apartments up over the shops, but it looks like a terrible place to live. Living over stores is fine in NYC, even convenient, so I had to think about why I had such a visceral negative reaction to this Old Trail place.

When you live in NYC, you can walk to the store you live above, plus dozens of stores in the blocks around you radiating around in every direction. So it's nice. But here, you live above a store and you can walk to that store or four others (or ONE other at the present). Beyond that, you're surrounded by a parking lot, and then empty lots, and then a suburban subdivision.

From what I can see taking place, Old Trail is really awful. Suburban blight. If somebody sold the county on the idea that this place is "new urbanism" then the county got taken in. It's just a subdivision with a strip mall with apartments included. And not even a good strip mall, even when it's full it looks like it will be pretty lame.