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Question of the Day: Center Focus?

Share your opinion in the comments.

Today we told you William Raveis Real Estate is expanding its Lexington Center office into the former home of Waldenbooks, which currently has its windows covered, concealing the work inside. 

While putting together that piece, we learned a permit for Panera Bread, could be decided later today, moving forward Panera's plans to occupy a portion of the Cohoes building at 1690 Mass Ave.

Panera had initially targed this month to get up and running, but a January timeframe is probably more likely, officials told Patch this spring.

So, with that in mind, we want to know What kind of businesses would you all like to see in Lexington Center? Does the current makeup include too much of some things and not enough of another?

K Beck July 13, 2011 at 07:58 PM
There are too many banks and real estate offices. It keeps the downtowen area from being vibrant. We need more retail destinations preferably not chains.
Denise J. Dubé July 13, 2011 at 09:11 PM
I'd have to agree with K. Beck. Sweet Beads, Crafty Yankee, Sweet Indulgences, Candy Castle, Michelson's Shoes, Theatre Pharmacy, Mario's, Nourish, the Venue -- they all say "Lexington." The only consolation is that the Historic Districts and Design Advisory committees will keep an eye on the signage. I'll never forget when one bank painted the limestone front and the HDC made them sandblast it off.
Linda July 13, 2011 at 09:14 PM
I would like to see more non-chain family friendly restaurants...............like Anna's Taqueria.
SP July 14, 2011 at 02:10 AM
We don't need a PANERA or a another chain store in Lexington. What we like to see is something unique and definitely NOT a PANERA. This is going to bring a lot of traffic and chaos to our peaceful town.
SP July 14, 2011 at 02:12 AM
Please NO PANERA in Lexington!
Larry Link July 14, 2011 at 12:27 PM
Hey -- I have an idea: how about an Electric Vehicle Charging Station?!
Denise J. Dubé July 14, 2011 at 01:06 PM
Larry, you may be joking, but in a few years we're going to see those everywhere. Great to see you at the meeting the other day.
Peggy Enders July 14, 2011 at 02:39 PM
Bike rental shop, store that sells a range of activewear and athletic clothing and shoes (remember Thunder Sports), stores that attract cyclists and walkers off the Bikeway into the center.
Laura Hussong July 14, 2011 at 02:50 PM
A cafe that supports the music and art scene. We were just at the Main St. Cafe in Groton to hear Lexington resident Jon Dreyer play jazz. It was a great evening, one I'd like to have in my own town.
Jacquelyn Katzenstein July 14, 2011 at 02:55 PM
We could use a hardware shop where we could find small items for home and/or business use..
gregory zurlo July 14, 2011 at 03:00 PM
The mix of uses currently in the Center reflects the market and what services the community is requesting...to some degree, by default. There isn't a specific business I think is missing from the Center, but maintaining a variety of small locally owned businesses is an important part of maintaining a unique Town character. Perhaps the powers-that-be could explore ways to encourage this via financial incentives and outreach.
Paul Rubin July 14, 2011 at 04:38 PM
There is certainly a perception (if not a reality) that there are too many banks and real estate offices in the center. How about a bookstore ? I know it's so easy to order books online and/or go to Barnes&Noble, so maybe a bookstore would have to be more creative in it's offerings. Also, non-chain restaurant.
Patrick Ball (Editor) July 14, 2011 at 05:16 PM
Hey guys, Thanks for all of the great feedback. Keep it up! It was brought to our attention yesterday that the story we posted about the Raveis expansion neglected to mention that, while two bookstores have left Lexington Center, there has also been the addition of a children's book store, The Elephant's Trunk.
Sandy Miller-Jacobs July 15, 2011 at 10:01 PM
I agree with K. Beck - way too many banks and real estate offices. Walden Books replaced by a fancy real estate office - really?? Stroll through Concord Center - shops that have clothes adults can wear to work, cafes that serve real food and are busy all day long. Lexington pales by comparison.
Chuck Olson July 17, 2011 at 01:36 AM
I agree that we have more than enough banks and real estate offices. I would add salons to that list. It would be GREAT to be able to buy basic groceries in the center - especially fresh produce. I miss the used book store. It was a great use of second floor space. We found many treasures there. More non-chain restaurants would be appreciated. We still drive to Flora in Arlington for a special meal. However, I do think that we would find a Panera useful and I welcome the people it would bring who would likely help other businesses in town. I stop in at the Meat House in Arlington after having met someone for coffee at Panera there. Wouldn't an English style pub be nice - but Nourish, Lexx and Buca provide a bit of that atmosphere.
Larry Link July 17, 2011 at 12:18 PM
Was NOT joking, Denise. Be on the Green, this coming Friday at 1:15... And bring your favorite plug-in -- some free "E" should be flowing! Oh, and your autograph book; should be some personalities there...
Denise J. Dubé July 18, 2011 at 11:27 AM
Thank you Larry. I learned you weren't joking right after that comment -- and have already spoken to a few people. Would love to talk to you too.
Audra Myerberg July 18, 2011 at 02:04 PM
Would love to see more restaurants and fewer banks/RE offices. A friend of mine says his bank has been looking at Lexington for an office. Oh, no! Love The Elephants Trunk for the kids but would like a book store back. Agree on the hardware store too...nothing huge just a local shop to get everyday items.
Jack Irwin July 29, 2011 at 06:48 PM
I look forward to Panera in town.

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