PetSmart preparing for Millhopper; Paddiwhack moves to 13th Street


From The Gainesville Sun - By Michael Stone

PetSmart is preparing to open its second location in Gainesville.

The pet store chain will be taking over the space in the Millhopper Shopping Center last leased by CVS, directly to the west of anchor tenant Publix.

PetSmart has another location in Butler Plaza on Archer Road, one of 77 across the state.

The company recently began the permitting process for the Millhopper store. With renovations to be made, it’s too early to say when the store will open, said Nick Banks, managing director of Front Street Commercial Real Estate Group, which handles Millhopper’s leasing for owner Regency Centers.

The new lease leaves two available spaces remaining at the shopping center: 2,500 square feet between Beef ‘O’ Brady’s and National Coin Investors and an outparcel where a building up to 2,700 square feet could be built.

Paddiwhack ‘liking’ 13th Street location

Valerie Druga, manager of Paddiwhack craft gallery, said the business is doing well since moving to its new spot March 1.

“It’s a good location,” she said of the space at Northwest 16th Avenue and Northwest 13th Street, next to Lloyd Clarke Sports. “We’re getting a lot of traffic, and we’re liking it real well over here.”

Paddiwhack has moved twice.

Druga said the new location is a “little bit smaller” compared to its former space in the Fresh Market plaza on Northwest 16th Boulevard. “But it’s so cozy,” she added.

The store moved because the last location was “too big and unmanageable,” Druga said.

Because the move was practically overnight, there wasn’t a stop in business, she said. A grand opening is expected sometime in early May, she said.

To join PetSmart and Publix or for leasing information on Millhopper Shopping Center, click here. Or for more Front Street News, click here...


Virginia MacKoul

Virginia is a graduate from the University of Florida's College of Design Construction and Planning with a degree in Sustainability and the Built Environment, and a minor in Urban Regional Planning. Virginia joined the Front Street team in 2011, as an intern. Upon graduation, Virginia joined the Front Street team full-time as the Director of Client Services. Ms. MacKoul’s addition furthers Front Street’s continued growth and expansion within Gainesville and other North Central Florida markets. She was promoted to Director of Marketing in 2014 and now manages the firm’s team of interns and oversees all marketing and branding activity. Virginia was born in Boston and moved to Lee County, Florida in 1997. Virginia graduated her high school's International Baccalaureate program and started at the University of Florida with a focus on Architecture. Virginia shares Front Street's passion of giving back to the community and those in need. Virginia's hobbies include photography, cooking, football, movies, music, and spending time with her dog, Brinkley.

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