Evolution of Other Stores and Plazas
Car Hop [Google
Car Hop opened
in 1955, and was located on Route 9. This facility was similar to the
restaurants of the era. Later on, the building was renamed and became
Galaxy Car Hop. The building was eventually razed and the site became
Dodge, prior to the dealer's location on West Central Street in Natick. In 1985,
the site was again razed and
hotel was constructed, which still
stands to this day.
was located on the west side of Venture
at 60 Worcester Rd
and was an auto dealership that sold originally Volkswagens, but in
sold Fiats as well. The dealership stayed open until 1984, when the
was sold to the adjacent Bowler's World complex. Following demolition
auto dealership, the west wing of Venture West
was completed and opened in 1986.
end of Whittier Street
originally included an office building that housed the headquarters and
manufacturing facilities of burglar alarm company Aritech Corporation.
the site was sold to a pension fund that quickly proposed razing the
constructing a 118,000 sq. ft. BJ's Wholesale Club. The proposal was
controversial among residents of the area surrounding the store, as the
proposed store was incredibly close to single-family homes. Another
regarded a conflict of interest in which two board members were forced
abstain from the hearings.
last, BJ's gained
approval in 1993. The building, whittled down to 115,488 sq. ft.,
of BJ's Wholesale Club
World [Google Maps]
World was a
ten-pin bowling alley located at 50 Worcester Road on Framingham's
"Golden Mile". The
facility opened in 1961; in the years after, more stores were built
premises. These included Avis Rent-A-Car, Paul
Cohen Restaurant, and Strawberries. By 1986, after many renovations and
addition of new space on the site of the former Annis Morril Volkswagen
Fiat, the building had sprouted into the Venture West
In later years,
tenants such as Maurice the Pants Man and Houlihans were located in the
building, but have since made way for Legal Sea Foods, relocated from Natick, and an
opened a store in the Golden Triangle at 1450 Worcester Rd, behind Desmond
O'Malley's Irish Pub. The store suffered poor visibility from Route 9,
it did have a fair amount of parking. Circuit City,
meanwhile, was in the midst of a chain wide store relocation and
phase, of which a relocated Golden Triangle location would be a part.
very visible Natick Promenade slated for construction just several
joined the project and relocated to
the new building during October 2004.
December 30, 2004, a newspaper article from Connecticut
revealed that Bob's Discount Furniture would be coming to the Golden
via the former Circuit
It was later made
official by the MetroWest Daily News, and the new Bob's Discount
opened on April 7th, 2005.
More Info: Natick
Promenade @ Framingham/Natick Retail, photo
of old Circuit City, photo
of Bob's Discount Furniture
DeScenza Diamonds [Google
In late 2003, the
Framingham Planning Board approved plans to construct a 19,100 sq. ft
on a leveled portion of Underprice Way, the road leading to Jordan's Furniture. The building was completed
mid-2004, at which time Boston-based DeScenza Diamonds began to fit up
15,000 sq. ft. of the space to build their largest jewelry store yet.
Melting Pot, a chain of fondue restaurants, opened in the remainder
space in 2006.
More Info: Photo
of DeScenza Diamonds
Dun & Bradstreet Corp. [Google
& Bradstreet was
the final tenant of an office building located on Speen Street, across from the
Mall. In the early 1990's, with the area quickly evolving into a retail
the building was torn down. The site then housed a Sam's Club store,
opened in 1994. The Sam's Club also included a parking garage, which
constructed on the site to house the expected crowds.
the Sam's Club was plagued
from the start. Not only did the site have incredibly poor street
but the opening of the BJ's Wholesale Club on Whittier Rd. in Framingham in
1994 destroyed the Sam's Club's
hopes for success. On May 1, 2006, the Sam's Club abruptly closed.
was a popular bakery in Natick during the 1980s, located across Route 9
from the 9/27 plaza. This spot evolved into the Oriental Furniture
Warehouse, which closed in early 2006 and was temporarily used as a
Halloween Costume store during Halloween 2006.
Gino's Restaurant [Google
Gino's was a
restaurant located on Route 9 eastbound in Framingham during the 1970s.
By the early 80's, it had closed and the building was transformed into
the "Walk-in Medical Clinic". With the retirement of the head doctor,
the clinic closed in January 2006. During spring 2007, the building was
gutted, and reopened shortly after as a Middlesex Savings Bank branch.
Giovanni's was a
restaurant that was located at 70 Worcester Rd in Framingham
across from Shopper's World; it
appeared to be something of a steakhouse/Italian food restaurant. In
demolished the restaurant and constructed a Pizzeria Uno, which stands
More Info: Giovanni's advertisement at framinghammass.info
Holiday Inn [Google
At one time, there was apparently a Holiday Inn on
Route 9. By the 1990s this site became Desmond O'Malley's Irish Pub and
Restaurant. O'Malley's was closed in 2006 and was renovated into Metro
9 Steak House, which opened toward the end of the year. It's likely
also took up most of the Bob's Discount Furniture
lot behind it.
Howard Johnson's [Google
For many years there was a Howard Johnson's on Route 9. From what I
it appears that the Howard Johnson's Restaurant existed since the 50's,
the hotel component was added in 1968. In 1983, the Howard Johnson's
was replaced with something called "Bumbershoots", and later on, this
became a Chili's. In 2003, the restaurant closed due to roof problems
a year to fix. It reopened in 2004. Meanwhile, the hotel changed around
from Howard Johnson's (with the orange roof) to "The Framingham Inn"
(with a blue roof). This lasted about a year, when the hotel became a
as it is today.
More Info: Framingham
Howard Johnson's at America's
Under the Orange Roof, Best
Western Framingham website
Jack-In-The-Box burger chain, currently confined to the west, operated
nationwide and had a location in the Golden Triangle on Route 9. I'm
when the restaurant closed, but by 1987, the restaurant was replaced
LensCrafters with adjoining optometrist's office. The building is
slated to be replaced with a new retail development as part of Natick
Promenade's Phase II.
Lafayette Electronics Store [Google Maps]
was apparently a
chain of electronics stores that appear to be an early version of
Buy and Circuit City chains. I am
unsure about the location's history, but in the late 1970's the company
poor decisions to market illegal CB radio equipment, and ended up being
acquired by Circuit
in 1981. Another
source states that the company was once acquired by Montgomery Ward.
In 1989, a
plaza was constructed on the site, which currently houses Rochester Big
& Tall, Sleepy's,
Seafood, B.B. Kids, Fitness Etcetera, Eastern Mountain Sports, Fresh City,
and a few other tenants including a dental office. Past tenants in the
have included Coconuts Music, Legal Sea Foods (relocated to Framingham
Natick liquor restrictions), Milton's, For Eyes (relocated to Sherwood
2004), and Woodworker's Warehouse.
Path Marketplace [Google
Located somewhat off of the Golden Triangle, behind the
were numerous office buildings that dated at least to the mid-1970s.
buildings acted as offices for Zayre, which operated their corporate
headquarters about a mile away (770 Cochituate
Zayre had abandoned the premises by 1987, as their new, expanded
headquarters on Rte. 30 was completed.
In 1993, construction began on a new shopping center housing a Super
Shop, a dry cleaner (Super Star Cleaners), the relocated Fifth Ave.
Applebee's franchise, and Grove Bank. The Stop & Shop opened first,
the other retailers surrounding the store opening in the subsequent
Super Stop & Shop opened in 1994 with an Uno's to-go pizzeria, and
revolutionary features for a grocery store: in-store banking, as
above, and an in-store pharmacy. Within a few years, the Uno's logo
disappeared from the deli. The store also had a very small "snack
bar" where one could get a soda while shopping, but in 2002, this was
replaced with a Dunkin Donuts franchise. The largest change to the
occurred in early 2005, when Stop & Shop gave the store its first
renovation. Initially, Stop and Shop planned to change the store’s
and exits, but the Framingham Planning Board’s satisfaction with the
design left most of the exterior unchanged. The renovation did result
interior changes, including the relocation of the bottle return room
right side of the store to the left, countless department relocations,
fixtures, new lighting, and new flooring. The renovation was completed
Since the plaza opened, it has encountered many changes. The Applebee's
restaurant closed in 2003 for unknown reasons, and was replaced by the
the year by Firefly's Bodacious BBQ. In 1997, Grove Bank was acquired
Citizens Bank, creating Citizens' first branch in Framingham.
The Stop and Shop also had an in-store bank, which, as a result of many
mergers, had become a Fleet Bank by 2003. In 2003, Citizens Bank
large-scale agreement to replace Fleet branches in nearly all Rhode Island
stores. This proved poorly for the Old Connecticut Path Stop &
Shop, due to
the existing Citizens Bank branch. After the lease on the former Grove
expired, Citizens shuttered the branch in February 2005. The former
remained vacant for over a year, until it was replaced with a Middlesex
Bank branch on March 15, 2006.
More Info: Photo
of Old Connecticut Path Marketplace, Old Connecticut Path
Marketplace information, Middlesex
Savings Bank Opens Second Framingham Branch
Roy Rogers [Google
Roy Rogers opened in 1970 on the corner of Speen Street and Route 30.
it was replaced with a Howard Johnson's. Over time, the restaurant
a Ground Round. The Ground Round closed in 1998, with owner American
Hospitality Concepts, Inc. replacing the restaurant with a "Berkshire
Grill" concept at Shopper's World. In 2000, the existing building was
demolished and a new Naked Fish restaurant was constructed on the site.
More Info: Town
of Framingham property photos
State Farm Insurance [Google Maps]
quite a while, there
was a State Farm Insurance Agency on Cochituate Rd. (Route 30). It was
built in 1972 and added to
in 1978, and if I recall correctly, resembled somewhat of a ranch
were renovations made to the building in 1990. I recall that there may
once been a fire or something like that there in the 90's. In 1999, the
building was demolished and was replaced by Barmakian Jewelers, which
of Framingham property photos
Farm Stand (Framingham) [Google
site at 575 Worcester Street was first an A & P Supermarket, but by
the 1970s, it had become "The Farm Stand", a supermarket focusing on
produce. The Farm Stand closed in the mid-90's. The entire site was
razed and leveled to become a new plaza which opened in 1997. The plaza
was anchored by one of the first Wild Harvest supermarkets (owned by
Star Market), and featuring an Orvis, a Starbucks, a liquor store, and
several other tenants. In 2000, the Wild Harvest chain was sold to Wild
Oats Markets, who converted all of the stores under that branding. Wild
Oats would last just a year, with the store becoming part of the local
Bread and Circus chain in 2001. In 2003, Whole Foods Market, which
owned Bread and Circus, re-branded the chain under its corporate name.
Farm Stand (Wayland) [Google Maps]
in Cochituate at the corner of Rt. 27 and West Plain Street, the store
closed at some point during the 1990s. The facility was gutted and
renovated to house a Dunkin Donuts, Morn's Thai Restaurant, and "The
Artful Framer", a frame store.