All tenants are open for business and thriving at Veranda. The recent openings of Carolina Convenient Care and 501 Pharmacy make for a fully-opened center. The best news? All businesses are reporting early success stories and working diligently to create center synergy.
It’s widely known that residents of Chatham and Orange counties celebrate all things local. At Veranda, 100 percent of the tenants are local owners. In fact, 40 percent of the tenants are first-time small business owners, including Chris Adigun, M.D., F.A.A.D. at Dermatology & Laser Center of Chapel Hill; Heather and Jason Lloyd at Edge Aveda Men; Dr. Alexandra Boudreau and Dr. Kevin Ricker at Chatham Pediatric Dentistry; and Andy Pignatora and Amy Coughlin at Breakaway Café. Also, this is the first brick and mortar location for John Cappelletti at Capp’s Pizzeria, who’s pizza concept originally started as a food truck. Scroll though the News section of Veranda’s website to read about their personal stories.
The remaining percentage of tenants are recognizable businesses and faces, most having opened their second or third location or new business at Veranda. Town Hall Burger and Beer – Briar Chapel is Sadeghi’s second location for this restaurant concept, and his fifth restaurant to date. Alberello Café is the second concept for restauranteurs Brendan and Leslie Cox, with the successful farm-to-table concept Oakleaf, being their first. Dr. Craig Stevens, medical director of Carolina Convenient Care, also owns Triangle Family Care and Azura Skin Care Center in Cary. Co-owner of 501 Pharmacy Greg Vassie opened his other businesses Pittsboro Drug in 2005 and Hillsborough Pharmacy in 2010, and the law firm Bradshaw Robinson Slawter LLP at Veranda complements the firm’s original location in downtown Pittsboro. Triangle Visions Optometry of Chapel Hill and Parkway Family Dentistry are also new locations for existing businesses.
Another unique community-building aspect of Veranda is the Before I Die public art exhibit. Artist Candy Chang created the Before I Die sign concept; on her website, she writes, “Before I Die is a participatory public art project that invites people to contemplate death, reflect on life, and share their personal aspirations in public.” In response, Chang created a project site to teach others how to create the participatory walls. Now, over 2,000 walls have been created in over 70 countries.
In short, the board creates community, and that’s exactly what John Fugo, Veranda developer, had in mind when including the board in the center’s design. Having heard the Before I Die story on NPR, Fugo knew it was a perfect match for Veranda. He said, “I have been shocked by the interest the sign has generated. It’s become a focal point, and we have to clear off the board at least once a day, so new visitors can participate.” Over time, the board has been filled with various sentiments, from the inspirational, like “I want to see the world and meet people” and “I want to laugh and love a lot” to the silly, like “I want to see my brother shower more often.” Regardless of the words or their sentiments, it is the community-building around the board that is important.
With Briar Chapel’s home sales growing and the buzz about Veranda’s offerings spreading, the initial success will only continue, and with the upcoming spring weather, Veranda’s design will be best utilized. The outdoor patios will feature a variety of social events as multiple tenants have ideas in the works. Sadeghi is particularly excited about the upcoming months; he said, “We cannot wait for spring and summer when we start our outdoor music, trivia events and kids’ games.”