Bibelot site lands a Barnes & Noble

Pikesville center draws another bookseller

Cheesecake and Starbucks coffee

October 19, 2002|By Lorraine Mirabella | Lorraine Mirabella,SUN STAFF

Barnes & Noble Inc. plans to open a bookstore in Pikesville at the site of a former Bibelot, a defunct Baltimore bookseller.

The new 24,500-square-foot Barnes & Noble Booksellers will be the first permanent book retailer to move into one of four former Bibelot stores in the Baltimore area, all of which shut down after the company filed for bankruptcy protection in March last year.

Greenebaum & Rose Associates, the developers of Woodholme Center, where the store will open, will announce details Tuesday, said a spokesman John Stanton.

The developers declined to comment further on the new store. Barnes & Noble officials also had no comment.

"I can't make any comment right now because we haven't announced anything," said Carolyn Brown, a Barnes & Noble spokeswoman.

The closing of the Reisterstown Road Bibelot, a popular gathering spot, prompted local residents to circulate petitions requesting another bookstore. Since then, the developers have been seeking and negotiating with bookstore tenants.

The Book Market, a discount-book chain that runs stores around the country on a short-term basis, moved in temporarily in November.

Like other Barnes & Nobles outlets, the new store will include a coffee bar serving Starbucks coffee and Cheesecake Factory desserts.

Besides the Pikesville location, Bibelot pulled out of two locations in Baltimore - in Canton and the Village of Cross Keys - and one in Timonium. None has been replaced permanently with a bookstore.

Each Bibelot store had a Donna's coffee bar and restaurant.

The Book Market also opened in November in the former Bibelot in the American Can Co. retail complex in Canton. It closed Sept. 1. The former Donna's there has been taken over by Kiss Cafe, the latest incarnation of the former One World Cafe Express.

American Can Co.'s developer is expected to bring in another retailer, possibly an upscale apparel or home-goods store, to fill the Bibelot space.

Cross Keys has not found a new tenant to replace the former 16,000-square-foot Bibelot store there.

Rouse Co., which owns the North Baltimore shopping center, recently brought in Chico, a national women's apparel chain, and a locally owned art gallery.

J. Jill, another national women's clothing retailer, is opening a store at Cross Keys next week.

For Rouse, the new tenants are part of a real estate strategy begun after the Bibelot store closed in June last year. Rouse hopes to carve up the large, former Bibelot space - where Donna's restaurant is still open - for a restaurant and one or two other stores.

At Bibelot's former Timonium site, Baja Fresh Mexican Grill opened in July. The restaurant occupies part of the former bookstore site in the Timonium Crossing shopping center. Donna's restaurant, which had operated with the Bibelot, has remained open.

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