Fill This Space: Cosi at Reston Town Center

by Karen Goff September 28, 2016 at 4:30 pm 20 Comments

Cosi at Reston Town Center

Fast-casual restaurant Cosi abruptly closed its doors at 11909 Democracy St. earlier this week.

While the restaurant’s manager said on Tuesday the store’s lease was coming to an end, the entire chain closed a large number of stores this week prior to filing Chapter 11 bankruptcy on Wednesday.

That means local issues, such as the lease terms and the paid parking that begins in January, probably were not the reason for the Reston closure. A branch in Arlington also closed Tuesday. The company says it is closing about half its 74 stores nationwide.

There are now several vacancies at Reston Town Center, which is relatively rare. Storefronts that used to hold Bebe and PR Barbers are vacant on Market Street. Salon Nordine recently closed (though a new tenant is set to take over).

The former location of Davelle Clothiers at 11904 Market St. is temporarily empty but will soon house FedEx, which will move from 11811 Freedom Dr. as the Freedeom Drive building prepares for redevelopment.

Cosi’s space is located next to PR Running at the base of one of RTC’s soon-to-be paid parking garages. What should open there now? Tell us in the comments.

  • kcowing

    Cosi filled for bankruptcy today – “Così files for bankruptcy” http://nrn.com/finance/cos-files-bankruptcy

    • Karen Goff

      Yes, that is in this story.

      • kcowing

        You revised your story after I posted my comment.

        • Karen Goff

          No. this is the original story. I think you were at first looking at the one from Tuesday, which has already been updated. Anyway, bankruptcy.

          • Why do you bother?

            makes me sad – i really liked their food, although I’m partly to blame since I hadn’t been there in years.

  • Mike M

    “That means local issues, such as the lease terms . . . probably were not the reason for the Reston closure.”

    Not necessarily so. If the new lease was higher it very well could have made the difference in whether this store remained open or not.

  • AP

    I used to work there in high school. It never seemed to take off quite like other locations since it opened. And recently it always looks like a ghost town. It’s a shame and sad, but unfortunately with so many newer options, understandable. Definitely not a result of paid parking.

    • One really

      The only time I ever seen it packed was after a potomac river running event.

  • Greendayer

    I dislike paid parking as much as anyone, but this is good reporting. Part of Ch 11 reorg is to have a plan that is acceptable to creditors. This means getting rid of marginal performers. And, this is the reason the RTC Cosi is closing. Pay parking had zero to do with its poor past performance.

    • Mike M

      Sorry, but if you are struggling, a higher lease will cut your throat. Paid parking in the future is not an argument for keeping this particular store open.

    • tattler

      Cosi cited it as a reason for their decision to close. Doesn’t get much more clear than that.

      You must work for BP? Are you also giving them 5 stars for their ParkRTC app?

      • Greendayer

        Interesting how emotion clouds judgment. I actually give BP zero stars for their mishandling of the RTC parking fiasco. And I hope the paid parking is a huge failure. But, you can’t blame that in a Chapter 11 reorganization. The unit was underperforming before the new proposed lease and the impact of the paid parking were felt. It’s because they were underperforming that they were shuttered. Hope this helps.

      • I don’t like the paid parking – but anyone who set foot into the Cosi knows that it was underperforming. Never once did I venture in, day or night, lunch time or rush hour, without walking right up to the counter. Yet it still took forever to get me meals that weren’t fresh and were overburdened with iceberg and stale bread.

        I wish Cosi no harm, but this particular location just couldn’t pay the rent, I’m sure. Whatever the said.

  • Nauk Fitness Elite

    Scott Parker’s A-Town and Don Tito are the Scylla and Charybdis of North Arlington, although most of his guests actually reside in their parents’ basements around Reston or points further west. Why not give him the former Cosi space so that these mouth breathers won’t have to drive as far to get their EDM and mojito fix? I’m thinking of a minimally decorated space, reminiscent of a stage set. The beverage program features New Hampshire microbrews and cocktail waitresses ask guests if human beings ever realize life while they live it. Call it R Town

  • Chuck Morningwood

    French Tickler Retread Shop? The nubs on those things wear off so quickly.

  • Office Person nearby


  • Busboys & Poet, Bennigan’s, or Sweet Ginger (in Vienna now). Or maybe a BBQ place?

  • dandiprat

    How about they demolish it and put in some free parking (that will stay free)

  • Generic User

    What small business owner would be stupid enough to open in this location with paid parking coming and its related drop in foot traffic? From that stand point, it is not surprising for there to be several “rare” vacancies.

  • Arielle in NoVA

    RTC and BP should turn the space into a customer education office.


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