Last week, the Hyattsville Patch ran an article about part of the University Town Center being auctioned off in a foreclosure proceeding. This is extremely disappointing as this center had the potential to be a really great place, but seems to be floundering under mismanagement--at least according to tenants quoted in the article.
I remember the high hopes for the University Town Center when it opened. During the summer, I used to take my children there for the afternoon to eat lunch at the Wild Onion, and then play in the fountain. It was always pleasant and nice.
However, the place is apparently not thriving. And that's ashame. The person quoted in the article may be right about mismanagement. I haven't been in a while. I always wanted to go to the theater, but couldn't bring myself to pay to park. While this may not bother some people (and really, the gas to go somewhere else might cause you to break even), it bothered me. I also stopped going because one of the loveliest features--a fountain children could frolic in-- was never on. A couple of times, I packed my kids swim stuff and towels and drove out there, to find a bone dry fountain. Having to watch the kids' disappointed reaction left me not going back.
I know the economy is bad, but places can still thrive if people are excited about them. Take the new Busboys and Poets (on Rte. 1), which is packed every time I drive by. There's tons of excitement about it. I hope people can get excited about University Town Center again. The only way to get more great places to go in Hyattsville (and PG county, in general) is to support the ones who are here.