- The Washington Times - Monday, September 23, 2002

Weight-loss poster boy Jared may be thinner, but Subway is getting fatter in the District, Maryland and Virginia.
Subway Development Corp. (SDC) of Washington D.C. plans to add 165 to 200 stores over the next three years. The McLean-based group, which has exclusive development rights in Virginia, the District and Maryland, excluding Baltimore, has 718 locations in its territory. More than 50 of those opened this year.
The group is scouting out nontraditional sites, ranging from hospitals and museums to military bases, college campuses and office parks. "There is a captive audience [at those locations]," says Alan Warmund, president of SDC.
About 60 percent to 65 percent of SDC's growth strategy still is focused on traditional locations like shopping centers, Mr. Warmund said.
SDC opened its first location in the Pentagon in March and expected to have three or four stores there in the next three years. Subway has two locations in Quanitco and two at Kings Dominion, and SDC is "working very diligently" to secure a deal with the Smithsonian museums, Mr. Warmund says.
He says he isn't worried about each Subway location taking business from the others. In fact, cluttering the market with Subway stores is good for business, Mr. Warmund says.
"If you don't have density and exposure, how do people know about you?" he says. "They don't."
Mr. Warmund says the company's goal is to open 932 stores one for every 14,000 people in Maryland, Virginia and the District.
Zagat names top eateries
Kinkead's tops the Zagat Survey again this year as the most popular restaurant in Washington.
Kinkead's, located on Pennsylvania Avenue, is "a class act in all aspects," writes one reviewer in the 2003 edition of the familiar pocket-size maroon guidebook.
Baltimore's most popular eatery is Charleston on Lancaster Street in the Inner Harbor East.
This year, 4,336 surveyors rated and reviewed 775 restaurants in Washington and Baltimore. Participants dined out an average of 2.6 meals per week 586,000 meals total. Based on Zagat's 30-point scale, surveyors separately rated each restaurant's food, decor, service and estimated meal cost.
The Inn at Washington in Northern Virginia received the top honors for food, decor and service. In Baltimore, Prime Rib, on North Calvert Street, took top honors for food and service, while Hampton's at the Harbor Court Hotel was voted best decor.
In the District, the average meal cost was $31.86 up about $3 from last year. Baltimore's average tab rose $4 to $30.08. The average cost for a meal at Washington's 20 most expensive restaurants was $60.39 compared with an average of $51 at Baltimore's 20 most expensive restaurants, Zagat reported.
New business
Save-A-Lot Food Store opened a new location with 25 employees in Bladensburg last week. The St. Louis-based 1,000-store chain has two other locations in Oxon Hill and Hyattsville and plans to open more stores in the D.C. area in the next 18 months.
Panera Bread is opening a new location in Arlington on Oct. 1. The Richmond Heights, Mo.-based bakery-cafe chain plans to open two more locations in the Northern Virginia market later this year. it has about 20 cafes in Maryland and Virginia.

Donna De Marco can be reached at 202/636-4884. Retail & Hospitality appears every other Monday.

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