Business a bust at the Edge

A lack of customers forced smoothie shop Maui Wowi to close.

Three stores operating beneath the Edge aren’t having much luck in their current locations.

The row of spaces along the bottom of the student housing complex alternate between operating businesses and vacant properties with brown paper duct taped to the window frames.

Some storefronts are boarded up because of a lack of business, while others carry on struggling to attract customers (Rachel Playe/TTN).

These empty spaces contain everything from bed frames to cardboard boxes and bicycles.

Maui Wowi, the first store to open at the Edge, was also the first to close during the summer.
Management personnel from the Edge could not be reached to comment on what happened to Maui Wowi.

Managers of retailers at the Edge said they haven’t received help from their landlords.

Managers from the UPS Store, Jimmy John’s and Tea Country met with the Edge’s management and requested a marquee be installed on Cecil B. Moore Avenue, listing the businesses for passers-by to see.
The managers said the discussion was eight months ago, but no progress has been made.

Orry Baram, a senior advertising major, was unaware that any businesses operated on the first floor of the complex.

Baram did not know the UPS Store existed until his roommate informed him.

Employees at each of the three remaining businesses said there is a tolerable amount of visitors even though the stores are off of the regular path for many on campus.

Jacki Dellaquila, a manager at Jimmy John’s, said business has remained steady.

“There were a lot of students and parents around at the beginning of the semester,” Dellaquila said.

She estimated that the store makes between 40 and 50 deliveries each day.

A Tea Country employee who wanted to remain anonymous said business is slow.

“It’s like a very small wave that never really comes,” the employee said.

A manager at the UPS Store, who also chose to remain anonymous, had a similar outlook.

“There are students here and there. There are slow days, but some new faces show everyday,” the employee said.

For Tea Country, attempts at advertising with fliers inside the Edge were ineffective. According to the Edge’s policy, retailers are not allowed to post anything inside the residential complex.

To attract new customers, employees from Tea Country have spoken at local churches, schools and businesses about the health benefits of drinking tea.

The UPS Store distributed fliers to students during Spring Fling last semester, hoping to attract new customers.

The remaining businesses have taken steps to attract customers by informing them about their locations.

Employees from Jimmy John’s give samples of their sandwiches on campus. The business has catered programs for local churches, residence halls and other locations on Main Campus. Temple faculty members frequently stop in for lunch or hold small meetings there as well.

For now, the stores are trying to make the best of the situation as the brown paper remains in three of the vacant spaces.

Rebecca Ruiz, managing director at the Edge, said there aren’t any new businesses planned to open. She said the vacancies may be leased out in the future.

Greg Adomaitis can be reached at

1 Comment

  1. One of the big problems with the retail location is the way the building orients with the street – why the hell is the retail on a huge driveway and landscaping berm away from the sidewalk? Why not bring it flush to the street? Businesses thrive on customers passing them by, these places are essentially invisible from foot traffic.

    That and how many people from the neighborhood are looking for smoothies and tea?

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