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Posted on Tue, May 29, 2012 : 5:57 a.m.

Business changes on Washtenaw Avenue in Ann Arbor

By Angela Smith

Editor's note: Several corrections have been made to the article.

The south side of Washtenaw Avenue on Ann Arbor’s east side is experiencing some retail alterations.

At the corner of Huron Parkway and Washtenaw Avenue, the old Hollywood Video space is being reconstructed for a new business. Scott Young of CBRE confirmed that the zoning change was approved, and that the space has attracted a new urgent care facility. The urgent care would join other health-focused businesses, PT in Motion Physical Therapy and Medical Weight Loss Clinic, in the shopping center.


Arbor Cleaners on Washtenaw Ave. is redirecting its clients to Martinizing locations, now that it has closed.

Angela Smith for

Further down the retail strip, Arbor Cleaners closed earlier this month, and has posted signs on its window directing people to two local Martinizing locations, both owned by Mark LeChard. LeChard sold the Martinizing location about 5 years ago, when it was renamed Arbor Cleaners. He owns four additional area Martinizing stores, and says that business is going “well enough.” When asked about his thoughts as to why Arbor Cleaners closed, he said “Every dry cleaners is down or flat in the last five years," adding that Martinizing does hold a larger marketshare than its competitors.

Continuing east, shoppers can find construction for a new Indian Market that will occupy the old Once Upon A Child spot. Patel Brothers is the largest Indian grocery store chain in America.


Angela Smith for

According to Rakesh Patel, “Our customers that shop at our locations in Michigan have been asking us to open in Ann Arbor for the last year. We did our market survey and saw a good potential.”

Patel Brothers has 49 locations, including three other locations in Detroit area. The shop specializes in Indian spices, beans, rice and exotic fruits and vegetables. Patel was hoping to open a market around 8,000 sq ft, but settled on a smaller shop when he found the space on Washtenaw Avenue.

“Indian food is becoming more famous and more mainstream,” according to Patel, “we are noticing a change in our customer profile, we are seeing about 15 percent non-Indian customers in our stores, which is very exciting for us, as this opens a new market for us to penetrate.”

One mile south of Washtenaw, at Packard and Platt, are a number of other ethnic specialty markets and eateries. One of those is Bombay Market, an 8,000-square-foot shop opened in 2010 by owners Mukesh and Bharti Patel.



Wed, May 30, 2012 : 1:34 a.m.

"Scott Young of CBRE..." Should the article use the full name of whatever "CBRE" stands for, so we know what it is, before using the acronym? "Patel Brothers has 49 locations, including three other locations in Detroit area." Shouldn't that say "...other locations in *the* Detroit area"? This freelance "journalist" shouldn't quit her day job.

Jeff Renner

Tue, May 29, 2012 : 2:30 p.m.

Your "Martinizing" and "Patel Brothers" links are garbled and don't work.

Tony Dearing

Tue, May 29, 2012 : 3:53 p.m.

Thanks for pointing that out. The links have been fixed.

Perry White

Tue, May 29, 2012 : 1:12 p.m.

"Patel Brothers is the largest Indian grocery " The largest where? In the state? In the country? I think TinyArtist has the right idea.

Jeff Renner

Tue, May 29, 2012 : 3:59 p.m.

Perry - It looks like you missed the "store chain in America " hanging out by itself over on the left above the photo. I think these lines are called orphans or widows. It would be much better if it had been printed below the start of the sentence. There is still at least one more correction needed, a comma after "Platt" in the last paragraph.


Tue, May 29, 2012 : 12:20 p.m.

Please rewrite this and turn it in again tomorrow.

Mike D.

Tue, May 29, 2012 : 9:35 p.m.

Thanks for the laugh. Needed that today!


Tue, May 29, 2012 : 12:19 p.m.

Typo - "According to Rakesh Patel, "Our customers that shop at out locations in Michigan have been asking us to open in Ann Arbor for the last year. We did our market survey and saw a good potential."" Should be "at our locations in Michigan"


Tue, May 29, 2012 : 10:28 a.m.

"One of which Bombay Market..." If you put the missing "is" in there, this still would not be a sentence. Have any readers been to that small Indian grocery in the Plymouth Road plaza (not sure if it's officially the plaza, but it's where Carpenter Bros. hardware is)? I'd like to hear any feedback on that place.


Tue, May 29, 2012 : 10:24 a.m.

The old Hollywood Video being remodeled is at Washtenaw and Huron PARKWAY.