306 W. FRANKLIN ST.

306 W. FRANKLIN ST.

306
,
Chapel Hill
NC
Built in
1940-1950
Architectural style: 
Construction type: 
National Register: 
Type: 

Fowler's Grocery Store - which started in Chapel Hill in the 1920s. As of the 2000s, occupied by several restaurants/bars, including Vespa.

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Last updated

  • Thu, 10/26/2023 - 5:48pm by sevy

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306
,
Chapel Hill
NC
Built in
1940-1950
Architectural style: 
Construction type: 
National Register: 
Type: 

 

Fowler's Food Store was founded in Chapel Hill by the Fowler family in the 1920s. The store occupied several locations on West Franklin Street; in 1942, the grocery opened a Durham location on North Roxboro Road, just south of East Club Blvd. In 1950, Owners were noted as "RL Fowler and MM Fowler, the former being in active charge."

After the family sold the Chapel Hill store in the late-1970s, the Durham store became the one-and-only.

In February 2023 the Boston-based owners of the property and buildings (this one and adjacent) have applied for a "Conditional Zoning Application," which means they want to tear it all down and build a 150-foot tall, 416,000 square feet building, to house a research laboratory, retail and office space. It will reach from Franklin Street to Rosemary Street. It's is called the "Longfellow Project." So, according to whoever wins the local elections, all this might be gone soon (if approved, construction is to start in early 2025). For more information, Indy Week recently wrote an article about it: indyweek.com/news/orange/chapel-hill-toggles-between-growth-and-change-and-staying-the-same-for-yet-another-election-cycle with an update here: indyweek.com/news/orange/chapel-hill-planning-commission-recommends-moving-forward-with-longfellow-project.

Fowler's Food Store, 1950s

August 15, 1951 (photo by Roland Giduz, via UNC)

August 15, 1951 (photo by Roland Giduz, via UNC)

May 25, 1963 (photo by Roland Giduz, via UNC)

1965

Circa 1970

February 1977 (photo by Brian Clarke/DTH)

01.17.09 (G. Kueber)

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