On Wednesday, the City of Richmond launched a new campaign, “Change for RVA Schools”, to promote and encourage dining in Richmond restaurants as a means to support funding for new school facilities in the city.
The campaign, of course, is centered around the city’s Meals Tax, as 7.5% of the sales of prepared foods goes toward school facilities, their maintenance, and construction.
The city plans to post ads on GRTC buses and social media encouraging residents to visit restaurants throughout the city.
The Meals Tax, raised by 1.5% by a City Council vote in February, was an effort spearheaded by Mayor Levar Stoney to raise more funding for schools. Many restaurant owners and citizens protested the tax hike. That percentage of the overall 7.5% tax rate is specifically earmarked for new school construction and is the focus of this campaign.
At the time, the city estimated the increase would raise approximately $9.1 million annually overall for Richmond Public Schools.
Veteran baker to open brick and mortar bakery operation in Lakeside
Up All Night Bakery, a new brick and mortar for 20-year baking veteran Jonathan Highfield, will take over the former Pulp RVA space at 5411 Lakeside Avenue.
From Richmond BizSense:
Jonathan Highfield has kneaded dough for about 20 years, both in the employment of and instruction of others. This year, he’s baking a venture entirely of his own creation.
He recently signed a lease on 5411 Lakeside Ave., where he plans to open a production facility for his Up All Night Bakery by March.
Up All Night was launched as a part-time gig in late 2019, making croissants, breads, cookies and other baked goods that are sold at farmers markets and to a few wholesale customers around town.
Highfield currently bakes in the kitchen of the Early Bird Biscuit Co.’s Bellevue Avenue location during the business’s off-hours. He said he decided to move Up All Night elsewhere because he had outgrown the Early Bird space.
Family of local freight and transportation company makes $2 million donation to children’s hospital construction project
The Children’s Hospital Foundation’s matching campaign effectively will double the gift to $4 million.
A local freight and transportation provider has made a major gift towards the construction of the forthcoming Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU expansion. In addition to the company’s gift of $150,000, Estes family members committed $1.85 million to support the Wonder Tower, the new home for Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU’s inpatient, emergency, and trauma services.
The two donations from Estes Express Lines and the Estes family were matched by the Children’s Hospital Foundation, maximizing the total investment in the Wonder Tower to $4 million. As part of the capital campaign to raise $100 million, the foundation is matching the first $25 million in gifts from the community.
“The support of Estes Express Lines and the Estes family is extremely meaningful. We’re grateful they’ve added their voice and support to our mission to build a world-class pediatric hospital in Richmond,” said Lauren Moore, president and chief executive officer of Children’s Hospital Foundation. “They’re truly a values-focused company and family, and their gifts reflect the importance they place on protecting children and their childhoods.”
“We are a family-owned business that’s had the honor of working with thousands of Richmond-area families for nearly 90 years,” said Rob Estes, president and CEO of Estes Express Lines. “Children deserve the best possible medical care when they need it, and we’re proud to support Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU, as a company, and as a family.”
As part of the donation, some areas of the Wonder Tower will be named in honor of Estes, including the hospital’s loading dock, a nod to their work as a freight carrier business. The gift includes additional recognition of the family’s generosity throughout the building.
Once complete in spring 2023, the Wonder Tower will bring world-class pediatric facilities to Central Virginia. Located in downtown Richmond, the 16-story tower will be home to CHoR’s Level 1 pediatric trauma center, emergency room, inpatient units, new operating rooms, increased imaging capacity, and family amenities — all in an environment created just for kids and their loved ones.
“The children’s tower is being built for and by our community thanks to generous friends like the Estes,” said Elias Neujahr, CEO of CHoR. “It will be a beacon of hope for kids and families across the Commonwealth while helping us attract and retain top talent so our children have access to be the best care, close to home.”
In 2021, Estes Express Lines will celebrate its 90th anniversary as CHoR finishes its centennial year. “Let’s all come together to support the Wonder Tower, a special place where all families and children can receive exceptional pediatric care, right here in Richmond,” said Estes.
New Publix supermarket opens its doors in Carytown
The new grocery store at Carytown Exchange is the fourth within a two-block radius and joins Kroger, The Fresh Market, and Ellwood Thompson’s.
After years of anticipation, Publix supermarket will open its doors in Carytown Wednesday morning.
The 48,000 square feet grocery store, located at 3535 Ellwood Avenue, will celebrate its grand opening at 7 a.m.
The supermarket will anchor the new Carytown Exchange shopping center which will also feature free parking in a new two-story parking deck.
In December 2018, Publix signed a lease to anchor the Carytown Exchange shopping center, replacing the former Martin’s in the Richmond Shopping Center.