High Peaks Sportswear will move its inventory to its store in The Plaza and close its downtown location.

Ralph Smith, president of the company, said retail business at its 924 Main Street location has not been lucrative and he has decided to move inventory to the company's location at 2323 Memorial Ave. at The Plaza as well as to the company's other locations in Charlottesville, Blacksburg and Roanoke.

Smith said it would be a bad business decision to remain located downtown during the Main Street Renewal construction that is scheduled to be complete in 2021.

"I was pretty firmly convinced it would be a tremendous amount of reduction in sales volume during construction," Smith said. "The amount of money we would have lost over the next two years would be hard to justify."

Smith said he has always been supportive of downtown restoration and feels the construction is necessary but it is an unfortunate inconvenience to businesses.

"I don't think there is a better way for [the city] to handle it," he said. "If you have to dig up the street, you have to dig up the street. There's no hard feelings, we're not angry, this will long term be a good thing for downtown."

The Main Street location will close Nov. 1. Smith said the business will hold a sale of inventory beginning Oct. 14.

From the archives: Pittman Plaza

Right at the start of its highly anticipated opening in 1960, Pittman Plaza became the retail destination for the Lynchburg area for more than the next two decades. The shopping center started on land adjacent to a then-new Sears Roebuck & Co. (now the Lynchburg Public Library), and grew in stages to encompass more than two dozen stores -- including Leggett's, Miller & Rhoads and J.C. Penney -- as well as a bowling alley and movie theater. 

Rachael Smith covers local businesses and nonprofits. Reach her at (434) 385-5482.

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