A string of recent store closings in Friendship Heights, an upscale neighborhood straddling the border of Washington, D.C., and Montgomery County, Maryland, may present an opportunity to usher in a new lineup of distinctive merchants to its shopping district. But the stretch is carved up between nine property owners, with differing approaches to leasing their sites. There is no unified vision for the retail hub, which has become a neighborhood of dead zones and hot spots. "The area wasn't planned," said Retail Development and Leasing Partner Janis Schiff. "It sort of evolved on its own, with each land owner developing their own semi-self-contained project. It didn't necessarily fit with everything else."
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