First Publix supermarket in Northern Virginia opens for business

The store is in Stafford, about an hour drive from eastern Loudoun County.

We know the Publix grocery store chain — one of America’s most popular supermarket brands — has a lot of fans in Loudoun County. So with that in mind, we thought it newsworthy that the first Publix store technically in Northern Virginia has quietly opened for business.

In mid-December, a new Publix store opened in Stafford, Virginia, on the southern edge of what is considered the NoVa region, per the Washington Metropolitan Statistical Area designation. The new 48,000 s.f. store opened in the Embrey Mill Town Center shopping plaza.

As regular readers of The Burn know, Publix was at one time considering a Loudoun County location. They had signed a deal for an Ashburn store several years ago before pulling out. At the time, the story was that Publix wanted to focus on growing the brand in the Richmond area, where today there are 15 Publix stores. The Burn has spoken to grocery store experts who say Publix’s decision to focus on southern and central Virginia probably has a lot to do with warehouses and supply lines. Having a single outlier store in Loudoun would mean that their delivery trucks would have to make a long drives from warehouse locations in North Carolina and central Virginia. Instead, they suggest that Publix will slowly grow its store locations as well as support locations up the I-95 corridor and — when they have sufficient warehouse space closer to Northern Virginia — then they will begin expanding in this area. Another factor could be rent rates. As many business people in this area know, retail and commercial space is usually much more expensive in the DC area than it is downstate. This has been given as a reason in the past for other major brands that avoid Northern Virginia.

File images: Publix

Still no official word on any Publix coming to Loudoun County, but for those of you who are counting — or considering a road trip — the new Stafford Publix — and its delicious fried chicken and Pub Sub deli sandwiches — is roughly 10 miles closer to Loudoun that the previous closest location in Fredericksburg. From Ashburn, it’s a little over 50 miles or approximately a one-hour drive on the interstate.

  1. Suzanne Liff 3 years ago

    Closest thing to Ukrops .

  2. Dexter Pointdexter 3 years ago

    Stafford is not “Northern Virginia”.

  3. Barbara 3 years ago

    I LOVE Publix!
    Always shopped there in FL

    Would LOVE to have one in Fairfax!

  4. ECofDC 3 years ago

    Friggin’ Stafford? Booooo.

  5. Mark M 3 years ago

    Since Wegman’s backed out of their South Riding location (still don’t buy the fact that it would kill their other locations in Centerville/Ashburn/Leesburg) Publix would be a great option

  6. Eloise Morton-Turner 3 years ago

    Publix in Virginia is like still having a store that is top of the line just as Ukrops was.
    I’m a native Virginian living in Florida where I have been shopping in Publix for years. This gives me the inside scoop on both.
    I shop at Publix whenever I’m home.

  7. GruntyGinMan 3 years ago

    Eh? This isn’t the first Publix in NOVA. There was one located in Fairfax City for a few years about ten years ago.

    • Chris Wadsworth 3 years ago

      If there was, it was not part of this chain, which is based in Florida.

  8. DOROTHY WALKER 3 years ago

    I love shopping at Publix in Fredericksburg;they have the best fried chicken, best bakery and meats.

  9. Dudley Pointdexter 3 years ago

    Their deli sells Boar’s Head, which already puts them ahead of Wegman’s

  10. Anonymous 3 years ago

    The nearest distribution center at this time is located in Georgia. This would certainly be even more of a load for the store, hopefully the next center in NC will handle it.

  11. Maureen A Wolfe 2 years ago

    Winchester/Frederick County in North West VA is desperately in need of a Publix store. Population has grown considerably over the last 10 years and continues to expand. We are over an hour from Leesburg and while Wegmans is good, it’s not as good as Publix , which I visited many times this winter while vacationing in HiltonHeac SC. We are also close to West VA on 2 sides of Frederick County and served heavily by I81 and RT 37
    Which circles Winchester. Winchester has been suffering for lack of groceries for several as years. Only one store here , other than Walmart, Martins ( owned by Giant) and very inadequate. Please, Please take a look at our far north Western location and see the possibility for yourself. You would own the area in no time flat. Maureen Wolfe

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