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Old Happy’s site set to bring back flea market

Updated: May. 10, 2021 at 4:53 PM EDT
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ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ) - The old Happy’s sign along Williamson Rd. may be more familiar than the new one now in its place, advertising Roanoke’s first and only drive-thru self-storage facility.

“At one point in time there were over 400 vendors here, and on a given weekend afternoon there would be 1,100 shoppers here visiting this site,” said developer Jim Cherney.

Cherney has known about the property which spans 11 acres since 2017.

Construction began three years later to turn Happy’s, which closed for good in 2016, into Fort Knox Self Storage.

“With our operation you just drive up to and into your individual unit, there’s no standing outside in the sunshine, the rain or the snow,” explained Cherney.

But part of the nature of Happy’s was being outside, and according to Cherney, within the next month, an outside flea market is set to return.

It’ll take place in the back four acres of the property, under the name of ‘Happier Days.’

“We’re hoping to have 400 folks that are interested in moving their goods through the flea market system and hopefully introducing another 1,000 people a weekend to visit and take advantage of the goods and wares that they can get nowhere else in Roanoke,” said Cherney.

Cherney was always hopeful to bring back the essence of Happy’s in some capacity and says this property, in addition to the flea market, and storage, will also have office spaces, including the new home of Williamson Road Area Business Association.

“I think that once we shine a lot on the economic opportunities that are afforded to not just this neighborhood, but this site, we’ll have a dynamic response,” said Cherney.

If you’re interested in purchasing a space at the flea market, you can find out more information on how to do that here.

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