The last two years have been rough for Loving's. In early 2004, proponents of a now-abandoned plan to build a new ballpark in Shockoe Bottom identified the Loving's building as one of those that might have to be demolished.
In August 2004, the remnants of Tropical Storm Gaston inundated the company's headquarters at 1601 E. Grace St. A few months later, in October 2004, a fire caused by an electrical problem, investigators say ruined an empty Broad Street warehouse it owned.
Then in July 2005, a fire apparently sparked by lightning damaged the company's Grace Street building. City inspectors found that the building had numerous structural problems and forbade Loving's to move back in.
The company chose to move to Chesterfield County "just maybe because it's time to," Royster says. "Better facilities, I guess." The move will be a momentous one for Loving's, which has operated in Shockoe Bottom for more than 60 years. "We're going to miss being down there, to be honest with you," Royster says.
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