Bookstores aren’t dead. Amazon Just Announced its 17th Bookstore to Open in Bethesda, Maryland

Today is a great day, one where we should celebrate the revival of bookstores, because Amazon’s seventeenth store has been confirmed for Maryland. It’s going to be built in the Bethesda Row shopping center which is located about 5 miles from the Amazon Books location in DC.

From Bethesda Beat:

The Bethesda bookstore will open at 7117 Arlington Road, in a space currently occupied by the home furnishing store Urban Country, a source told the Bethesda Beat on Monday. Urban Country in October announced plans to move next door to 7121 Arlington Road, taking over the former City Sports spot.

“We are excited to be bringing Amazon Books to Bethesda Row in Bethesda, Maryland and we are currently hiring store managers and associates,” Amazon Books spokesperson Alexandra Woodworth wrote in a statement. “Stay tuned for additional details down the road.”

A building permit application for the Amazon store was filed with the county on Nov. 8 for a $1.5 million project to renovate the roughly 6,000-square-foot space.

Bethesda Row is one of those American inventions stemming from not having good public transit. It is a development where multi-story retail and office buildings face the street and wrap around a parking garage.

The new Amazon Books location is about a block from a Barnes & Noble store that is closing at the end of the year, but the geographic proximity is really all they have in common. B&N is leaving a 3-story space, while Amazon is opening a 6,000 square foot store (a corner space, to be exact).

According to Google Maps, there are no other bookstores in the area; the closest is in DC. This makes Bethesda fertile ground for Amazon’s brick-and-mortar retail empire.

image  by SounderBruce

Nate Hoffelder

View posts by Nate Hoffelder
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader. He has been blogging about indie authors since 2010 while learning new tech skills weekly. He fixes author sites, and shares what he learns on The Digital Reader's blog. In his spare time, he fosters dogs for A Forever Home, a local rescue group.


  1. tdonline14 November, 2017

    I was bummed about BN leaving downtown Bethesda so having another bookstore open up just a block down the street is good news. BN in Bethesda served as an anchor for downtown and for all their screwups, I was sad to see them go. I switched from Nook to the Paperwhite a couple of years ago so I’m hardly one to talk…but as happy as I am to see a B&M bookstore in downtown Bethesda, I can’t help feel bad for BN. I appreciate Amazon very much but some competition, however weak from BN, is needed.

  2. Carmen Webster Buxton14 November, 2017

    Interesting. Bethesda is a very upscale area, and even though it’s a suburb of DC, it’s actually more urban, in that it also has a downtown area. Bethesda Row isn’t a shopping center in the sense of being an enclosed mall; it’s more of a cluster of shops with pedestrian access from the street and a sort of alley/walkway. I find it interesting that Amazon chose this area for a store.

  3. BDR14 November, 2017

    I’ve never been in one but from what I’ve read, it’s not really a traditional bookstore. Bookstore of the future, perhaps, but I don’t think they’re competing with a B&N or an indie bookstore. My theory is that, like Whole Foods, it’s a way to monetize mini-distribution centers contained in the back.

    Like most Amazon ventures, it’s a pretty smart idea.

    1. Nate Hoffelder14 November, 2017

      I always thought this was less about selling books than accumulating data.

  4. Allen F14 November, 2017

    Heh, funny how this ‘isn’t’ what trad-pub wanted to hear. 😉

    1. Nate Hoffelder15 November, 2017

      LOL. no

  5. Steve H.14 November, 2017

    I will take a look when they open…curious.

  6. […] the hot bookstore news this month includes Amazon's new stores in Atlanta and Bethesda, B&N's new restaurant bookstores in Dallas and Ashburn, VA (opening on 2 November), and […]

  7. […] is more new stores than we've seen from anyone other than Amazon, which has opened or announced 17 bookstores (16 stores, actually , plus one that isn't official yet) in the past couple years, but what is […]


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