The Map Shop, which has operated for nearly two decades at Kings and Morehead, is moving to a bigger spot in South End.
Tony and Katie Rodono, who bought the Map Shop in 2016, say that the move comes as their business is expanding — something you don’t usually hear a lot of when it comes to the sale of printed paper.
For one, e-commerce sales keep rising, Tony told the Agenda, and the shop needs more production space. Even though maps are readily available digitally, many people still crave printed maps.
“When people frame a map, they want to have it forever. It’s different from just looking at a map on your phone,” Tony says. “That’s fun for a lot of people.”
One thing that’s helped the business over the years, Tony says, is the fact that the customer base is diverse. You never know who will through the door, he adds: travelers looking to document their trips, business-to-business customers like sales representative planning their territories, or decorators looking for something unique.
A recent acquisition also has made the Map Shop’s growth possible, Tony says. In December, the company bought the assets of the map division of American Educational Products, a Wisconsin company started in 1976 that specializes in raised relief maps.
“The recent acquisition really forced our hand,” Tony says. “We were bursting at the seems prior to that.”
The relocation of the Map Shop opens up a prominent, 4,000-square-foot space on a busy corner.
Ted and Patrice Northrup opened The Map Shop in 1991 on South Boulevard and moved it to its current location in 2000, the Observer wrote in 2016. Its exact current address is 1500 East Morehead.
The Map Shop’s new spot will be a 5,000-square-foot space at the South End Business Park, near the intersection of Clanton and South Tryon. The shop will print, frame, and manufacture all its maps on site.
The move takes place April 1.