I forgot to put this on the list, but this one grinds my gears. Every now and again we get another update or so about whether the elusive Ellwood Thompson's grocery store will open in DC USA. Inevitably, we also hear from people who are clamoring for the store, always a bunch of whine whine whine about the apparent lack of a "good" grocery store in the area.
Given the decline in the economy and so-forth, Ellwood Thompson's has put the project on hold. However, Councilmember Jim Graham has been sure to include tax breaks for the Richmond-based grocer, should they ever make it to D.C.
For 2010, I make the following proclamation:
OUT: Ellwood Thompson's at DC USA
IN: Shopping at one of the THREE grocery stores within a 0.5 mile radius of DC USA.
There is absolutely no need for the District to give Ellwood Thompson's a tax break to install yet another grocery store in an already filled market. The tax breaks being used were to bring stores to under-served areas, and I don't care what you say, this area is not under-served. Look at this map, excuse the poor quality, I don't have access to Photoshop and I'm under a time crunch:
OK, so if you live in Columbia Heights proper, you can grocery shop at Target and Giant. There's the Safeway in Adams Morgan (recently renovated, by the way) which is roughly half a mile from DC USA. There's also the Harris Teeter on Kalorama, which is also a half mile from DC USA. If you live in Petworth, well, you've got a Safeway and a YES Organic Market, and if you're going down to Columbia Heights... bam, you've got the Target and the Giant.
So really, why the obsession with Ellwood Thompson's? If you're so obsessed to get your Arugula or whatever it is you need so badly that Giant doesn't have, take the Circulator down to Whole Foods. It takes all of 10 minutes (or less).
Speaking of which, what's the deal with the Giant haters? Giant has cheap prices and the widest selection in the whole area. Oh yeah, I like the fancy atmosphere of Harris Teeter as much as the next person, and the samples are great, but $3.99 for store brand marinara sauce? Really? $5.99 for some Ricotta cheese? Screw that noise, Giant's got store brand that's the same exact thing.
So come on, don't spend our tax dollars on bringing some stupid upscale grocery store to an already brimming with selection market. I don't like seeing vacant storefronts at DC USA but thems the breaks for the Great Recession. If it were so profitable to open at DC USA, they would have done it already. Move along now, maybe we can get another furniture store. Crate and Barrel anyone?