Re-Open the Glover Park Whole Foods
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It has been almost one year since the Glover Park Whole Foods Market closed to renovate in March 2017 to mitigate a rodent infestation.
For those who do not know, the reason for the now eleven-month closure is due to a legal battle between the Landlord, Wical Limited Partnership (LP), a subsidiary of DC real estate development firm S.C. Herman & Associates, Inc., and the Tenant, Whole Foods Market.The Washington Business Journal provides a good recap of the current legal situation. Read the article here.
To summarize, after gutting the store's interior to mitigate the rodent issue, Whole Foods wanted (and still wants) to renovate and re-open the store, but the landlord, Wical LP, blocked (and continues to block) Whole Foods market from doing so. From the Washington Business Journal:
"Wical refused to sign off on the renovations, preventing Whole Foods from filing for a building permit. Wical then filed a notice of default against Whole Foods because the store had been closed for more than 60 days, something that is prohibited in the lease. Whole Foods sued its landlord in June. The Jan. 23 order, however, found that Whole Foods was not in violation of its lease because the extended closure was due to circumstances beyond the grocer’s control: namely, the rodent infestation and the landlord’s refusal to approve the renovation plan."
Whole Foods Market has been a fixture in the Glover Park community for more than 20 years. Our community has relied on the natural grocer for its quality offerings (and its effect on our property values), and now its re-opening relies on community action. Without taking action, Glover Park residents might lose Whole Foods permanently. We'll be subject to the endless number of possibilities for a replacement tenant, and we might get one we don't want. Additionally, retailers on Wisconsin Avenue in Glover Park have suffered greatly with a drop-off of foot traffic which was previously driven by the Whole Foods. We fear that these tenants will ultimately be forced to close their doors if foot traffic does not revert to historical levels soon.
The decisions of a party outside of the Glover Park community, Wical LP, continue to impact the daily lives of Glover Park's residents. It is imperative that we come together as a community to urge Wical LP to come to terms with Whole Foods and re-open the store in Glover Park as soon as possible.
Whole Foods representatives have engaged with the Glover Park community to provide status updates throughout the past year. Whole Foods reps have consistently stated that Whole Foods wants to re-open at 2323 Wisconsin Ave NW. We need to use our collective voice to state the same desire to Wical LP.
Wical LP is the subsidiary of a DC real estate development company (S.C. Herman & Associates, Inc.) and should care about how their decisions impact DC's neighborhoods. The Glover Park community urges Wical LP to settle with Whole Foods Market and re-open the store at 2323 Wisconsin Ave NW. The Glover Park community does not want a new tenant, the community wants Whole Foods Market.
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