A group of DC residents is taking matters into its own hands to bring more grocery options east of the Anacostia River.
While the announcement that Good Food Markets is opening a location on South Capitol Street offered some relief to neighborhoods east of the Anacostia, fresh food options in Wards 7 and 8 remain relatively scarce compared to elsewhere in the city, with three full-service grocery stores for roughly 150,000 people.
The Community Grocery Cooperative (CGC) has renewed a push to establish a co-op grocery store in Ward 7 or 8. While the store is likely years from becoming a reality, the idea is to establish a place which could either inspire or fund similar co-ops elsewhere in the city or region. The effort coincides with others to give communities east of the River more control over the future of their wards, including the crowdfunding efforts for Benning Market and the Douglass Community Land Trust.
The initial goal is to amass 300 members, at which point the group will be able to elect members to various boards and committees (eg. directors, steering, advisory, etc.) and conduct a feasibility study. The study will facilitate the planning phase of the project, after which the group will be able to move toward implementing a co-op with a physical location. The individuals steering the efforts have been in contact with the national Food Cooperative Initiative organization, as well as with other co-ops in the area to get advice on strategy. Ideally, by the time the store opens, there will be tens of thousands of members.
The majority of funding will originate with the co-ops members, who can join and get a lifetime membership with a one-time fee of $100. Although membership is not restricted to residents of Wards 7 and 8, the idea is that the voices of those residents should take priority throughout the process. At the end of each year the co-op is operating, members can vote on what to do with the year's profit (eg. split evenly among the members, reinvest in a community program or another co-op, etc.).
The average co-op takes 5-6 years to open, although some who attended a meeting on Saturday noted the sense of urgency needed to take advantage of burgeoning tools like Opportunity Zones, which have already been integral to some real estate deals since the law's inception, despite sparse final regulations.
In the meantime, CGC is focusing on spreading awareness and expanding their membership base.
This article originally published at https://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/east-of-the-river-residents-organize-to-create-grocery-co-op/15290.
Most Popular... This Week • Last 30 Days • Ever
Why condo fees are high in some buildings and low in others can be a difficult questi... read »
When sellers haven't quite lined up their next house before their settlement date com... read »
In this edition of First-Timer Primer, we look into the question of how to determine ... read »
The preferred mortgage product among most home buyers is the fixed-rate mortgage. How... read »
Here's what you need to know about reporting profit made from the sale of your home.... read »
UrbanTurf has compiled virtual looks at large new developments around the DC region.... read »
Virginia's homebuyer assistance programs can seem complex. This edition of First-Time... read »
In this edition of First Timer Primer, we take a closer look at what you are actually... read »
To help home buyers and sellers both novice and seasoned, UrbanTurf is running a seri... read »
A recent transaction shows that the housing market isn't cooling off everywhere.... read »
With this weekend's DC houseboat tour a day away, UrbanTurf thought it only fitting t... read »
President Obama travels to Denver this morning to sign the stimulus bill that has bee... read »
In this week's installment of Ask An Agent, a reader wonders if there is a rule for h... read »
As The Wharf prepares to begin construction, DC's houseboat community heads to its ne... read »
In this week's installment of Ask An Agent, a reader asks a fairly common question th... read »
DC Real Estate Guides
Short guides to navigating the DC-area real estate market
We've collected all our helpful guides for buying, selling and renting in and around Washington, DC in one place. Visit guides.urbanturf.com or start browsing below!
Intro guides for first-time home buyers
Awesome and unusual real estate from across the DC Metro