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Wal-Mart Likely Coming to DC

by Will Smith

Wal-Mart Likely Coming to DC: Figure 1

Wal-Mart may open its first location within the District, according to a report by The Washington Post. While not yet certain, the company is "expected" to sign a lease this fall for space near the intersection of New York Avenue and Bladensburg Road near the city's northeast border with Maryland (map).

The location is the same that renowned local developer Jim Abdo had planned to develop into a massive billion-dollar mixed-use project. Those plans unraveled earlier this year due to lack of financing. Abdo himself told The Post that he believes the site could be perfect for Wal-Mart given its location as a gateway to the city. "When you've got 80,000 cars that go by your front door, that's about as good as it gets from a retail perspective."

The news that Wal-Mart could be coming to DC has already (and predictably) stirred debate. Supporters argue that it will bring jobs and economic activity to the city, and offer a good retail alternative for lower-income residents in particular. They also point out that having a Wal-Mart within the District versus in nearby Virginia or Maryland will keep the revenue in the city. Detractors worry that it will worsen traffic at an already congested intersection. Many are also opposed to Wal-Mart on principle due to its reputation for poor treatment of employees and the harm it can do to local retailers.

There is one thing that both sides appear to agree on, however: Wal-Mart would be a more economic utilization of the land than the current tenants, which include a strip club and used auto parts shops.

See other articles related to: wal-mart, new york avenue, dclofts, bladensburg road, abdo

This article originally published at http://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/wal-mart_likely_coming_to_dc/2235

6 Comments

  1. MIss V said at 4:33 pm on Tuesday July 6, 2010:
    I'm indifferent towards Wal-Mart itself. I just hope that they implement an urban model (2-3 stories) with a smaller footprint. DC is not a suburban or rural area and should not have a spread out Big Box store.
  1. whoa_now said at 9:48 pm on Tuesday July 6, 2010:
    3 words: WalMart Soccer Stadium. Extend the streetcar up from Benning road via bladensburg road. WalMart helps finance a new DC united Soccer stadium. Near H street/bars/food-all reachable by streetcars/metro. 22,500 seat stadium with walmart where the parking usually goes...in the basement. Plenty of parking on that block that can slowly be converted to other sweet things. Plus this allows peeps with out cars to check out the sweet sweet Arboretum. pipedream.
  1. Les said at 3:51 pm on Wednesday July 7, 2010:
    Since Costco will be located on New York Avenue at South Dakota Avenue just as you come off the Baltimore-Washington Parkway, the new Walmart will be located just a few blocks away. This is a brilliant move for Abdo! Abdo, sure likes to cause trouble. He has enough opponents to his Catholic University project. These same opponents successfully fought back Walmart five years ago from taking up residence at the Rhode Island Avenue metro stop just within a half mile of the new Walmart sight on New York Avenue. How much money is Abdo getting from this deal since he is leasing his property to Walmart? That area was supposed to be a casino 7 years ago, then within the past 3 years Abdo acquired the land for his luxury housing/mixed used project, now it's destined to be the first future home on Walmart in DC. Interesting history.
  1. Paul said at 6:18 am on Thursday July 8, 2010:
    @Les - Jim Abdo is not the current landowner. Abdo had a contingent deal to buy the land if he could secure financing for his development project. He could not so the transaction fell through. Two brothers who operate a taxi cab company on the site are the landowners. This is all in the WaPo article Will linked to. In the future you might want to read the sourced articles rather than manufacture your own "facts".
  1. anthony k. wilson said at 5:39 am on Monday July 19, 2010:
    i can not wait to see walmart.
  1. Charmaine said at 10:40 am on Thursday November 11, 2010:
    Damn, you would think that people would be excited to see some sort of positive growth coming into the city after how many years of "financial/economical gridlock" ? But, then again, if it was a Target, then everyone would be singing a different tune.

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