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Somebody told Prince of Petworth that Ace Hardware was negotiating a lease for space 7th and H Street NE, where Fashion One closed recently. In D.C., that could pretty much be only one person: Gina Schaefer, who’s started stores in Logan Circle, Takoma Park, Tenleytown, Glover Park, and Mount Vernon Triangle (although independent stores have also cropped up in Mt. Pleasant and Petworth). Reached by email, she confirms that she’s been looking around H Street—-who isn’t, really?—-but hasn’t settled on a spot.
That might be the death knell for Park’s Hardware two blocks away, which is still open every day but Sunday, but doesn’t seem to have much business. Schaefer is a smart operator: She looks for neighborhoods with lots of old houses that need lots of maintenance and makes sure each store is individually branded for the neighborhood, while enjoying the nationwide buying power of the Ace network.
Still, I doubt she’d take the whole Fashion One space, which is huge—-it’s likely part of some larger development in the works.