Here’s what we know:
- They’re considering opening multiple locations.
- They have probably agreed to meet average grocery store wages in D.C.
- They’re looking in Ward 7, but not at Skyland Town Center, though they had initially expressed interest.
- They looked hard at a site on New York Avenue and Bladensburg Road NE.
- They’ve already passed over Poplar Point.
Here’s what I heard this morning from a labor advocate: Councilmember Michael Brown said that the mega-retailer was also looking at space around Fort Totten, as well as the old Curtis Chevrolet at 5929 Georgia Avenue, now that its life as Fenty HQ is over. That’s not a huge site, but it could probably hold one of the “urban” model stores that Walmart has been plunking down around the country, which can be as small as 20,000 square feet.
As far as other locations, both the McMillan Sand Filtration site and Walter Reed are slated to get grocery stores—but they’re probably too far off, and the surrounding communities have expressed little desire for big box stores. Plus, since those sites are public land, the city could extract concessions from Walmart in the form of wage and hour standards that it might not be willing to accept. CityInterests’ South Capitol Shopping Center, though, might be willing to take what it can get.
Where will the ‘Mart decide to land? Watch your backyard!
UPDATE, 1:00 p.m. – Oh look, Mike DeBonis had all of this (and more!) at 11:30 a.m. So go read him instead.