Another ahead of the curve moment: Trader Joe's to open in DC's Union Market district
DC's next Trader Joe's coming to Union Market"), the Trader Joe's food store group is opening a store at 4th Street and Florida Avenue NE, in the Union Market district near the NoMA Metrorail station.
In testimony I gave/submitted to the DC Zoning Commission concerning a project in what is now again called the Union Market District, a wholesale and retail food district in Northeast Washington, DC, I laid out a framework for a retail plan and public space improvements, including an analysis of gaps in the retail offer and suggestions on how to fill those gaps, including recruiting particular store marques, including Trader Joe's.
-- "Retail planning and Florida Market"
Although at that time I figured to get Trader Joe's an incentive payment would have to be proffered, as I hadn't foreseen the speed at which the area is adding population, as well as the resurgence of the market district after the repositioning of the Farmer's Market building after a fire which pushed out most of the old tenants, who focused on satisfying the needs of low income consumers, in favor of the creation of a food hall with restaurants and vendors selling artisinal and higher priced goods.
Interestingly, despite the company's reputation as a low price provider, a survey of supermarket pricing by Washington Consumer Checkbook ("How Do Trader Joe's and Aldi's Prices Compare to Supermarkets'?") found when weighted for package size, prices at Trader Joe's are comparable to the area's major supermarket chains, Safeway and Giant (although recently Safeway's prices seem to have taken a significant upward jump), although produce prices average about 10% lower, according to the survey. (Also see "Which Supermarkets are best for price and quality").
The Union Market area is quickly moving away from its somewhat dingy and disinvested state.
For the longest time, that part of Northeast had access to one grocery store, the Safeway at Hechinger Mall.
Now they have additional access to Harris-Teeter and Giant, with a Whole Foods and a Trader Joe's coming, not to mention an upscale food hall, all within walking distance, and Walmart (ugh) and MOM's Organic Supermarket within an easy bike or car trip, and the Walmart is easily accessible by transit.