Dear PoP – LeDroit Park/Florida Ave Business Update

“Dear PoP,

I was wondering whether you had any news on Zee’s on Florida and 6th. It has been closed for a few weeks now. Is it permanently closed or renovating while waiting for alcohol license or family holiday? Feel like they were pioneers in a corner that will soon (hopefully) boom.

Meanwhile the market next to the Ethiopian place now is called Smada market (new sign) and seems like they are doing some works on the interiors.

Do you have any news on progress of the pizza place you announced on block of T btw 8th and 7th?

Finally Shawn’s tavern continues to plug along but no way they be ready to open before a few months I think.”

I know Zee’s, 600 Florida Ave. NW, was closed for renovations – anyone else have more details on when they plan on reopening?

Smada Market looks like it’s gonna be a regular bodega. It’s located in the former Yellow House space on the 600 block of T Street, NW.

The pizza place coming to 717 T St, NW is still awaiting permits and inspections.

Shaw’s Tavern says they will open on July 1st at 520 Florida Avenue NW. But looking in the window last weekend makes me think the actual date is a bit further down the road:

35 Comment

  • Pretty excited about Shaw’s Tavern. How far down florida can we stretch U street? Seriously though, looks like it has lots of potential.

    • theres really nothing else along florida east of shaw tavern that matters much.
      sadly, because i live along florida east of shaw tavern.

      there’s space at florida and 3rd that could house something.
      there are two empty lots at north capitol and florida than could use development. theres the old soul day spa space that could be cool. but nothing is in the works.

      • That, my friend, is what b-school types call a market gap. 😉

      • Once U turns into Florida – at least where it hits Ledroit Park, the options for retail and restaurants will go down a lot, but that doesn’t mean the development will slow down. I think the businesses that pop up in those spots that are available will have more of a neighborhood feel and will mean good things for the real estate down there. It won’t like like a major commercial strip like U St, but I think it will be enough to really impact the neighborhood, even if the development is sporadic.

        • We can hope. The last thing many people want is a main strip like u street.

          I can’t wait for retail and restaurants to open, but I don’t want a ton. Just a handful of really good ones that cater to the neighborhood.

          We are slowly getting density and in 5 years with all the projects being started now we will likely have a few thousand more units, plus all of the development of the current stock. That’s going to put a strain on our infrastructure and on parking.

          Having just the right nimbler of amenities will be important. I feel like some neighborhoods in dc have a bunch of unnecessary fat that is there with the good options.

          Hopefully the relative sparse number of commercially zoned properties will help this happen.

          • where are the few thousand more units?

          • Maybe not a thousand more units, but the huge development that is going to occupy almost the entire block with the Howard Theater is several floors of condos. That should spark at least some development further east (and westward pressure from the other development going in where the keg and ice place was on Florida east of N Cap). If the whole Fla/N Cap intersection ever gets redone it would help tremendously. I have no idea what is going on with the empty lot there.

            Not sure how much longer the smaller places will hold out. I really hope Zee’s comes back, it’s a great little neighborhood joint but the lack of liquor license is hurting.

            Shaw’s Tavern posted as of yesterday that they expect to open on 7/1. I share the skepticism.

            The owner of the lot on 3rd and Florida is holding out for what he hopes to be a big pay day. I hear that he won’t budge on the ridiculous price he believes the property is worth.

          • There are over 600 going in at eckington and Florida Ave. There are several hundred more going in at Florida and North Cap, plus some retail there too. Across from the Five Guys there’s another building that should start eventually. There’s the construction of Northwest One. In Shaw there is O Street Market.

            This will increase demand for amenities significantly.

            To JM below, I had to look at the zoning map, I didnt realize that there was so much commercial along Florida.

  • At Shaws Tavern – are they going to fix the molding/trim that was ripped off towards the top of the building?

  • Yesterday someone from Shaw’s Tavern littered all of LeDroit Park with flyers asking us to “like them” on facebook. Seriously, whoever spread the flyers was too fcking lazy to walk up three steps and stick in mail slot. They laid them on the first step of every house. This morning they are blowing all over the place. Welcome to the neighborhood assholes!

    • You are officially banned for life from going to Shaw’s Tavern.

    • It’s against the law to use a mail slot, or mail box, for anything other than actual US Postal Service mail. It’s the reason why you usually get carryout menus, or political advertisements, stuck in your door frame, or in the fence in front of your house.

      I’m not defending the practice, but that’s the reasoning.

  • The owner of Zees has a bit of a problem with the truth so I’m not sure how much of this to take for truth and how much to take with a grain of salt, but he has said that the restaurant has been sold and that his mom who used to do the cooking is going to be working with another place on H Street.

  • With the level of detail that has been given to the painting of Smada Deli Market, I’m sure Rick Smada is gonna be serving up some of the city’s best corned beef.

  • I liked Zee’s, but it seemed to be run more as a hobby than a business. It would be inexplicably closed on many a night.

  • well one interesting thing here is that ALL of florida ave on that stretch (at least between 9th & north capitol, maybe beyond) is dual zoned for commercial and residential, so there is pretty much limitless potential if the money is there. just think! it could be the next adams morgan! better start designing my nimby fliers.

  • I just wish I had enough cash to start something at P and NJ. That damn “coming soon” cafe is b.s. Would love to take the two remaining buildings on that island and turn them into a bistro/cafe with a garden opening up onto that plot of grass … c’est la vie

  • I’ll believe Shaw’s Tavern is cool when I see it. Isn’t the guy who owns the Anna Cooper house involved?

  • Im not surprised that there are questions coming up about Shaw’s Tavern’s quality of work or if their opening day will really be when they say it is.

    These are the same group of people working on Engine Company 12 who lobbed grenades at neighborhood organizations and ANCs for failing to support a liquor license that they a.) hadnt applied for yet and b.) never requested support for.

    They seem like amateurs and one of the folks has quite a reputation around the neighborhood for doing shoddy and half assed work as a contractor and as a developer. As much as I want them to succeed, Im worried that these are the wrong people for the job.

    • Anon said it better than me. I’m fairly nervous about Shaw Tavern because it’s a space with such potential and I think this ownership group is going to screw it up. Opening a restaurant isn’t easy even when you’re competent.

      • Isn’t Shaw’s Tavern related to Liberty Tavern? Liberty is a huge success over in Clarendon. So I think they have the experience. And, I think the shutters and bay windows look great! Perhaps better in real life than in the photo.

        • No, its not related. At some point, the shaw tavern folks said they were using liberty tavern as a concept.

          • Aha – thanks for the clarification! I have no opinion on the experience then. But I am still excited for it to open, even if the date slips, as seems to be the case with most ventures in DC.

          • steve may is involved in both places. also engine company 12 on north capitol.

    • I like how the guy made a huge deal about getting community sign off on his application and promised to post it weeks ago… but…. looking at it’s still not up.

      He did however, put his ‘the community is to blame for me not knowing how to manage this thing’ online.

  • I wonder how long of a memory the person who sent in the question has regarding the area. One could say that Pyramids, which was located on the corner a few years back and didn’t last very long, was a “pioneer” as well.

    The change coming to that part of the city is slow, and comes in fits and starts, and has for years.

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