Shaw Giant in O Street Market Grand Reopening Ceremony Tonight at 6pm – Have a Look Inside

7th and O Street, NW Today

November 2010

Update: “The first 500 shoppers through the register tomorrow receive a $10 gift card.” Doors open 10am.

From a press release:

“Grand opening, ribbon cutting ceremony and six-week long celebration at the Giant at O Street Market in Washington, D.C., Thursday, November 21st at 6:00pm. [The store opens to the public tomorrow November 22]

Giant will make a donation of $2,500 to Bread for the City, a local organization making a big difference in the community during Thursday’s Grand Reopening Celebration.

The Historic O Street Market, built in 1881 and once a bustling meeting place for politicos, city vendors, and Washingtonians, is marking its vibrant return to the Shaw neighborhood. The cornerstone of this development is the new, 72,000-square foot Giant Food—one of the largest grocery stores in the District. The new Giant at O street market combines the charm of a 19thcentury marketplace with 21st century efficiency and innovation.

Over the next four weekends, Giant at O Street Market customers will enjoy raffles, tastings, prizes, and more.

Giant is dedicated to improving and growing its stores in Washington, D.C., Northern Virginia, Maryland, and Delaware. Throughout its 77 year history, Giant has remained committed to providing the highest level of quality, value, and service to its customers. Giant opened its first store in 1936, in the District of Columbia.

The Giant at O Street Market includes a café with Wi-Fi and a seating area above the historic market-style produce aisles. Shoppers will enjoy an extensive beer and wine section, offering high-end, selections that can be taken home, enjoyed in the café or while perusing the aisles for the week’s dinners. More than 1,400 selections of wine from around the globe will be available in the updated beverage section. Other great features include a large natural and organic section, an expanded deli featuring sandwiches made to order and a hot pizza bar, and a fresh sushi bar. The store will also have convenient and neighborhood-friendly below-grade parking.

More than a quarter of the new store, including the produce section, resides under the historic O Street Market structure. Original brick masonry was used in the design of the exterior wall, along with reconstructed steel trusses and the original roof design, recreated from archival photos. A clear skylight above the original market area overlooks the current produce section, similar to the natural light of the original structure.

Listed on both the National Register of Historic Place and the District of Columbia Inventory of Historic Sites, the O Street Market remains one of only two 19th century public markets still standing in the District.”

I was able to get an updated sneak preview yesterday, have a look:


More photos after the jump.












69 Comment

  • best looking Giant i’ve ever seen

  • Glad they have tasteful signage on the outside. Looks great on the inside.

  • Rave! Rave! Rave! I used to shop at that old Giant and I walk by this place twice a day every day. It’s been awesome to watch it go up, and to see the transformation from a parking lot, to a giant hole in the ground, to a huge construction site, and now to a great place to get my bananas, Veuve Clicquot and copies of InTouch magazine and The Globe on the way home. (Kidding, I hate bananas. Ha.)
    Additional rave: Having walked past hundreds of construction sites in my life, I have to say that I was always impressed with the politeness and professionalism of all of the workers on this site. They were friendly and pleasant, and often made way for pedestrians even if it meant a little extra work for them.

  • Gorgeous! I love that it’s a Giant too -not some chi-chi super pricey market.

    Fingers crossed that this alleviates some of the issues at the Colombia Heights Giant.

  • Gorgeous store. Champagne is not wine, and most of those beers are foreign and/or not craft beers.

    • Champagne is not wine? I suspect the French would beg to differ.

      • Yeah, I suspect not just the French would disagree. Facts would disagree. Champagne is most certainly wine. Champagne is made from fermented grapes (e.g. Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Meunier).

        • They probably meant to say “sparkling wine is not champagne”.
          In order to be called champagne, it must be made in the Champagne region of France. Otherwise, it is sparkling wine. Much like all bourbon is whiskey, but not all whiskey is bourbon. Or, all Scotch is whiskey but not all whiskey is Scotch. There are some delicious sparkling wines that rival the best champagnes though.

          • Party on, Wayne!

          • Thanks for the lesson in Stuff Most People Already Know. There is nothing about “Champagne is not wine” that would suggest the writer meant “sparkling wine is not champagne.” That’s a nonsense assumption. The commenter appears to attempt a critique of the store’s placement of a wine sale sign on champagne bottles.

    • Prince Of Petworth

      There are a lot more beers than is pictured here. This is one small section – the section goes around the corner and is huge.

    • I notice there are balloons in front of the bakery. Balloons are not a bakery item.

  • And they are already full stocked with The Globe!

  • Those cramped checkout lines appear to have cluster potential. But the monstrosity street lamps at each register are amazing!

  • I’ve never found a store that beats Costco’s pricing on Veuve Cliequot. Everywhere else is always atleast $20 more per bottle.

  • This is amazing. And a game-changer for this neighborhood.

    • Agreed. I’m almost jealous I don’t live over in that direction anymore. I remember dreading my twice weekly trips to the original Giant.

  • Nice looking store, but despite the claim most the beer on offer is neither American nor craft.

  • thanks for the great photo tour. fyi…Giant has soft opening at noon today for shoppers…don’t wait for the ribbon cutting. you can experience an amazing shopping experience this afternoon. Ribbon cutting ceremonies start at 5 with lots of events for adults and kids.

  • So exciting! Hoping I can sneak in for a quick shop/oggle before the ribbon cutting!

  • Mixed feelings about this….it’s unfortunate the market is now a chain supermarket and not something with individual vendors like Eastern Market. However, it’s helpful the vendor is Giant and not Whole Foods, since prices for basics should be affordable to most in the neighborhood and they’ll take food stamps. Still, it’s a Giant, which means that once the shiny luster of newness wears off, the place will likely be poorly managed, poorly stocked, and run by employees who don’t appear to care about customer service. Here’s to hoping for the best, and being glad this is now opening up.

    • Not to be a d*ck but there is a correlation between cheaper places falling apart faster with crappyer service than more expensive places not following suit. l

      • Yeah, valid point. But I’d blame the correlation more on the low quality of the managerial staff hired by Giant than anything else. Whole Foods salaries aren’t that great for cashiers (see: yet from my interactions the staff are generally helpful. I avoid Giant simply because my interactions with their staff have been horrendous. As far as maintaining adequate stock of anything, I have no idea how a store expects to function profitably if it has nothing to sell. And empty shelves have been my experience all too often at other Giants.

    • big win for the union. unfortunately, big loss for neighborhood consumers.

    • I’m pretty sure that you can use food stamps at Whole Foods.

      • Yes, Whole Foods does take food stamps. But $250/month for a family of 4 goes a lot further at Giant that Whole Foods.

    • There’s been a Giant in that city block for as long as I can remember…Anyone know when O Street Market shut down and/or Giant opened here? I think it looks great! Especially considering for years it was a dirty grocery store with a litter-filled parking lot and a burnt-out building on the corner!

  • justinbc

    From an architectural stance this part of the block-wide project is beautiful. Someone would be hard pressed to criticize what Giant has done here.

  • clevelanddave

    It is a great and wonderful thing to have this grocery store but it is a bit of a farce to say “Listed on both the National Register of Historic Place and the District of Columbia Inventory of Historic Sites, the O Street Market remains one of only two 19th century public markets still standing in the District.” It is not a market, and except for parts of two exterior walls there is absolutely nothing historical about it. This façade is a charade from an historic preservation standpoint. Just sayin’

  • Oh, how I’ve waited for this moment! +1 on the relief that this is a non-fancy grocery store. Hopefully it will be staffed adequately for what I’m sure will be huge demand.

  • I walked around the whole project this morning. The Giant does look amazing – one billion percent improvement over the sad Giant that was there before. The project overall doesn’t look half bad, though I understand some are concerned about the green apartment building. I don’t feel passionate about the material one way or the other.
    What did strike me as really sad, though, is how insular the project feels. Walking the perimeter, there are virtually no retail spaces that face 7th, 9th, O or P Streets. Only a couple that face inward towards the new 8th Street, and even those are mostly on the west side – it looks like Giant takes up 100% of the east side. Add into that the new block of 8th Street looks and feels like a private plaza, rather than looking and feeling like a real city street (like the new streets going through City Center a few blocks south) and it makes the whole project carry the weight of a much more intense “Disney-fied” feeling than what I’d expected.
    The building strikes me as the type of thing an architectural team out of small-town Nebraska might come up with. Something that people who had never actually been to a city might envision “urban” to look like that they’d include in their portfolio with buzzwords like “density” written nearby – not something that someone who actually understands the ways cities interact and breathe would develop. First three blocks of the convention center facing in and not relating to 9th or 7th at all – now this. It’s like the city is *trying* to kill those corridors by forcing them to all be one-side-of-the-street only. Kinda sad.

    • Exactly about the insular and private plaza. Citycenter is doing the same thing. Instead of actively trying to be part of existing commercial corridors they’re turning their backs on it and trying to create these Disney-fied ‘inner spaces’. That 1400 block of 9th is in the same position engagement-wise as they were before, except that there will be people who can gaze down at them. Is the 8th St. design only for the Citymarket residents and nearby residents? Who else traveling up or down 7th or 9th on foot. is going to cut over to take that single block of 8th to then go out and get back on the major route. They can create the space but it remains to be seen if people can be corralled in that way.

      • I guess it depends where you are going. I live on the 600 block of Q and will definitely walk on 8th on my way from downtown. Before they started construction I used to cut through that surface parking lot and get hooted at by the guys in lawn chairs. This is better.

  • Also: this place now requires a Bikeshare station. We should all pile on with that suggestion at the official place to do so:

    • +1,000. There’s no bikeshare stations for three blocks north or south and four blocks east or west of CityMarket. Putting one right in the freaking middle of the project on 8th Street would be a wonderful idea. I wonder why Shaw Main Streets (who’s been given a lot of cash by the developer) didn’t insist on one as a community amenity. The Capitol Riverfront BID has been really successful at asking developers to add them in to new projects at the developer’s expense.

      • I asked Capital Bikeshare if they were planning to put a station there after the market opened, and they said no. Getting one in the next tranche of stations will depend on suggestions to the website above, but pressure from community organizations would probably help the process along as well.

        • That’s why I’m so confused as to why the ANC or SMS didn’t force the issue on the developer. The stations are pretty expensive – $50-$80k, if I recall correctly, depending on how big they are and how many bikes they hold. DDOT won’t usually pay for it unless they’re doing one of those big lumps of new stations, and developers won’t unless they get pressured into doing it.

  • Looks awesome. Maybe I should do a walk up 7th St and go to this Giant as I did in 2002 when I first moved here to “check out DC” and freaked my suburban kid butt out.

    • this article sucks. tries to be a “tribute” to a family destroyed by violence, but fails at that… only really serves to reinforce racial stereotypes. lazy reporter.

  • Just got back from shopping there this morning. It’s beautiful inside! And they sell growlers!!!!

  • ” Shoppers will enjoy an extensive beer and wine section, offering high-end, selections that can be taken home, enjoyed in the café or while perusing the aisles for the week’s dinners. ”

    So does this mean people will be walking around shopping and drinking…but only with their “high end, selections”?

  • Oh how I wish that was the one in Columbia Heights….

  • I’d also like to comment on how wonderful the work crews have been. Thank you for building us such a beautiful Giant and keeping traffic disruptions to a minimum!

  • I now realize how much of a scrub I am: I would consider a store where one sips wine while shopping or watch others from a berch while sipping one’s coffee to a very fancy store indeed.

  • skj84

    I don’t live anywhere near this Giant and I want to do my shopping there. Love that the original architecture was incorporated into the design. Love that can sip wine while shopping. Actually that is my main reason for being so intrigued with this place. I hate grocery shopping and wine would make the ordeal just that much easier. I definitely will check it out sometime.

  • That heinous drop ceiling at checkout is so not necessary and needs to go! Talk about harkening back to the 1980s. Otherwise very pleased here.

  • Got my grand opening coupon book in the mail yesterday, so I’ll be over there claiming my free eggs and butter soon!

  • Hello Giant! Goodbye Safeway (4th and L St)!! To think that we had to endure that dreadful Safeway at City Vista the entire time it took to rebuild this Giant. The wait is over!! Went to the new Giant today and it’s amazing. The day has come. Welcome back Giant!!

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