One Way to Protest the new Subway coming to Mount Pleasant

3174 Mount Pleasant Street, NW

Thanks to a reader for sending:

“Also apparently they’re are people in the neighborhood who are protesting against Subway and have started a #subwayeatsh*t campaign and are projecting a slideshow on to the wall of the Subway.”

Update: Another reader sends a shot of emoji overload:


109 Comment

  • Wait. Let me guess. They’d rather have a Chop’t or a Sweetgreen.

    • They are better!

    • This site has been available for lease since 2011. (according the google street view) Where were these protesters then? I love the mentality that you can sit back and do nothing and then complain when you don’t get what you wanted.

      • Everyone wants their neighborhood to be “The Next 14th Street.”
        FREE MONEY, YAY!!!!

      • justinbc

        The best way to ensure you get the business you want is to start it yourself. Oh wait, you can’t do that? Tough subway.

        • Image if the #subwayeatsh*t people had spent the last three years creating buzz and contacting local business about a location in their neighborhood that would make a great spot for expansion. This way they get businesses with built in customers. Sounds like a much more positive use of their time.

          • Can we borrow your projector to protest the 7-11 coming in at Quincy & 14th St? You think a Subway is bad? It could be worse.

  • #OnlyInMtP would people protest this. I suppose they’d rather have an empty storefront.

    • An empty storefront offers a certain amount of hope for the future — and we’re plenty used to them in Mt. Pleasant. A Subway means terrible food and litter forever — it is the utter absence of hope. I am resigned, but there is surely no reason to be pleased.

      • So open your own restaurant or encourage someone else to do so. It’s a pretty simple solution to everyone’s complaints. Ahhhh, but it’s not so simple, is it?

        • I hereby encourage someone else to open a better restaurant. Actually, that was very simple.
          Did it work?

        • Agreed. I can’t stand people who hate on a small biz owner opening in their ‘hood simply because it’s not a shiny, yuppie, small plates joint. Mt. Pleasant has plenty of dead retail space; they should be thankful for pretty much ANY investment that livens up a street corner. Any Mt. Pleasant people complaining can take their savings and open a cafe, an outpost of Barcelona (yup – it’s a franchise), an OMGZ-FRESH-BREAD! shop, or another “concept.”
          Seriously, folks? There are way worse things than Subway. Like McDonald’s. Burger King. KFC. Taco Bell. A place that uses copious amounts of cooking oil (that shit always gets dumped behind the restaurant and smells awful). A pawn shop. A drug treatment clinic. Shall I go on?

          • It’s asinine. These franchises are owned by individuals, not Subway, and they provide jobs and cheap meals for people in the neighborhood who can’t afford the $15 small plates that someone with a video projector probably years for. I’m so glad that all the other injustices in DC have finally been righted, so we can focus our energy on Subway.

          • It hilarious that there is apparently nothing (NOTHING!!1!!!!1!) in between a Subway and $15 small plates. I would prefer something better than a Subway, but I also appreciate a Subway more than a vacant building. Is that such a villainous opinion to have?

          • They should just replace all the vacant storefronts with diners. Then everyone would be happy.

      • Is it really that serious? It’s just a Subway. It’s not Hip-Hop Fish and Chicken…

        • SouthwestDC

          I lived and worked near Barracks Row for years before I realized there was a Subway there. There’s also one around the corner from my current office that I didn’t notice until someone pointed it out. They have a tendency to blend inoffensively into the background.

          • Anonynon

            you can smell their fake bread…its actually a pretty offensive odor. I had to walk by one in Van Ness to get to metro. They also just churn out complete crap….thats really why i don’t like them. When i was in 3rd grade i realized they microwaved their meat for a steak and cheese. That was the last time i went there for a sub.

          • LANY don’t all fast food places churn out crap?

          • “fake bread”? Can someone enlighten me?

          • “Fake Bread” = Opposite of artisanal, locally-sourced, organic, gluten-free, small-plate, bougie bread. 🙂

        • Is Hip-Hop Fish and Chicken a possibility? I’d take that over a Subway 10 times out of 10.

        • Hip Hop Chicken!?!?? Yummy. 🙂

      • “A Subway means terrible food and litter forever — it is the utter absence of hope.”

        Get a grip, for fuck’s sake. Do you not understand how idiotic you sound? Perhaps they could open a self-awareness store in Mount Pleasant.

  • Who has this much time on their hands? I can think of so many other causes that are worth fighting. The picture and the hashtag really makes them look immature.

  • I love this!

  • Anonynon

    I have always hated subway with a burning passion…this makes me happy

  • I’m not sure what the problem is. Don’t like Subway? Don’t go there, then.

    Also, the location is probably being set up by a franchisee–you know, a small business owned by someone in the community. I thought people ate that up around here.

    • Exactly, this is likely a franchisee. Which means the “protesters” are hating on a small business owner. Seems reasonable.

      • Actually, the small business franchisee owner is becoming more of a thing of the past. Most franchises are owned by “multi-unit operators” ie businesses that own franchises. Many of them are publicly traded. Most big companies don’t like to sell to individuals because they tend to fail and the parent company doesn’t want to see that happen.

        • Can you provide a source to back that up? Or evidence that it’s the case with this particular Subway?

          • Here is a WSJ article from a few years ago:


            Do some googling on “the rise of multi-unit franchisees” and you’ll see lots of hits.

            IIRC there is a guy who owns all the Burger Kings in Texas or Florida, something like that. It also happens a lot with car dealerships.

            No idea if this is the case for the Mt Pleasant subway, but certainly Colhi makes a valid point about the trend in franchising in America in general.

  • I thought it was a commercial for Subway + Frostys.

    • Same here – it looks like a “coming soon!” advertisement.
      Or, eat your frozen yogurt first then your Subway sub.
      I would have preferred something different, but I’m glad that a new business is opening in Mt Pleasant.

    • I know, right?! I didn’t see that as a steaming coily, I was soft serve ice cream… mmmm ice cream.

  • OMGGGG NIMBYS ARE IN MOUNT PLEASANT TOO!!! all of you who had NO idea where Spring Valley was, but hated all the “rich” “NIMBYS” that live there, I can’t wait to hear your opinion on this!

    • Yeah, this isn’t exactly NIMBYism. The Subway is under construction. I think the difference here is that we may grumble on Twitter about chains going into our eclectic little neighborhood, but I don’t see anyone getting so upset that they’re actually planning an “emergency neighborhood meeting” to block the Subway. I fully support the #subwayeatshit campaign, but I also recognize that using a vacant storefront is progress, regardless of what I may think of the tenant. I would guess my attitude is probably fairly common among Mt. P residents?

      • Haha not yet. Yes, this is NIMBYism. Yes, you can be a NIMBY even if you’re not living in a 1.5 million $ home. Haha, in 15 years when your investment property has appreciated after some of those “eclectic” store fronts are turned into the next Wagshals, you’ll be calling for emergency meetings too. For now, you’re actually okay with someone immaturely projecting a pile of crap for display in your own neighborhood. you’re sending the same message. I’m still not sure why people who read this blog believe “rich” people shouldn’t get a Say in the direction of their own neighborhood. If I paid that much for my home and taxes, you better believe I’d have a vested interest in the direction of the neighborhood. You will feel the same way when you get there.

        • Your holier than thou attitude is the reason I chose to buy in Mt. Pleasant rather than an area like Dupont or Georgetown. My neighborhood has character and my house value is still increasing. It’s a projection, it’s not spray paint or a billboard and it’s not doing anything other than making a temporary point about a foregone conclusion. More importantly, this is a community not just a personal investment and everyone gets a say, even if they haven’t “gotten” where you think they should be going. And this isn’t NIMBYism, it’s ineffective whining. But it’s funny.

        • yeah. because the *real* problem with this country is that rich people never get to have a say in how things are run.

          (and no, i’m not against the place opening up. but your taxes don’t make your interest more ‘vested’ than anyone else’s.)

          • Uh. My comment is with respect to all the people who post on here that rich people who want a say are just NIMBYs. You better believe if I paid that money and those taxes to live in a neighborhood like Spring Valley my opinion on my neighborhood should be more important than some close-minded-ideal-driven-egocentric random from some other part of the city. That’s the way neighborhoods work.

          • uh. that’s not at all the way neighborhoods work. your neighborhood isn’t a sovereign country, so yes, you do have to share it, and yes, other people are allowed to have an opinion, and no, yours isn’t more important, no matter where you live or how much your tax bill is. rich people who think that their opinion is worth more than anyone else’s ARE nimby’s, whether for or against whatever is being proposed.

  • One smells like bake bread whenever you spend 5 mins in a Subway restaurant. Nasty

  • A Subway is better than a shuttered, vacant storefront, but my hangup with it is that there’s already a Subway at 14th and Park. Why do we need another one so close?

    • Where this one is located compared to the one on 14th…it’s about what…4 blocks? I think they’re far enough apart that it shouldn’t affect either.

    • I’m sure the folks opening the store in Mt Pleasant knew there is another Subway a few blocks away, and took that into consideration when they chose to open up in Mt P.
      Do we “need” another Subway so close? Do we need another coffee shop opening on Park Rd when there is another three or four around the corner? I guess the answer is yes

      • I’m not sure. On U Street they opened 3 within 6 blocks of each other – 16th, 14th, and 12th. The first on 16th closed soon after the other one opened on 14th.

        They’re not as well thought out as you’d think, but in this case there’s enough distance. Mount Pleasant is another world from Columbia Heights, believe it or not.

  • Can you imagine…a low cost restaurant moves into a neighbourhood with many working class families, must be a bad thing. Instead we would much prefer a business that caters to wealthy, young professionals and Instagrammers. Agreed, Subway is not the greatest food to ever grace a plate but is it really a travesty for Mt. Pleasant? There is literally a 7-11 one block over.

    • There is also literally a Subway 3 blocks over (14th and Park). There are plenty of low-cost options on Mt. P and it would have been nice for something a tiny bit more interesting than another Subway to go in that could cater to all income types.

    • The issue is that the people protesting the Subway probably have very little interaction with the working class families and individuals that live in the neighborhood. It’s completely separate bubbles – highly educated homeowners buying $900K houses vs. young, educated, upwardly mobile people living in group houses vs. working class people stuffed into rent-controlled apartment buildings. For the working class, a Subway sandwich is a treat. Which probably is a mind-blowing realization for people living on Ingleside Terrace.

      • Yeah and as someone pointed out, the franchisees are probably small business owners, likely immigrant families themselves based on what I’ve seen.

      • So you’re saying getting rid of rent control would solve the problem?

      • Haha, I love how everyone is transforming this into a class war. I’m on the extreme low end of the working class and Subway definitely isn’t a treat for me, but I do see well-dressed patrons of obvious means at other Subway locations across the city. It comes down to a matter of personal taste, really. However, one of the reasons why I enjoy Mt. P is precisely because I see a lot of interaction on Mt. P street between different economic classes- I don’t see much evidence of the bubbles you refer to.

      • BS. The food is shit, full of chemicals, and largely unhealthy. Stop telling us what a “treat” a terrible Subway sandwich is for those poor, downtrodden El Savadorians who just don’t know any better. As if there already isn’t a ton of low cost food options in neighborhood. Subway is hardly the savior of the hungry. And the working class dont appreciate your patronage.

      • no, I know the guy who did it. He’s kind of poor

    • Yes, sharpsharp! YESSSSSSS!!!

    • Any new fast-food outlet is a travesty, really, from a public health perspective at least.

    • Any new fast-food outlet is a travesty, really, from a public health perspective at least.

  • samanda_bynes

    Steven sat down at his desk – he’d never seemed so frazzled. As he collapsed onto his IKEA burgsturm office chair in his northwest DC office, he ran his hands through his hair and removed his glasses. As he was rubbing the bridge of his nose there was a knock at his door.

    “Come in, Brad”.

    Brad meekly walked into the office holding a manila folder filled with neon yellow papers. Steven knew that it was serious, but to use the trademark nauseating yellow of the Subway logo meant one thing and one thing only; an emergency. Not just any emergency, but one requiring the utmost care.

    “I know you said you wanted me to keep the bad news away from you but this one came from way up”. Brad spoke meekly, but with a sense of command that showed he obviously liked giving bad news to his boss – it was really his only power as the quarterly intern.

    Steven put his glasses back on and ruffled the stack, “this came from corporate”?

    “Higher”, Brad said slowly.

    Steven looked up with an air of caution and fear, and as he looked directly into his intern’s eyes he knew exactly what the young, freshly bearded kid meant.

    “Jared”, Steven whispered as he picked up the phone and waved Brad away.

    The phone rang once before Steven was greeted with a terse, commanding, and oddly aggressive voice;”Eat shit?”

    “I’m…sorry..?” Steven stuttered. He was caught off guard by both the speed of which the phone was picked up, and the odd greeting.

    “Eat. Shit.” the voice said. Now, more slowly and less of a question. It was Jared. The number on the emergency neon yellow papers led straight to him. “Now, when I say Subway: Eat Fresh. What does that mean to you.” He didn’t bother with introductions – he never did. Jared was a general in that regard – direct and commanding without having to use formalities or volume.

    “It means that I can get a healthy, custom made, on the spot sandwich with a side of chips and a drink (maybe a refreshing Coca-Cola™) for a low, and everyday affordable price.” Steven felt a small bead of sweat form on his brow. “It means that you, the average person, are now free from the grease and grime of burgers and fries”, the bead made its way down his face, and was hanging precariously onto the left side of his angular chin.

    “Exactly Steven. Look at you, I knew I could put my trust in you.” Jared’s voice was soothing now, and growing softer. “Now, what does the phrase, ‘eat shit’ mean to you?”

    “I”m…not sure…sir”, Steven found that he now had a horrible headache, and the sweat was pouring out even faster.

    “It means”, Jared started slowly, before erupting into a volcanic amount of rage, manifested in volume and power in his voice: “IT MEANS, THAT THERE’S A F*CKING GUY OUT THERE WHO THINKS WE’RE A JOKE – WHO HATES OUR BRAND – AND HE’S IN YOUR GODDAMN WARD. GO. OUT. THERE. FIX THE GODDAMN THING AND DON’T YOU THINK YOU THINK FOR A SECOND I’M NOT WATCHING ALL YOU F*CKERS.”

    Steven’s headache grew worse, a searing white noise was beginning to ring in his ears. He knew what this meant.

    “Yes sir, I’m on it now”. The pain grew and grew until Steven started to see red.

    “P-p-please”, he stuttered, “release me.”

    He heard Jared chuckle softly before the pain suddenly stopped.

    “Now”, Jared spoke calmly and warmly as if the explosion didn’t just happen, “go out there, and be the great guy I know you can be, remember, I’m your inspiration!”

    “You’re my inspiration”, Steven said, weakly, but meaningfully, “Eat Fresh, and Hail Subway”

    “Eat Fresh and Hail Subway” – Jared hung up, and Steven knew he would be in for the fight of his life.

  • This is literally the dumbest thing in the world.

  • the level of delusion among MtP and Columbia Heights residents never ceases to amaze me.

  • Hate on Subway all you want – five half-a-millimeter-thick slices of meat on 12 inches of an $8 sandwich? You’re probably right to complain. However, as much as you may hate those sandwiches, you have to admit, those chocolate chip cookies are AMAZING. So, that makes Subway okay.

  • “Bad chicken!! Mess you up!!”

  • jim_ed

    How is everyone going to feel when we find out this was nothing but a juvenile prank pulled off by those jerks over at Blimpie?

    • The campaign has really taken off — there are seven tweets about it already! Maybe by the end of the day there will be 10!!

    • I’m curious to know how this is being projected. Does one of the protestors live across the street? Is it legal to project whatever you want onto adjacent properties as long as you supply the power and the equipment is on your property?

  • I love all the class warriors out there standing up for their underprivileged brethren — their right to employed at minimum wage without health care by an absentee shop-owner, their right to eat unhealthy, unfortunately flavored food designed in a corporate lab somewhere in New Jersey and sold to them by a relentless nine-figure advertising campaign. But, speaking as a long-time inhabitant of the Pleasant Mountain, one who wanders happily by the intoxicated corner-dwellers and the beer bottle-top checker players to shop in the bodegas and pupuserias , I am hard pressed to feel even the slightest guilt or being disappointed at the arrival of loathsome chain restaurant, that might incidentally feed neighbors who might otherwise have to walk two blocks for their fast food fix. If I wanted to live in a ;ow-end strip mall, I’d move to Herndon. Try again.

    • justinbc

      My favorite is their turkey-based ham product.

    • You’d want to move to the Herndon of 1994? Herndon now is primarily South Asian, Korean, Vietnamese. It’s MUCH more racially and ethnically diverse that Mt. Pleasant. I worked there for years- the quality of the ethnic food in Herndon beats ANYTHING available on Mt Pleasant St.

  • Whoever did this needs has too much time on their hands and needs to focus their rage on an issue that actually matters

    • PDleftMtP

      This. Or, if you really want to do something for Mt Pleasant Street, do something other than trying to keep vacant buildings vacant in the hopes that, right after the Great Pumpkin appears on Halloween, He will manifest as an organic fair trade kombucha co-op to fill the space. Go help Mt Pleasant Main Street or something – they could use it.

      Mt Pleasant Street has been hanging on by its fingernails for years, and all many of my fixie-riding neighbors seem capable of is criticizing the choice of nail polish – and then wondering why it is that better businesses don’t want to relocate to a run-down strip (even if they don’t realize that this is a neighborhood that can and will protest a freaking library).

    • Hmmmm. Obesity, poor nutrition and associated diseases are part of a national epidemic involving scores of premature deaths. Nope, doesn’t matter at all.

      • Please. First, the existing neighborhood dining options are no healthier, and I don’t see projections on Burrito Fast. Second, this is pure NIMBY, not a public awareness nutrition campaign.

      • Please. First, most of the other restaurants around there are no healthier (give me the nutritional analysis on a cheese pupusa), and second, this is pure NIMBY, not a public health awareness campaign.

  • At least it’s not a McDonald’s.

  • I don’t know what the big fuss is about…word on the street is this is basically a pop-up subway, in a few years the bestworld lease is up and the owners are planning a huge condo project for this block

  • Healthier option than me picking up MSG laced carryout food

  • Why are these people protesting a Subway coming to their neighborhood? Are they afraid it will bring the riff raff?

  • Subway has got to be disappointing to those MtPleasanteers who were hoping for more San Francisco and less Oakland, but it’s all a matter of perspective. I don’t particularly love Subway’s food, nor the bad bread smell, but by god, it’s healthier than Popeye’s, and if they moved into my neighborhood I’d take it as a sign that some bright child at Subway HQ with a business degree and a market research report saw brighter days in my area’s future.

    • I counted 19 restaurants between Park and Argonne: 5 Asian, 1 Italian/Greek, 2 pizza joints, and 11 Latin American. Most of these are fairly inexpensive and “working class”, and offer carry-out. I don’t think that residents are hoping for SF, just some better options.

  • Subway might not be the your favorite new neighbor, but this is someone’s money and hard work. The process of opening a business already comes with enough difficulty. A new lighted space along the sidewalk, and a place to grab a sandwich in a pinch. If the shop is wrong for the neighborhood, it will give way to something else, and those additional taxes help support small business in the area.

  • I’ve heard this thing about Bestworld’s lease ending, and the possibility of the block being redeveloped from a few people. Does anyone know more specifics?

  • Before we opened in Adams Morgan, we were trying to open Pop’s SeaBar at this very location. In fact, we had a singed LOI and were reviewing Lease details when the landlord and broker pulled out of the deal last minute, with little to no explanation.

    Sorry to say, but it was clear the property owner wanted to sell to a national chain rather than support small, neighborhood business. We would have loved to be a part of the Mt. Pleasant community, as both myself and business partner are former residents of Mt. Pleasant.


    • This post kills me, as we would have loved to have a place like Pop’s in the neighborhood.

    • THIS is the real reason there are no better retail options along the strip. Simple greed on the part of the owners. Not NIMBYism or people projecting poop on a wall…

    • Depressing to read this. It’s this kind of crap that is driving me to move somewhere else. Day after day we read about new, independent businesses opening in other D.C. neighborhoods. Meanwhile in Mt P, we get a fricking Subway because some a-hole landlord pulled the rug out from a place that would have really added to the neighborhood. Oh and our ANC is criminally bad….just saying.

    • Sorry that it didn’t work out for the seafood place, but is it really wrong to criticize a landlord for renting/leasing to a chain? S/he wants the rent paid on time and just may not have had the confidence in the local place.
      Note: I’d MUCH rather Pop’s seafood was coming soon, not the chocolate froyo and subway subs. But I’m not the landlord

  • Embracing diversity also means excepting that we all have different tastes and should not protest when a business that caters to the typical American tries to open shop. Many people like predictability in their food and maybe don’t desire anything more exotic that banana peppers or olive rings on their sandwich? There are other places to get less ordinary stuff on Mt.P. Street. I for one would prefer to see the storefront occupied with a long-term tenant. If people are complaining about the type of sandwiches that Subway offers go right up the street to Each Peach and get a hand crafted gourmet sandwich there. I wonder if there will be the same sort of protest if the Craft Kombucha folks hit their funding target and try to locate at the Heller’s location?

  • Anyone have an idea who it is that makes these projections?

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