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  • As I’ll soon be moving from U Street to Mt. Vernon Triangle, I’d love to see more great new places at the Convention Center and 7th and 9th Street. Let’s do this retailers and restauranteurs!!

  • I feel like these spaces are retail orphans with a generic strip mall feel that will probably continue to struggle. They’ll never have the high-end cache of a City Center, the tourists are drawn to Chinatown, and they’ll never be as cool as either the tucked-in neighborhood places just north or the new retail in new buildings blowing up from roughly O St to Florida.

    • I disagree with the sentiment ‘retail orphans’. True they are not like City Center or neighborhood places, but they are clean open vanilla spaces in a nice location with great street frontage and could get some nice mid-range tenants. Small retail would be great, if the rent could accommodate them. But the Streetsense street marketing is uninspired- S is for Shaw? What is that? S is for Streetsense, but hopefully they have a long vendor list at the ready.

    • It reminds me of disposable airport retail. When I lived nearby, I never really considered going to any of the convention center retail unless i was stuck IN the convention center.

  • Shame about the projects on the other side of the convention center. Average income…. negative?

  • I am in the Sproc camp. These spaces are flat out *ugly*. There are so many quasi-vacant first floor spaces in the beautiful walkups along 9th street that I cannot imagine someone shelling out for a Falls Church strip-mall. When they built the convention center they cheaped out on design, and now they are paying for their costly mistake. The lesson? Do it right the first time – even if it costs a little extra money.

    • IIRC, the convention center was forced to build retail against their wishes by the DC government. They never wanted to be a landlord and manage retail property.
      The nicest thing that will ever go into here is a Panera Bread or a Chipotle. The streetscape is just so depressing and imposing.

    • The convention center already cost $853 million as it was so hard to believe a lack of money was the problem. Whole thing seems like a boondoggle to me, with this behemoth appearing to deaden the area around it.

  • If they’d tear down the projects on 7th street, this whole neighborhood would take off and those places would be snapped up in a heartbeat. As it stands, a lot of tourists will not even venture into PH areas, and this area is primarily close to hotels. Expect these storefronts to be vacant/cheap until that happens.

    • The projects on 7th Street are NOT what is holding this retail space back. It’s the management of Events DC and their lack of interest in supporting decent retail. See as counter-examples: Passenger (old), Wagtime, Longview Gallery, Corduroy, Baby Wale, Lost and Found, Reformation Fitness, etc. etc. etc.

      • A note about your “counter-examples”:
        The “Old Passenger” was several blocks south of the projects on 7th St, closer to Gallery place.
        Wagtime, Longview, Corduroy, Baby Wale, Lost and Found, and Reformation Fitness are all on 9th St, well separated from the projects. The new Passenger is also going to 9th St.
        Retail on the 7th St. side: Sbarro, Subway.
        That is all.

        • west_egg

          “Wagtime, Longview, Corduroy, Baby Wale, Lost and Found, and Reformation Fitness are all on 9th St, well separated from the projects.”
          So are 50% or so of the vacant retail spaces in the Convention Center.
          That is all.

  • Certainly don’t employ the people that were hired for Park Place above the Petworth metro. Most of those spaces have been vacant for over three years. Shameful. Where is the neighborhood leadership to get those spaces filled.

  • The problem is these spaces are on the north/west sides of the convention center – there are no major CC entrances on that side, so CC attendees don’t even see these storefronts. They’re incredibly bland spaces that no neighbor will want to visit either. It’s a bad combination.

  • What “projects” are folks even talking about? Aren’t the buildings around the convention center coops?

    • UHOP operates at least two public housing developments in that area. McCoullogh Gardens and another one whose name is escaping me.

  • Urban Athletic Club is awesome! Graham runs such an amazing business, super welcoming and friendly. Check it out! I may change my Georgetown location to here once it’s open.

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