55 Comment

  • This will be great for local businesses.

  • This is just terrible. There is already a Petco unleashed in Noma- and now they are building a PetCo in the Hecths development. That is sure to do in Mettro Mutts.

    • Sink or swim brah, if they can’t compete it is time for them to go, not time for people to pressure the govt to prevent competition. Not personal unless you want to make it personal.

  • Invasion of the chain stores.

  • The invasion of Petco Unleashed is starting to get really obnoxious.

    • Seriously. I went in the one in NoMa for the first time a few weeks ago, never realized how overpriced EVERYTHING is there compared to a normal Petco or Petsmart. So annoying.

  • Good, maybe those zombies that stare at their laptops for hours will move out of Maketto, and I can get a table for my really great coffee and croissant.

    • justinbc

      You know some people work on laptops, right? I’m doing it right now!

      • Yes- but don’t you think it’s rude or inconsiderate to occupy a restaurant’s seating for hours- having only purchased a single cup of coffee?

        • phl2dc

          There was an article a couple years ago about how some coffee shops, including Starbucks, were starting to limit or ban the use of laptops.

        • justinbc

          I personally never do it, I have my own wifi at home… But as long as there’s nobody waiting for a seat then I don’t think it’s a problem. If there is an actual shortage of seating and you’re doing nothing to provide value to the business then you’re definitely being a nuisance.

  • This is ridiculous. Putting corporate brands on H St NE is going to change the dynamics of the street. Not only is it going to drive up rent prices around the Atlas District and drive out long-time residents, it’s going to devalue the uniqueness of H St. NE and ruin its character.

    • IIRC, wasn’t that the goal when they start redeveloping H street? Only allowing local businesses to open rather than large corporations? What changed since then?

      • “What changed since then?” – Nothing, really. I’m pretty sure that talk of “local business” was just that – talk (similar to just about everything that comes out of Bowser’s mouth). As far as I’m aware, there weren’t any laws passed to ban corporate business from having a presence on H street. Everything else is pretty basic economics in action.

      • justinbc

        According to who? Without regulation there’s nothing to keep any given landlord from selling his space to the highest bidder. Big apartment / condo complexes are coming, those people typically want standard, defined, homogeneous things, whether you or I or anyone of them individually wants them. There’s a reason that Subway has 30,000 locations, even though nobody you talk to seems to actually like the product.

    • Keep H Street slummy!

  • canadianexile

    While I’m not happy about the pet store, given that in a year there will be about 900-1200 new residents on that block, there is going to be considerable demand for coffee, and Maketto and Bullfrog already have long lines on the weekend. The neighborhood is going to need more coffee shops and while I would prefer Dolcezza or something similar I think the Starbucks is a necessary evil.

    • justinbc

      It’s also about 7 blocks from Maketto. This will likely impact Sidamo and what used to be Batter, Bowl, Bakery more. Sidamo makes great coffee though, so anyone actually interested in taste will likely still support them.

      • Isn’t there also supposed to be a Wydown coffee bar *directly* across the street from this Starbucks in the Apollo/Whole Foods building?

      • i absolutely love sidamo, but both sidamo and batter bowl have a serious service problem. even if there’s only one other person in line, it takes about 15 minutes just to get a cup of coffee.

        • The people at Sidamo are always so sweet and make me happy though.

          Batter Bowl not so much. They also recently downgraded their appearance and have a new tacky name and logo. I don’t get it.

    • Why do people buy take-away coffee in stores? I totally don’t understand this at all. You can make it at home for 50 cents a cup. And that is including the price of buying a machine, a travel cup, bag of coffee etc.

  • anonymouse_dianne

    I shop at the Petco Unleashed and Georgetown and the prices are no different than regular Petco. They do carry more high end products (including vegetarian dog food!) and that’s where I buy the wet cat food my fussy Savannah prefers. They are a lot cheaper than the mom and pop pet store I also frequent but they have started to stock some of the lower priced gourmet foods as well. Petco and Pet Smart both have charitable wings that do a lot of good for rescues.

    • What?! Vegetarian dog food? Please tell me that’s an elaborate practical joke!

      • IIRC, dogs — unlike cats — are not obligate carnivores and can live on a vegetarian diet.
        (Though my impression has been that dog foods with a higher proportion of meat and smaller proportion of other stuff are considered “better” than ones with lots of grain, soy, etc.)

      • I s

        • Grrr. So many computer problems today. As I was saying, I suppose dogs are not obligate carnivores, but surely they’re omnivores who would never choose an entirely vegetarian diet for themselves, if they were in the wild. It seems like a bizarre, and almost cruel, whim that a human would impose such a diet on their dog, unless there was a very specific medical reason for doing so.

          • anonymouse_dianne

            When I was an adoption counselor at WARL I had an Indian family tell me they were vegetarian for religious reasons, but would be happy to feed the dog meat. I suppose if you were vegan for religious reasons a commercial veggie dog food would be better than feeding scraps. Cats go blind on a vegetarian diet – they need taurine which is only found in organ meats.

          • Yes, anonymouse_dianne – my vegan friends happily feed their cats meat.

          • My dogs actually do prefer vegetables and grains to meat most of the time. But they’re weird.

  • I’d be curious to hear if the local ANC(s) made any efforts at all to develop a community benefits agreement with the developers of these mega-projects that required these huge buildings to set aside some portion of the retail spaces for small, independent operations at pre-negotiated below-market rents, or if they even tried to establish a corporate non-compete requirement that stated that only chain stores that were not direct competition for local business within a specific radius (I know Metro Mutts and Sidamo are both two blocks away) were eligible for leases for the next 15 or 20 years.
    Lots of these big buildings on H Street were PUDs or sought other zoning relief, which opened the door for such negotiations. If so, I wonder why they didn’t work. If not, talk about a lost opportunity!

  • I dunno why people are worried that this will hurt existing coffeeshops. There are like ten coffeeshops on and within a block of 14th St. NW between P and U, including two Starbuckses, and they’re all doing just fine. We lost some along the way (Mid-City Cafe and Point Chaud, at least), but the fact that so many survived/opened just shows that there were other factors there.
    So, yeah, this will put pressure on Sidamo to be better, and they might close down, but I’m not sure I like the idea of saving a meh business because of chain animosity.

    • That comment went in a diff direction than when I started it. I should say that I know why people are worried, but think they should consider the ramifications of what they’re advocating.

  • How did people not see this coming? If no want the CVS/Starbucks supreme combo every five blocks in this city, then support local business and have your friends do the same!

  • Argggg this is just what I was afraid of. I don’t want a damn Starbucks, I love going to Sidamo and Uni Bistro (formerly Batter Bowl) and I sure as hell don’t want a Petco. We have a Metro Mutts literally a block away.

    These are not filling needs for this area. So sad right now. I really don’t want my neighborhood corporatized.

    • Yep, same here, though as soon as Whole Foods announced its intentions it was pretty clearly down hill from there. Won’t be long now before it’s just another bland street full of Chipotles, interns, and Arlington bros.

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