Whole Foods is Dead (For Now), Long Live Trader Joe’s (in a Year or So)

trader joes popville
Former Holiday Inn at 35th and Wisconsin Ave, NW

Never a dull moment on the grocery store beat in Glover Park!! The potential Trader Joe’s at the former Holiday Inn as been confirmed(ish) – from the Glover Park listserv:

“I just heard that the deal is confirmed for Trader Joe’s to locate in the new development at the site of the old Holiday Inn. I’m not sure exactly about the timing but it’s likely sometime in late 2018 or early 2019, given that the ground isn’t even broken yet.”

whole-foods-glover-park
2323 Wisconsin Ave, NW

As for the Whole Foods closure, Whole Foods announced on the listserv:

“We announced today that we will be remodeling the Georgetown store to offer our customers a fresh, new shopping experience. Our goal is to exceed our customers’ expectations on every shopping trip, and making these investments in the store will help us to do that. We apologize for the inconvenience and welcome our customers to continue to shop with us at our nearby stores, including our brand new H Street location.”

28 Comment

  • Well that’s crappy of them with no warning. It’s like “Hey guys, we closed without warning you but go visit our location ALL THE WAY ACROSS TOWN or the closest one 20 minutes north by bus.”

    • I guess the alternative is, “We’re still open, but watch out for the giant rats.” I’ll take the bus ride.

    • maxwell smart

      Yeah… I think it’s funny they suggest coming to their new H Street store as an alternative, and not either Foggy Bottom or Tenleytown.

      • Yeah, what a strange press release. I get that they want to advertise the new store, but telling people that both the Tenleytown and Foggy Bottom outlets are just over 2 miles away would be much more useful.

        • Press releases are for PR. Google is for finding the closest store to you. Whole Foods loyalists probably already know about the Tenleytown and FB stores anyway.

          • They’re inept with PR (and given the health code violations, store management). You can’t rely on people who might shop there tho do their job. WF’s special aura has never been deserved and stuff like this just shines a brighetr light on that.

      • The sign out front does suggest going to Tenley Town store…love it when chains can’t get neighborhoods right.
        What also is funny from the listserv is everyone getting mad that when the store was open and had good news it was the Georgetown Whole Foods, but when the rats arrived it quickly was reported as the Glover Park Whole Foods.

    • I mean, they’ve been experiencing a significant rat problem. I think it’s more (1) we need to completely redo our basement/storage/etc., and (2) the best way to improve consumer confidence and draw back customers is with a completely new look. They closed because they were shut down AGAIN by the health department, so it’s not like they have much of an option. I live right by there, and I haven’t been exactly gung ho to go there recently, given their violations.

      • Have you actually seen rats or signs of them in or around the store?

        • I have not. Is that the metric we’re using now? A grocery store is shut down twice in quick succession by the health department for rodent infestation, and they close the store indefinitely to “remodel,” but if you haven’t actually seen the rats . . . what? It’s fake news?

          • Settle down, Beavis. I was just asking if Glover Park, who appears to be knowledgable of the situation, had personally seen any evidence of a “major rat infestation,” as it has been characterized. I don’t shop there often; I was simply curious as to whether the problem was so bad that it had become evident to customers.

        • Yes, have you ever been on the side or back of that building??? My dog goes ape-shit when I take her to the dog park because of the rats. But what difference does that make? Obviously, the health inspector did *inside the store*, twice, and significantly, and that doesn’t really make me jazzed to go back soon. And, clearly, the store felt like it experienced a pretty significant drop in revenue due to lack of consumer confidence, enough that they felt it necessary to take dramatic steps to attract clientele.

          • I agree, it all sounds disgusting and simply remodeling the store isn’t going to make the problem go away for good.

        • (cont’d)
          If you look at the index of inspections, several were based on complaints — presumably from customers — rather than being routine DOH inspections.
          .
          In recent health inspection records, for item #38 — “Insects, rodents, and animals not present” — this Whole Foods was marked as follows:
          – 2/10/17 – In compliance
          – 2/9/17 – Out of compliance
          – 2/8/17 – Out of compliance
          – 1/25/17 – Out of compliance
          .
          For the 2/9/17 inspection, the note on #38 reads: “Evidence of mice feces in the rear of the store at time of call.”
          .
          For 2/8/17, I’m not clear why they were marked as out of compliance rather than in compliance, because the note says: “No evidence of rodents was observed in any of the food prep areas at visit. All traps observed had no activity.”
          .
          For the 1/25/17 inspection: “Establishment had evidence of mice at visit, droppings were observed in the bakery area and back hallway. Manager is working with the pest control company to correct this issue as well as doing extensive cleaning in the establishment. (CORRECT VIOLATION WITHIN 3 CALENDAR DAYS)”

      • Mice. all the citations were for mice, not rats. Different creatures, different infestations.

        • ah

          Well that’s comforting – I’m happy not to have rat poop in my food, just the less offensive and less unhealthy mouse poop.

      • maxwell smart

        I’m sure the construction of the new apartments next door didn’t help

  • is the rat problem exclusive to whole foods, or does it impact any of the other businesses along that stretch? I’d be a little worried if I was Sprig and Sprout…

    • Glover Park had a huge rat problem neighborhood wide years ago. Thankfully the city came in and treated the neighborhood to kill the burrows that the rats live in. Its been some time, so I think we need another good rat abatement in GP to get them. I was walking into Starbucks on Hall and Wisconsin and there was a cat sized rat scurrying into the bushes.
      This isn’t a slam on the cleanliness of a store – its a waste storage problem. We humans generate a lot of waste and don’t secure it from rats/mice/vermin (impossible) so they flourish. We need to do a good mass culling every now and again.

    • The grossest thing I’ve ever seen at Whole Foods was the view from the parking garage, across the alley to the fire escape of the strip club. Broad daylight, guy getting, er, serviced. Ugh. Can’t un-see that.

      • He wasn’t from the Good Guys, it was that shady clientele from Max’s Ice Cream – that is the real reason why they closed.

  • every (EVERY) grocery store that has sliding doors during cool weather has rats. ALL OF THEM.

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