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End of an Era – Domku Closing in Petworth

by Prince Of Petworth May 20, 2016 at 7:20 am 110 Comments

Domku
821 Upshur Street, NW

From a press release:

“Domku Closing After Over A Decade

Rising Real Estate Prices are Pushing Petworth Pioneer Out

After nearly 12 years in business Slavic-Scandanavian inspired Domku, located in Petworth, will close their doors at the end of June. A dramatic rent increase is forcing owner, Kera Carpenter to leave the neighborhood she helped create. Carpenter’s hand was forced by a 66% rent increase on the new lease.

Carpenter opened Domku in January 2005 as an effort to bring vitality to the Petworth neighborhood where she had bought a home a few years before. “When deciding where I wanted to open a business, making a contribution to my own neighborhood was a big factor. I knew it would be more difficult than going to an already establish area. I don’t regret that decision, but now now there is only so much I can do.”

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A favorite amongst neighbors, Domku became a community gathering place for the surrounding residents. Solo for sometime, the business is now surrounded by Petworth Citizen, Twisted Horn, Upshur Street Books, Willow and the recently closed Crane & Turtle.

Carpenter, a longtime supporter of local business was active in the improvement of this area by creating and implementing the Upshur Arts Fair, the on-going street beautification project and working with the city early on to include the 9th Street farmer’s market in the long-term development plans. Despite the increased vitality and the recent uptick in openings, Upshur Street still remains an emerging neighborhood. “It really saddens me to leave a neighborhood that has been such a part of my life for the past decade, but I know the cycle of business here. I know that I cannot sustain a business with that much rent, especially going into the slower summer season.”

To end in the way it began, Carpenter will host a neighborhood party on June 25 to celebrate 12 years with the community. Domku’s final brunch, featuring an “indoor yard sale” is slated for June 26. There are no plans to re-open in DC at this time.

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