Housing Complex

Discount Grocer Save-A-Lot to Take Old Brentwood Safeway Space

Folks who've been without groceries for nearly two years since Safeway closed its location across from the Metro station on Rhode Island Avenue will soon be able to shop again: Discount chain store Save-A-Lot has just signed a lease, and hopes to open by late spring or early summer.

The closest stores at the moment are in Hyattsville, Seat Pleasant, and Bladensburg, Maryland. But if you want to get a sense of what the store will sell, visit a Murry's on Georgia Avenue or H Street: The more familiar grocer is a licensee of Save-A-Lot (which is owned by Supervalu) and the new store will carry Murry's brand foods, a company representative said.

The Save-A-Lot will be 12,000 square feet, slightly smaller than the Safeway. The landlord B&R Associates, which has owned the massive property since at least 1984, is apparently looking for another big retailer to take up the rest of the space.

All of which might disappoint the those looking for some higher-end options in the neighborhood, right across from the new Rhode Island Row—or, better yet, someone to buy the property and put a new mixed-use development there. Looks like in the eyes of the landlord at least, the time isn't quite ripe.

UPDATE, 7:05 p.m. – A commenter points out that there is also a Giant Foods across Rhode Island Avenue. So no, it's not exactly a food desert.

  • http://urbanplacesandspaces.blogspot.com Richard Layman

    The Sav-a-lot in Hyattsville, which is run directly by Supervalu, not a licensee, is actually a decent store, for its limited selection. I go there from time to time if I am biking on Chillum Road, and I have been impressed by their customer service, considering the format.

  • on foot

    but will you be able to access the site on foot without having to walk up a steep driveway without sidewalks and/or through acres of parking?

  • Jen M.

    The closest grocery store is actually directly across the street. It is a very large Giant store. I'm not sure the new Sav-A-Lot is filling any serious gap in groceries.

  • Lydia DePillis

    @Jen M.

    Fair point.

  • David

    Are you unaware of the Giant that is literally on the other side of the metro from where this store will be? You can see a building that connects to the Giant in the picture you posted. The S in groceries is probably a tenth of a mile from it...

  • allison

    Though there is a grocery store across the street, it is probably a 10 minute walk, and one of the most unsafe walks in the city - across a 6 lane highway, under a narrow and dark underpass, and then up a large hill. This is impossible for seniors who live on the other side of the street. Distance is not always the only factor in what a food desert is, especially when adequate infrastructure or transportation does not exist. I'm surprised Lydia isn't aware of this.

  • http://distcurm.blogspot.com/ IMGoph

    gah....that's not brentwood, it's edgewood!

  • http://urbanplacesandspaces.blogspot.com Richard Layman

    it's not a food desert, but it is a matter of having an entry in a different price category (super discount) that isn't typically available in DC, with the exception of the new Aldi.

    It does say something about how chains see that part of the city though. Low to middle income, very price conscious.

  • Richard

    I have traveled all over the world, lived in large cities, and lived in Eastern Europe right after 1989, and the Brentwood Giant is the worst large supermarket I have ever shopped in. Period. So much so that I refuse to patronize it anymore. So food desert is not far off the mark.

  • ellie

    There's also a Harris Teeter that is not wildly inaccessible down by the NY Ave Metro stop. Not ideal, but more convenient if you're on foot or bike than the Giant in Brentwood.

    I'm glad for this, I suppose, since it's just a couple of blocks from home. I would have sort of liked to see the site sit vacant, though, and maybe force some more pedestrian friendly development. (I realize that is not just wishful, but nearly delusional thinking. Ah, well.)

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