Housing Complex

Hecht’s Gets Its First Retailer: Mom’s Organic Market

This site's about to get a little bit yummier.

Douglas Development has big plans for the Hecht Company warehouse development it's bringing to New York Avenue NE in Ivy City, but up to now it's lacked one crucial component: tenants. Douglas is seeking tenants for the 500,000 square feet of office space it's putting into the old Art Deco warehouse, and the company's executives recently returned from a trip to a retail convention in Las Vegas to try to bring retailers to several large adjacent spaces on the site.

Now the development has its first tenant: Mom's Organic Market. The organic grocery store, with 10 locations in Maryland and Virginia, will open its first D.C. store at the Hecht's site.

Douglas' construction chief, Paul Millstein, says Douglas and Hecht's are in the process of completing the paperwork, but that it's essentially a done deal.

"Mom’s is coming to Hecht’s," Millstein says.

The addition of Mom's helps dispel two questions that have hung around the site: whether it would be able to attract any quality retailers at all, and whether that retail would include neighborhood-serving businesses—like grocery stores—rather than just big-box stores serving commuters from Maryland. But given that Ivy City's median household income is just $23,700, there's likely to be some concern about the extent to which an organic market can really cater to its immediate neighbors—and the extent to which those neighbors can support it.

The late Yes! Organic Market in Fairlawn is a potential warning story for the new Mom's, having closed down amid heavy losses before reopening as a conventional grocery store. But Mom's claims to have "the lowest price of any natural food store," and this store has a more accessible location than the Fairlawn Yes!, so it may be in a better position to do business.

  • Mosprott

    MOM's has done really well in Arlandria, and has a really diverse clientele. I think they'll do well on NY Ave.

  • VeggieTart

    I just wish there were a MOM's closer to me in AdMo.

  • born2sing65

    I would like to dispel the myth that the YES in Fairlawn was not accessible. I had no problems accessing that store. It may not have been the best location for organic food, though. I do plan to visit this new MOMs but my concern there is NY Ave which is always a clogged route. Hopefully this has been thought through.

  • Scott

    You will be able to access this MOMs from the neighborhoods and roads behind it. Yes Organic failed because they opened in an area where demand for organics is low- and their prices are high. They let the tail wag the dog by using the $900k the dc government offered them as the main impetus for choosing a location. In general, demand drives supply- not the other way around.

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  • Reality

    This is great and I hope it does well, but this location is practically inaccessible to anyone without a car (i.e. all us young people who would like to shop there)

  • Nesto

    Get a bike! Easy to get to Ivy City from numerous places by pedalling