Detroit, butt of a thousand jokes for its dwindling population and association with 8 Mile, has just managed to out-yuppie some of D.C.’s yuppiest neighborhoods. By 2013, the Motor City will have a 20,000 square-foot Whole Foods, and Capitol Hill won’t.
Plenty of D.C. neighborhoods have pined for their own bastion of organic produce and quinoa—Columbia Heights lost its battle in 2007; Southeast D.C. this spring—but only Capitol Hill currently has an online petition dedicated to demanding a Whole Foods. The (perhaps redundantly named) Bring Whole Foods to H St NE on Capitol Hill has been drawing pleas, promises, whines, cajolings, praise, hyperbole, and demands from residents since October 2009.
Comments range from the apocalyptic (“WE NEED a Whole Foods and then business will explode upon opening!!!”) to the prophetic (“If you build it, they will come”) to the prematurely celebratory (“hurray!!!!!”) to the stern (“Quit slacking and put this in”).
But no amount of signatures seems to have launched so much as a rumor of a Whole Foods anywhere on the Hill. For now H Street residents will have to settle for the Giant that broke ground this month and dream of the sustainable swordfish on sale on P Street.