- No longer coming to Columbia Heights.
Organic grocer Ellwood Thompson’s has at last admitted they have no intention of ever opening a store in the DCUSA complex in Columbia Heights.
In a press release sent to reporters Thursday, the Richmond-based retailer said it had "mutually agreed to terminate the lease" with landlord Grid Properties.
The move comes after several years of false starts. The company announced in the spring of 2009 that it lacked the funding to go forward with a build-out. As recently as November, owner Richard Hood continued to maintain that he had not given up on the project, despite comments made by Ward 1 D.C. Councilmember Jim Graham that Ellwood had defaulted on its lease.
UPDATE 4:05 p.m. "I'm not surprised," says Graham of the news. "I don't know what their internal issues are, but we all feel like we've gotten quit the bit of run around. The least they could have done was be honest with us back in November."
Graham also notes that the decision to bail on the project is "going to cost them." "They're into for about a million dollars. They're not going to get away scot free."
As for plans for the space going forward, Graham will encourage Grid to look for another organic grocer for the space. "Let's just look to the future," he says.
Full statement from Ellwood Thompson's below:
Further to the October 2008 signing of a lease agreement with New York based Grid Properties, for space within DCUSA in Washington, DC, the parties have mutually agreed to terminate the lease, after full analysis of the challenging economic circumstances.
In announcing the termination, Rick Hood, CEO of Ellwood Thompson’s Local Market, stated “We regret that Ellwood Thompson’s was not able to proceed with Grid Properties in order to occupy the space in Columbia Heights.