Wal-Mart’s proposed store on East Capitol Street, adjacent to the Capitol Heights Metro station, has many residents excited for its food and other products, but others are concerned about its design, which looks a lot like a school and doesn’t engage the street.
This site, alone among the four Wal-Mart proposals, is public land. The independent D.C. Housing Authority owns the property. It has an interest in maximizing its profit to be able to create as much affordable housing as possible, but it also has a duty to help the neighborhood become better, to fulfill its mission of “enhancing the quality of life in the District of Columbia.”
Why is it important to engage the street, anyway? This site is right around a Metro station, making it an ideal spot for a growing commercial district to serve the neighborhood’s retail needs. A Wal-Mart provides a lot of goods, but people also need some specialty goods and a wide range of services.
[Continue reading David Alpert’s post at Greater Greater Washington.]
David Alpert is founder and editor of Greater Greater Washington. The Local Blog Network is a group of bloggers from around the D.C. region who have agreed to make regular contributions to All Opinions Are Local.