A rendering of the 56,000-square-foot Giant Food grocery store as envisioned for Cathedral Commons. In the left corner is Wisconsin Avenue. The road extending to the right is Newark Street. (Courtesy of Bozzuto Group)

Giant began discussing plans to replace the out-of-date, 18,500-square-foot Giant almost a decade ago, but questions about what the company ought to build in its place grew to monstrous proportions in the Cleveland Park neighborhood. Eventually, the debate reached the point that some neighbors on opposing sides of the issue ceased speaking to one another.

The much-disputed store will close once and for all Thursday, April 12 at 6 p.m., according to Giant Food. Eventually, it will be replaced with a 56,000-square-foot new Giant that will anchor a mixed-use project called Cathedral Commons that will also bring 137 apartments, more than 500 parking spaces and nearly 70,000 square feet of additional shops and restaurants.

The new store won’t open until 2014, however. In the meantime, for Cleveland Park residents who need their fix of Giant groceries, the company said it will run a free shuttle bus to the Giant store in Van Ness, at 4303 Connecticut Ave. NW. The shuttle will pick up shoppers at noon on Sundays, with a return time of 2 p.m. It will also do pick-ups Tuesdays and Thursdays at 9:45 a.m., returning at 11:45 a.m.

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