Monday, August 30, 2010

Poll Results: Overwhelming Support for Giant Supermarket

The results are in and by an overwhelming margin people support Giant's new supermarket and residential/shopping complex at Wisconsin Avenue and Newark Street, NW.

The vote was 89 percent against the lawsuit to block the Giant; 10 percent for the lawsuit.  It doesn't get much clearer than that.  The poll asked, "Do you support or oppose the lawsuit to block the Giant supermarket and residential/shopping complex at Wisconsin and Newark?"

All Life Is Local's poll results are very close to the verdict of a similar poll on the Cleveland Park Listserv conducted in February 2009, in which 93 percent of the people responding said that they support the new development.

To recap the saga of the Giant:  For over 10 years, there's been a battle raging in the Cleveland Park neighborhood of Washington, DC over whether or not a new, modern supermarket should replace the 1950's style Giant supermarket.  The supermarket would be accompanied by a residential/shopping complex.  On the pro-supermarket side are those neighbors who want a well-stocked food store.  On the anti-side are those neighbors who feel that Cleveland Park is a village in a city, and small is better.  A large supermarket would change the feel and character of the neighborhood, they believe.

After lengthy hearings, the Giant's plans were approved by the DC Zoning Commission in June 2009.

How unreasonable is it to want a good supermarket in walking distance of where one lives?  Not unreasonable at all -- at least it shouldn't be.  And yet, that's exactly what the Giant's opponents want to deny their neighbors.

The anti-Giant side hopes that their lawsuit will scare away the Giant, or delay things enough so that the planned, expanded Giant supermarket just never gets built.  But it looks like this time around Cleveland Park will get a nice, modern supermarket and attractive, vibrant residential/shopping complex.


  1. Ah, but there was nothing at all scientific about the administration of either of these polls, so they really don't "prove" anything. I mean, we do know that lots of non-neighbors subscribe to the listserv, so we don't even know how many respondents actually live in Cleveland Park or the immediate neighborhood. Also wonder how many of these "yes" votes would turn to "no" votes -- and sharing in a similar lawsuit -- if the respondents lived in the immediate vicinity? It would have been helpful to have an "I don't really care" answer possibility, too.

    Karen Davis (for herself only)

  2. I have yet to see either the anti-Giant people or the CPCA do a survey of neighbor's view of the Giant project. Why haven't they? Because the know that only a tiny minority are opposed to the Giant's plans for a modern supermarket and shopping complex.

  3. I don't see what's wrong with letting the broad community weigh in -- not just those who live in the shadow of the store. A supermarket serves a wide area, and right now people in Cleveland Park need to drive to another neighborhood for a decent grocery store. Personally, I can't see why even the closest neighbors want to have a crumbling shabby virtually unusable store there. As to whether a web poll is the right way to gauge community sentiments -- well, that's what the ANC is for, and the ANC was on the whole very supportive. Also, we had land use experts (the Zoning Commission) who heard the case for MONTHS and then voted unanimously to let the Giant build the plan. Now a handful of people who just won't quit are going to court to try to stop the Giant. I'm sure they will ultimately lose, but in the meantime, nothing gets built and it's bad for the whole neighborhood.

  4. I suggest that the persons who are "anti-big" be made counter-defendants. They are costing the property owners a fortune and they are costing the rest of us extra gas money as we go to a better stocked grocery/pharmacy. Please tell me that the newest design has lots of underground, handicapped parking close to the store's door. I have gotten old during the affray.