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Whole Foods Market Historic Walter Reed Store Finally Opens

New D.C. location features nostalgic feel that blends with architecture of old army hospital
Marian Zboraj, Progressive Grocer
Whole Foods Walter Reed
Whole Foods' Walter Reed store blends with the architecture of the old army hospital.

The long-awaited Whole Foods Market in Washington, D.C.’s historic Walter Reed development opened its doors on June 28.

The Parks at Walter Reed is a growing, vibrant community that consists of a 66-acre redevelopment of the former Walter Reed Army Medical Center, which was in operation from 1909 to 2011. At full buildout, The Parks will include 3.1 million square feet of mixed-use development and feature adaptive reuse of existing historic buildings, new construction, and an abundance of outdoor amenities through a network of parks and plazas.

[Read more: "Whole Foods Market Shares Winning Roster of Supplier All-Stars"]

Located at the corner of 12th Street NW and Dahlia Street NW, the new Whole Foods Historic Walter Reed store design embraces calming colors and reflective finishes, offering a nostalgic feel that blends with the architecture of the old army hospital.

Whole Foods Market Walter Reed
The produce department has offerings from local farms, including packaged salads from Bowery Farming and Gotham Greens.

The 47,000-square-foot store’s product assortment features more than 800 local items from across the greater D.C., Maryland and Virginia area, sourced with the help of Daniela D’Ambrosio, local forager for Whole Foods’ Mid-Atlantic region.

Features of the newest Washington, D.C., store include an array of certified organic, conventional and Sourced for Good produce; a specialty department dedicated to celebrating cheesemakers and artisan producers; a full-service seafood counter featuring either sustainable wild-caught or Responsibly Farmed offerings; a full-service meat counter with butchers available to cut steaks and poultry to order; an extensive curated selection of wines featuring international and vintage offerings sourced by Whole Foods’ expert wine team; and a selection of more than 250 craft beers.

Whole Foods Market Walter Reed
The specialty department is dedicated to celebrating cheesemakers and artisan producers.

The prepared food section includes sushi from Kikka Sushi, New York style pizza, and hot- food and salad bars featuring new offerings like grilled barbecue tofu with peach salsa, and bacon ranch tortellini.

“We’re thrilled to open our doors in the historic Walter Reed neighborhood,” noted Store Team Leader Donovan Morris. “I feel privileged to help bring Whole Foods Market’s knowledgeable team members, high quality standards for food and handpicked selection of local products to a neighborhood and community which has held a special place in my heart since childhood.”

Whole Foods Market Walter Reed
The bakery department provides made-in-house bread as well as everyday favorites.

During the opening-day ceremonies, the grocer said that local supplier Dress It Up Dressing is the newest recipient of the Local Producer Loan Program (LPLP), receiving a $150,000 low-interest loan from Whole Foods to grow its operations and support its recent expansion to all Whole Foods stores nationwide. Through LPLP, Whole Foods lends money to small-scale, local or emerging producers to help them grow their businesses. To date, the retailer has provided more than 360 loans, representing roughly $26 million in capital for recipients.

Additionally, Whole Foods has donated to D.C. Food Project, which provides food during the school day, weekends and holiday breaks to families in need; Real Food for Kids, which works to increase access to healthy foods in the D.C. school system; and Food Rescue D.C., an organization that recovers food from grocery stores and restaurants and distributes it to social service partners. Whole Foods also donates meals to food rescue and redistribution programs across the D.C. area by working with Food Donation Connection.

Whole Foods Market Walter Reed
The new Whole Foods store in D.C. features more than 800 local products.

The Whole Foods Market Historic Walter Reed store’s hours are 7 a.m. – 10 p.m. EST daily.

In other news, discount grocer Lidl US opened its Washington D.C., store in the Columbia Heights neighborhood on June 28. 

The first certified-organic national grocer, Austin, Texas-based Whole Foods has more than 500 stores in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom. The company is a wholly owned subsidiary of Seattle-based Amazon, which is No. 2 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2023 list of top food and consumables retailers in North America. PG also named Whole Foods and Amazon two of its Retailers of the CenturyNeckarsulm, Germany-based Lidl operates around 11,550 stores and is active in 32 countries. The grocer runs about 170 stores in nine East Coast states. Arlington, Va.-based Lidl US is No. 91 on the PG 100.

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