Glover Park has joined the list of District neighborhoods without a cap on new liquor licenses for restaurants and liquor stores. The Alcoholic Beverage Control Board decided to lift the cap in Glover Park, effective May 3, just shy of a month after Georgetown’s moratorium was allowed to expire April 9. However, the cap on taverns, nightclubs and multipurpose facilities will remain in effect for another five years.
This is potentially good news for the Rite Aid at 2255 Wisconsin Ave. NW, which has argued for lifting the ban on liquor stores since the pharmacy was rejected for a beer and wine license in January, due to the proximity of the Whole Foods nearby. Regulations require businesses with that license be spaced at least 200 feet away from each other. They then applied for a full-service liquor license, which requires a distance of 400 feet between stores with the same license. The Rite Aid is located right between, and at least 400 feet, from the nearest full-service liquor stores: Pearson’s, at 2436 Wisconsin Ave. NW, and Wide World of Wines, at 2201 Wisconsin Ave. NW.
The ABC board will continue to decide on licenses on a case-by-case basis, despite lifting the ban on new licenses, and the Rite-Aid application continues to face opposition from within the community. After a recent Advisory Neighborhood Commission 3B meeting, chair Jackie Blumenthal told The Current, “We have plenty of alcohol availability in Glover Park. It’s a three-block commercial district. We have 24 liquor licenses — that’s quite enough.”
Both the ANC 3B and the Glover Park Citizens Association voted against issuing the license and responses to a community survey were mostly against it. Approval is ultimately up to the ABC Board, which is planning to decide on the matter soon.