Why Hyattsville Needs a Coffee Shop

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Photo by Flickr user Doug88888 http://bit.ly/18OHD8e

Hyattsville needs a coffee shop.

Don’t get us wrong. You can get a cup of joe at Busboys and Poets, Franklin’s, Shagga Ethiopian restaurant, Café AzulUnder the Coconut Tree and even Yes! Organic Market.

But a coffee shop is a different thing. It is, as Hemingway wrote, a “clean and pleasant café” that is “well-lighted.” (He also said it shouldn’t have music, but we differ on that point.) Or, in the words of sociologist Ray Oldenburg, it is “a great good place” — a third space after our homes and workplaces:

The character of a third place is determined most of all by its regular clientele and is marked by a playful mood, which contrasts with people’s more serious involvement in other spheres. … They are the heart of a community’s social vitality, the grassroots of democracy, but sadly, they constitute a diminishing aspect of the American social landscape.

The original plan for the Arts District was to include either a Starbucks, Caribou Coffee or even local coffee roasters Mayorga. That didn’t work out (though there is a Starbucks near the Prince George’s Metro) but that doesn’t mean there’s not a market for it. (Chipotle also initially said no — and it’s always packed.)

Even better would be an independent, maybe an outpost of something like Zeke’s, which is opening a shop farther south on Rhode Island Avenue and is a popular vendor at the Riverdale Park Farmer’s Market.

Sure, running a coffee shop is hard work, and profits average about 2.5 percent. But coffee consumption grew five percent since last year and there are now 20,000 coffee shops in the U.S. with combined revenues of more than $10 billion. (And how many products are psychologically guaranteed to draw repeat business?)

With the Palette apartments filling up, new row homes being built in the Arts District and the local restaurant scene drawing more attention, the area along Route 1 seems ripe for a coffee shop.

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8 Responses to Why Hyattsville Needs a Coffee Shop

  1. Heidi says:

    Someone would make a killing if they’d open a good coffee shop in the area.

  2. Fern says:

    Here, here!

  3. Mary Ryan says:

    Amen to that! Right after we moved into ADH and before all the retail space at the ADH Town Center was leased, I posted on the Starbucks site that the area was prime for their presence. And every time I gaze at that old auto repair shop at the corner of Route 1 and Madison, I think of how awesome it would be as a coffee shop! : )

  4. Jennifer says:

    I just sent an email to Peregrine Espresso – maybe they’d be interested??

  5. E in Rosedale says:

    Coffee shop? I’ll second that. Lots of appropriate business space for lease too. Would prefer Mayorga, I s’pose.

  6. Billy Kangas says:

    Amen, Amen Amen!

    I am a cafe vetran (7 shops two roasters) and would be happy to help anyone who wanted to give it a go

  7. Sarah W says:

    Yes, as a native Northwesterner, I can say this area sorely lacks a coffee shop. At this point I’d settle for a Starbucks-like chain, but certainly Zeke’s or an independent place would be preferable. The lack of a coffee shop culture in this part of the country has been difficult to understand and adjust to.

  8. Jennifer says:

    And if there can’t be a local coffee shop – folks can at least pretend they are in one: http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/06/21/how-the-hum-of-a-coffee-shop-can-boost-creativity/?_r=4&

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