(Corrected at 8:30 a.m. Friday) City Bikes is leaving Barracks Row.

The bike shop at 709 8th St. SE will close its doors on Sunday, an employee told us over the phone us this morning.

According to neighborhood blog The Hill is Home, the company’s general manager said the company was not able to renegotiate its lease for the space. The manager added that the company would like to return to Capitol Hill at some point in the future, according to The Hill is Home.

The Barracks Row location opened in 2011. City Bikes currently has locations in Adams Morgan and Chevy Chase, and is planning a third location in Tenleytown.

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Morning Rundown

Hudson News at Union Station

Fire Shut Down Stadium-Armory Station for Nearly 10 Hours — Fire officials still are investigating the cause of a fire at a Metro power facility that burned throughout the day yesterday, closing the nearby Stadium-Armory Metro station for most of the day. [NBC Washington]

New Restaurant and Wine Bar to Open Near Lincoln Park — Lincoln Park Kitchen and Wine Bar, which will replace Ninnella Italian restaurant at the corner of 13th and East Capitol streets SE, is slated to open in early October. [Barred in DC]

Capitol Hill School Accused of Violating Rules on Standardized Tests — The Capitol Hill campus of Center City Public Charter Schools is one of six D.C. schools accused of violating standardized testing rules. Students at Center City said a test administrator encouraged them to change their answers to some questions. [Washington Post]

Restaurant Near U.S. Capitol Will Close if Forced to Remove Patio Seating, Eatery’s Owners Say — Owners of The Alibi restaurant at 237 2nd St. NW said a District Department of Transportation order to remove their sidewalk patio enclosure will eliminate two-thirds of the eatery’s seating and force it to shut down. [PoPville]


Capitol Hill next month is set to lose a store that has sold wigs of seemingly all sizes, colors and styles for more than a decade on Pennsylvania Avenue SE.

Kay Wigs at 325 Pennsylvania Ave. SE is slated to close Oct. 31, after losing its lease, shop owner Kay Kim said today. Kim’s landlord is planning to sell the building that has housed the store in its basement for 13 years, she said.

Kim, who started her business in the 1970s, said she is looking to sell wigs by mail or at another location following her store’s closure. But for now, she is offering discounts of 20 to 75 percent off on wigs, as well as the jewelry, hats and other accessories that she sells.

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A family-owned organic grocery store on the H Street corridor is set to close down after about a year in business.

H Street Organic Market at 806 H St. NE will stop selling soy milk, kale chips and other organic foods tomorrow, workers at the store confirmed today. It wasn’t immediately clear what would happen to the space after the store’s departure.

A cashier, who declined to give her name for publication, said the market has been struggling since it opened last year.

“The people, they walk by and they aren’t interested,” she said while pointing out the window. “They think it will be too expensive.”

“It’s too bad because some of them could use it,” she added, referring to the all-natural health foods inside the shop.

The owner of the market couldn’t immediately be reached for comment.

The store is discounting all its products by 20 percent until it closes.


Capitol Hill Sporting Goods & Apparel

A Barracks Row sports retailer is set to shut down before the year’s end, becoming the latest shop in a string of stores that have closed or are slated to cease business on 8th Street SE in 2015.

The closure of Capitol Hill Sporting Goods & Apparel at 727 8th St. SE later this year would follow the recent shuttering of the Be With Me Playseum on Barracks Row and Homebody’s impending move from 8th Street to 7th Street SE.

Rodney Smith, owner of Capitol Hill Sporting Goods & Apparel, said his 14-year-old shop is having trouble competing. Capitol Hill Corner first reported on his struggles last year.

“There’s just too much competition in the area,” he told Hill Now. “Any time you bring in five Wal-Marts to one area, how are we supposed to compete?”

Smith said he didn’t know what he would do after his store closes.

“I’ve just got to get out of this mess first,” he said.

It wasn’t clear exactly when the shop would close or what would replace it. But the store is offering a discount of up to 50 percent on all stock until its final day of business.

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Playseum (Photo via Playseum)The Be With Me Playseum on Barracks Row will shut down this weekend as its owner continues to search for a new building to house the children’s used bookstore and play space.

Gina Seebachan, who owns the Playseum at 545 8th St. SE, said yesterday she no longer has plans to lease a space on Pennsylvania Avenue SE, as she told Hill Now last week. Seebachan said in an email that she has yet to find a building that is “conducive to the Playseum or our budget.”

The Barracks Row shop, which opened in 2011, is scheduled to close Saturday, after Seebachan had trouble making her rent payments on time.

“We need to find ourselves a bit smaller place especially when Barracks Row is prime real estate,” she said.

The Playseum may reopen in the District outside of Capitol Hill, Seebachan said. But the owner said she would try to ensure the shop is near a Metro station, if it permanently leaves the neighborhood.

For now, Seebachan is putting the play art shop, grocery store and the other fixtures of the Playseum in storage. She also is offering one free visit to her other Playseum location in Bethesda for any families that visit the Barracks Row shop before it closes.

“We are ever so grateful that the landlord in Bethesda continues to support and stand by us even in times of difficulty,” Seebachan said. “I would love to thank the community for allowing the Playseum to be here for the almost five years we were here.”

Photo via Playseum


Playseum (Photo via Playseum)The Be With Me Playseum might not be done with Capitol Hill after it is set to close next week, the owner of the children’s used bookstore and play space said today.

Gina Seebachan, who owns the Playseum at 545 8th St. SE, said she is looking to sign a lease for a space on Pennsylvania Avenue SE, near the CVS and Labyrinth Games & Puzzles. The Barracks Row shop, which opened in 2011, is slated to close May 30, after Seebachan had trouble making her rent payments on time, Capitol Hill Corner first reported.

Seebachan declined to give the address of the Pennsylvania Avenue SE space, which she hopes to move to later this summer. But it’s smaller and cheaper to rent than her current location, she said.

“I think there’s such a need for [the Playseum] in the city,” said Seebachan, who also has one of the bookstores in Bethesda.

Visitors to the Playseum on Barracks Row would have a similar experience at a new location, Seebachan said. But she still is working on her plans for a new Playseum.

The Barracks Row space has several different play rooms for kids, including an art shop, a restaurant and a grocery store. It also hosts birthday parties and field trips.

Before the Playseum closes, Seebachan said she will waive the store’s $7 admission fee for veterans who bring their children to play over Memorial Day weekend.

On its last day, the Playseum will have a party in which children can make ceramic tiles with their hand prints. The tiles will help make a counter at the entrance of a new Playseum, Seebachan said.

Photo via Playseum


RadioShack on D Street SE (Photo via Google Maps)The RadioShack near the Eastern Market Metro station is open until further notice, though the company is closing thousands of stores nationally after filing for bankruptcy last week.

The 717 D St. SE store will be open at least through the end of this month, employees said today.

RadioShack filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on Thursday and will sell as many as 2,400 of its stores to hedge fund Standard General, The Wall Street Journal reported. Those stores will sell a mix of electronics and Sprint products.

According to court documents, RadioShack locations that will close by March 31 include 1830 K St. NW, 1150 Connecticut Ave. NW, 4531 Wisconsin Ave. NW, 1060 Brentwood Road NE and 2837 Alabama Ave. SE.

Photo via Google Maps


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