Currently, Busboys & Poets has four locations in D.C. proper, one in Virginia, and one in Maryland. By next year, a brand new restaurant will open up in the Anacostia neighborhood, making it the first Busboys & Poets in D.C.’s Southeast quadrant. This Thursday, there was a groundbreaking ceremony for the new location with D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser, Director of the D.C. Department of Energy & Environment Tommy Wells, and Busboys & Poets Founder Andy Shallal.
Originally, the opening for the Anacostia location of Busboys & Poets was slated for the spring of 2016, but it was later moved up to the summer of 2017. This new location will house a training area for culinary students.
The property was constructed in 1940 and is located at 2004-2010 Martin Luther King, Jr. Avenue SE. Before the two-story building became vacant, it served as a bowling alley and furniture store. Unity Healthcare and the D.C. Primary Care Association expressed interested in redeveloping the building into a health facility, but the plans eventually fell through due to opposition from locals.
D.C.-based Local Initiatives Support Corporation has invested in the project. The corporation has also invested $50 million to protect Anacostia’s residents from displacement caused by planned developments.