Washington, D.C.-based indie Politics and Prose Bookstore has announced plans to open a second location at Union Market, a food and artisan hub located in the capital’s northeast district. The store is set to open this fall in an area next to the market’s existing indoor hall.
In a statement, the bookstore’s management said the Union Market space will not be as large as the 9,000 sq. ft. flagship location on Connecticut Ave., but “big enough to carry a wide range of books and non-book items.” The new location will host regular author readings, utilizing nearby spaces within the market for large events.
Union Market is operated by the South Carolina-based real estate investment firm Edens, which began revitalizing the spot (which is the city’s former Union Terminal Market) in 2012. Union Market currently includes over 40 restaurants, artisan shops, and maker spaces.
Politics and Prose co-owner Bradley Graham, who purchased the 33-year old bookstore with his wife Lissa Muscatine in 2011, said he was drawn to the Union Market location for two reasons. He was intrigued by being a part of redevelopment in a historic neighborhood, and opening a location in an area that currently lacks bookstores.
It is not the first time Graham and Muscatine have mulled ways of reaching readers in other D.C. neighborhoods. In 2013 they considered opening a location in Georgetown, but plans for the store never materialized. Two years later, they signed on to operate the city's three locations of the restaurant, bookstore, and performance venue Busboys & Poets.
Earlier this month, they announced that they would discontinue their partnership with Busboys. In an e-mail to customers informing them about the end of that relationship, Graham and Muscatine hinted about big plans were afoot. They wrote that selling books through Busboys’ various locations had “underscored for us the interest that many have in seeing more bookstores in a city that loves to read.”
In their statement about the new Union Market location, Graham and Muscatine said they feel they can bring something unique to this particular spot. “It has great potential to become a thriving literary community.”