New Granite Building Coming Soon
Yesterday two events occurred with potentially huge and overwhelmingly positive impacts on Greenbelt, especially on Roosevelt Center. First, David Frauenheim (of BeSmartHomes) posted these images on Facebook, with this exciting news of closing on the sale of old Professional Building the next day:
Tomorrow is a big day. Kim Kash and her husband Michael Cooney, Taylor Cantwell Cole and her husband Brandon Cole, along with me and my husband Michael are closing on the building currently known as “The Greenbelt Professional Building” at 115 Centerway in the middle of Roosevelt Center. As of tomorrow, it will now be called “The Granite Building at Roosevelt Center.” We named it after the doctor that part of this community for many years and ran his practice in this building.
We will be turning this building into shared offices for people in and around our community. There will be 23 private offices available with share amenities, like conference rooms, lounge, kitchens, and more. In the coming months, you will see some big and little changes, to the building. By Sept 1st should have our first tenants using their new “Home, Away from Home Office” To learn more go to The Granite Building.
The reaction on Facebook was OVERWHELMINGLY enthusiastic, with congratulations galore! I share that sentiment, wish the Granite Building great success, and look forward to it bringing MORE LIFE into the fabulous yet underutilized Roosevelt Center.
New Deal Cafe and Greenbelt Coop Sign New Collaboration
Just across the sidewalk from that building, the New Deal Cafe has been closed since the departure of DC Vegan as food vendors last November, after which a search began for their replacement. But as announced at the Cafe’s June 6 annual meeting, the new vendor relationship will be unlike anything the Cafe has had before – a true collaboration with the 37-year-old Greenbelt Co-operative Grocery Store and Pharmacy.
From the Cafe’s e-newsletter:
During Sunday’s membership meeting, the Cafe’s board announced a historic collaboration between the Cafe and the Greenbelt Co-op Supermarket. Under an agreement in principle between the two cooperatives, the supermarket will run the Cafe’s food and beverage operations, and supermarket general manager Dan Gillotte will serve as the Cafe’s manager. (The New Deal will continue to run the music and arts programs.)
The agreement is the culmination of the Cafe’s six-month-long search for a new kitchen operator, which involved the review of more than 70 resumes and a dozen proposals from a variety of area restaurateurs. “The Greenbelt Co-op made a compelling proposal to us that checked all our boxes: providing quality food for a variety of diets, expanded service hours, affordable prices, and the desire to maintain the friendly, laid-back “community living room” atmosphere that’s been a hallmark of the Cafe for 26 years,” said Michael Hartman, the Cafe board’s president. “We’re thrilled to partner with our fellow cooperative, and believe this arrangement will be perfect for our members, customers, and the community at large.”
Dan Gillotte spoke at the meeting about his excitement for this collaboration, and outlined some of this plans when the Cafe re-opens. Those include keeping the Cafe open seven days a week, from morning to night, and serving delicious food and beverages–including coffee drinks, smoothies, bagels, sandwiches and dinner entrees, along with classic bar food to accompany a great selection of beer and wine. “The new New Deal Café will be a groovy coffee shop/restaurant/bar with all the wonderful music and arts programming you’ve come to love–now 100% cooperatively run!” said Gillotte. “We’re excited to help feed, refresh and caffeinate our friends and neighbors in an exciting, expanded way that celebrates cooperation!”
Congratulations to both co-ops, especially the respective boards of directors, primary negotiators, and Co-op general manager Dan Gillotte on this historic achievement! In the photo above are Michael Hartman, president of the Cafe, and Bill Jones, president of the Co-op, after signing the agreement last night on Michael’s back porch.
The very next morning, the Co-op posted a call for job applicants for the Cafe’s food and beverage operations:
An Open Interview will be held Saturday, June 26, 11am-1pm at the New Deal Café located in Roosevelt Center in Greenbelt, Md. Seeking experienced Cooks, Food Prep, Dish Washers, Counter Help and Bartenders (PT/FT) Salary: $14.40 +Tips. Or send resumes to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The announcement of this collaboration has also seen great support in the community already, and I agree that it’s more great news for the Greenbelt community! 2021 is looking better and better, isn’t it?
(Full disclosure: as of June 6 I’m a member of the Audit Committee of the New Deal Cafe.)