(Washington D.C.) -Today, Mayor Vincent C. Gray and Frager’s Hardware owner John Weintraub announced that the District’s had expedited an agreement with the Capitol Hill business to continue operating its lawn-and-garden store on the concrete pad on 7th Street SE that formerly served as the foundation for the temporary location of Eastern Market.
The arrangement follows a devastating fire that completely gutted the 90-year-old Capitol Hill business on the evening of June 5. Since 1923, Frager’s has sold hardware on the corner of 11th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue SE. Over the years, the business has expanded to include the sale of housewares, paint, lawn-and-garden supplies and other goods.
“Frager’s Hardware is one of the most beloved businesses in the District, and none of us can imagine the Capitol Hill community without Frager’s,” said Mayor Gray. “We wanted to ensure that the District did everything we could to help this locally owned and operated small business weather the hardship caused by this fire and continue serving its neighborhood and employing District residents as it rebuilds.”
The agreement is with the District’s Department of General Services (DGS), which controls the parcel. Weintraub has vowed to rebuild his entire operation, but the arrangement with DGS allows the lawn-and-garden portion of the business to reopen almost immediately – helping to maintain a revenue stream during the busy summer season. While the interior portions of the hardware store were completely destroyed by the blaze, many of the plants and supplies in the nursery were left undamaged. Frager’s employs 65 people.