It seems inevitable that the pandemic is going to wreck absolute havoc on the long term retail vibrancy of Georgetown. And we may already be seeing the initial dominoes fall.
Brooks Brothers have already permanently shuttered its Georgetown location. Perhaps this was a long planned closure; it seemed to occur almost immediately after the shut down order was put in place. But there are no reports of wider store closures from the store. This seems to be a one off for just Georgetown.
But more clouds are coming. The Crumbs and Whiskers announced that it will likely close its Cat Cafe:
It should be noted that the company has previously flirted with closing the Cat Cafe before backtracking. So the wreckage of the Coronavirus may have simply cause a re-revisit of those plans.
But if both these closures are merely those close to the edge simply falling off, that is cold comfort. Lots of Georgetown stores are close to the edge. Restaurants and bars have gotten the most attention during the shutdown, but shops are getting hammered just as hard, and don’t even have the salve of take-out or delivery to mitigate the pain.
Retail already faced an uncertain future in the age of Amazon. Sadly the virus may clear up that uncertainty, but not in the direction we’d hope.