Serving the GW Community since 1904

The GW Hatchet


The GW Hatchet

Serving the GW Community since 1904

The GW Hatchet

Sign up for our twice-weekly newsletter!

Coggins’ looks to expand to other DC-area locations

In a market saturated with upscale sandwich shops such as Au Bon Pain, Cosi and Potbelly, Coggins’ Sandwich Manufactory is planning to expand from its first location in Ivory Tower.

Ron Boatright, manager of Coggins’, said the restaurant has already secured a location in the Fair Oaks Mall in Fairfax, Va. The lease, which has been in the works since the summer, will allow the GW venue to open a second, larger store.

“The location we’re in now is about one half the size of what we originally planned a standard Coggins’ to look like,” Boatright said. “(The new location) will be about twice the size of the current Coggins’ and provide much more seating for the customers.”

The new restaurant, which will open in January, will feature the same factory theme of the store on the corner of 23rd and G streets, as well as a similar menu.

Boatright said he has received offers for new sites to expand his business. He added that he is looking for locations with “great visibility and constant foot traffic” to build on the success Coggins’ has experienced on GW’s campus.

“We knew we wanted Washington from the beginning. This site became available and it was a no-brainer,” Boatright said. “It was a brand new facility, it was directly across from Greek row and from the (Health and) Wellness Center, and we are close to the Foggy Bottom Metro stop, which gives us some great business from State Department employees on their commutes.”

Eric Hougen, project manager in the Office of Business and Operations, said that while GW is aware that Coggins’ is planing to expand, they do not have any additional deals with GW.

Coggins’ offers hot sandwiches in a setting reminiscent of a 1920s factory. Patrons can choose from a variety of items, ranging from a roll piled high with a variety of deli meats to a less traditional sandwich stuffed with peanut butter, marshmallow fluff and bananas. Coggins’ also offers a variety of dressings and sauces, along with soups, salads and baked goods.

Boatright said he may face strong competition from some of the District’s other sandwich manufacturers but said his commitment to customer service will distinguish Coggins’ from other similar chains.

“It’s all about the people,” he said. “The other restaurants have great sandwiches, but if we make the difference in service, then people will come to that.”

The manager at the 19th and L streets Potbelly Sandwich Works, which offers hot sandwiches at similar prices to Coggins’, and has a similar ambiance, deferred comment on possible competition to the chain’s corporate headquarters. Potbelly officials did not return phone calls for comment earlier this week.

Boatright said he has enjoyed forging a relationship with students and said he will use his consumer-oriented philosophy at his other shops.

Dana Chester, a junior who has been to Coggins’ twice, said it offers pleasant customer service.

“I think they are definitely one of the more friendly places on campus,” she said.

Chester added that a successful expansion will require Coggins’ to find convenient locations throughout the city.

Sophomore Mark Lazarus said he enjoys going to Coggins’ but added that they will face some stiff competition in the D.C. food market.

“Their success is going to depend a lot on location,” he said. “Since they’re competing with Potbelly they need to establish locations far from existing Potbelly locations.”

More to Discover
Donate to The GW Hatchet