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Near Southeast DC Past News Items: Novel South Capitol
See JDLand's Novel South Capitol Project Page
for Photos, History, and Details
In the Pipeline
Yards/Icon Theater
1000 South Capitol
25 M
Chiller Site Condos
Yards/Parcel A
1333 M St.
New Douglass Bridge
More Capper Apts.
250 M St.
New Marine Barracks
Nat'l Community Church
Factory 202/Yards
SC1100
Completed
99 M ('18)
Agora ('18)
1221 Van ('18)
District Winery ('17)
Insignia on M ('17)
F1rst/Residence Inn ('17)
One Hill South ('17)
Homewood Suites ('16)
ORE 82 ('16)
The Bixby ('16)
Dock 79 ('16)
Community Center ('16)
The Brig ('16)
Park Chelsea ('16)
Yards/Arris ('16)
Hampton Inn ('15)
Southeast Blvd. ('15)
11th St. Bridges ('15)
Parc Riverside ('14)
Twelve12/Yards ('14)
Lumber Shed ('13)
Boilermaker Shops ('13)
Camden South Cap. ('13)
Canal Park ('12)
Capitol Quarter ('12)
225 Virginia/200 I ('12)
Foundry Lofts ('12)
1015 Half Street ('10)
Yards Park ('10)
Velocity Condos ('09)
Teague Park ('09)
909 New Jersey Ave. ('09)
55 M ('09)
100 M ('08)
Onyx ('08)
70/100 I ('08)
Nationals Park ('08)
Seniors Bldg Demo ('07)
400 M ('07)
Douglass Bridge Fix ('07)
US DOT HQ ('07)
20 M ('07)
Capper Seniors 1 ('06)
Capitol Hill Tower ('06)
Courtyard/Marriott ('06)
Marine Barracks ('04)
 
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11 Blog Posts Since 2003
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It would be terribly hokey for me to say something along the lines of, "It's almost Halloween, and the neighborhood is appropriately decked out with skeletons." So, I won't. But there is a whole lot of construction going on, counting not only nearly finished buildings, but also buildings getting their faces put on or heading toward topping out or now "going vertical" below ground level.
I'll go in order from newest to oldest, starting with peering down into holes that you might not be looking into yourselves.
Three residential projects that began excavating in the spring are already starting to climb upward, as you can see in the above photos from 1000 1st Street and the Maren at Florida Rock. Tishman Speyer's mystery residential project that covers all of what's known as Square 696 is a hybrid, with some excavation still underway while the eastern half is now starting to rise. (and no, we still don't have renderings.) Then there's phase two of One Hill South (Two Hill South? One Hill South Two? Return of One Hill South? One Hill South, Electric Boogaloo?), where digging is being hampered by complaints of fumes emanating from the site's past life as a gas station.
Next we turn to the neighborhood's EIGHT projects that are above ground but not yet topped out. (I could call it six, since there are two projects with two buildings going up concurrently, but let's call an eight an eight.)
Let's start with residential projects The Garrett at 2nd and I, Parc Riverside Phase II at Half and L, and the second phase of Novel South Capitol at 4 I, which was kind of a shocker to see go up since it was never really announced that the entire project would be under construction at once:
I'll note that the photo of the Garrett is a bit of a triumph, because it's the first one I've gotten from the northeast, now that the wrapping up of tunnel construction has given me some sidewalk access to the intersection at 2nd and H. (Which hopefully will be open completely by Oct. 18, the Whole Foods Day of All Days.)
Next, let's wander down to the Ballpark District, where the National Association of Broadcasters headquarters is a whisker away from topping out and its sibling the Avidian condo building is now well visble. One block away, 1250 Half is in its final minutes of not being completely above ground, as the portion closer to N Street is now right even with the street, while its northern portion has been skeletoning for quite some time. And at 3rd and Tingey, the combo project of the Thompson hotel and the Estate apartment building are beginning to change the feel of the western side of the Yards Park.
{Pant, pant.}
Now, a quick look at the buildings getting their faces on, since this is the stage when everyone is pretty much tapping their toes and waiting for the projects to be finished already. (There's a section of Virginia Avenue that qualifies for that, too.) May I present West Half at Half and N, the Harlow mixed-income building at 3rd and L, the Bower/Guild condo/rental buildings, and the new DC Water headquarters.
To wrap it up, there's one additional ghostly building to keep an eye on, though I don't wish to be flippant about it. Ward 6 councilmember Charles Allen is holding a hearing on Oct. 25 about the fire and response, for those interested.
And that's "it." Ha. Ha. I imagine the next major update will be in December, when I will spend most of the time complaining about how the low sun angle and a decade's worth of construction has made it impossible to take photos unruined by shadows. I may have to (gasp!) go out on cloudy days until spring.
 

Having talked you through the tour of new skeletons, I'll now move to the buildings that have been topped out for a while and are getting their faces on. as I like to say.
* At left, we have what is now known as "Novel South Capitol," previously known as 2 I Street, aka The Building That Took Away McDonald's and Broke JD's Heart. And, as a tidbit for loyal readers who actually read what I write in this posts, I see an approved building permit for phase two of this project, at 4 I Street. (There's a reference in the permit to a name "Velocity"--I assume someone will point out the error of that at some point.) This first phase is a 380-unit apartment building.
* At right, we have the still-as-yet-unnamed mixed-income apartment building at 2nd and L, just a few steps from Canal Park. It is slated to 179ish units, of which 36 will be for public housing residents. This building is part of the huge Capper/Carrollsburg redevelopment, and may before long have DDOT as a sibling on the south side of that block. It's also supposed to have a small amount of retail in the portion of the ground floor that faces the park.
But wait, there's more!
*Transition from beige brick to red brick, we have the latest look at the Bower, the 138-unit condo building at 4th and Tingey in the Yards. This photo is taken from its east side, at what will be a new intersection of 5th and Tingey. And behind the Bower, where you see the green wall covering, we have...
* The Guild (at least we think it's going to be called the Guild), the 190-unit rental building that is actually two parallel towers that run north/south behind the Bower, as more clearly seen in the middle photo. There will be a new block of Water Street running between the Guild and the parking lot, hooking up with the new 5th Street to the east.
* Lastly, I decided to toss in a photo of the back of the new DC Water headquarters, to not only show how the new building wraps around the existing (and still operational) O Street pumping station, but how the back of the building now has colored panels that mimic the front's glass, so that it isn't the stark green monolith that had people a little nervous a few months ago.
Head to the project pages of each of these buildings to see more before and afters, renderings, sliders, and whatnot.
Coming next, a look at two projects that are refusing to adhere to my facile skeletons/facings/holes construct.
 

I somewhat unexpectedly found myself wandering around on Sunday, and though the official JDLand camera stayed home and drank hot chocolate, the JDLand cellphone (a Pixel 2, thanks for asking) stepped in to catch some progress pics.Here's a rundown:
* HELLO, AVIDIAN: After being burned multiple times over the years with projects being said to include condos during the design phase only to end up as rentals, it's nice to have confirmation via the purty new fence signage at South Capitol and M that not only that the corner will be home to the new headquarters for the National Association of Broadcasters, but that the sibling building immediately to the south that was oddly dubbed 10 Van is now known as the Avidian, and that it will be condominiums, "Selling 2018." The building should have 170ish units and will probably be completed in 2019.
* PEEKING OUT: We have three newcomers to ground level, as the 380-unit apartment building at South Capitol and I is now clearly visible from the street, as is the 190-unit rental sibling to the further-along Bower at Yards Parcel O on 4th Street. Plus, the 420-unit West Half building immediately north of Nats Park now has its first batches of rebar out of the ground, if your eyes know what to look for. (And yes, I'm still completely failing at catching the work underway on what's now known as the Emblem at Barracks Row, the 20-unit condo building at 8th and Virginia. One of these days.)
* ONWARD AND UPWARD: The new DC Water HQ continues to get its face put on, while the condo building known as the Bower at 4th and Tingey has completed seven of its 10ish floors, and at 2nd and L the next Capper mixed-income building is through Floor #4 of its own 10ish floors. {Trying to avoid any arguments about whether penthouses = floors.}
* DOWN ON THE CORNER: There's officially another project underway, as digging is now proceeding at 2nd and I for The Garrett, the third and final portion of WC Smith's "Collective" development that also includes the Park Chelsea and Agora (and this, of course). Meanwhile, there are still holes at the second phase of the Parc Riverside at Half and L (below), and at Monument Valley, which is impossible to get a shot of from street level so you'll just have to imagine it. And I forgot to look behind the fence at Parcel L.
There will probably be some new holes in the ground in coming months, as both the rumor mill and the permitting pipeline hint that at least three more projects will get underway: Dock 79's residential sibling at the old Florida Rock site, the large residential development on the old "Congressional Square" site at 1st and K, and Paradigm's 275ish-unit residential building on the old Market Deli site at 1st and L. (Though I'll note that each of these still do not have permit applications in the system yet beyond the initial shoring/sheeting/excavation step.) The number of still-empty lots keeps a'shrinking....
 

Time for my quarterly {ahem} update on all of the construction projects you are picking your way past when you walk/drive/bike around the Hood:
I'll start with the new openings and the coming soons, with both Due South Dockside and Morini Piccolo now operating (softly) on the Yards Park boardwalk, and Cava in the Homewood Suites at Half and M in Any Second Now territory:
As for buildings getting their faces on, I present Skanska's 99 M office building and the new DC Water headquarters:
There's also now two new arrivals above ground, as PN Hoffman's condo project The Bower has at last made its debut at 4th and Tingey, as has the DC Housing Authority's as-yet unnamed mixed-income rental building at 2nd and L, both of which are shot from the south instead of the intersection because it's now the time of year when anything shot to the south-southeast, south or south-southwest will look terrible, no matter what time of day:
Next on the assembly line, two more residential projects projects are likely to be making their above-ground debuts before the end of the year: JBG's West Half project directly north of Nats Park, and the McDonalds-slaying 2 I Street project:
Other holes in the ground I won't highlight this time around include the Bower's sibling rental project at 4th and Water, Toll Brother's Parc Riverside Phase II at Half and L, the Jair Lynch residential project at the Half Street Hole, and the combo project at South Capitol and M for the new National Association of Broadcasters headquarters and its next-door residential project labeled 10 Van.
Also, WC Smith has cleared the lot at 2nd and I to make way for the beginning of work on the Garrett, the third and final apartment building that makes up "The Collective" on that block. Plus, fences are up along 3rd Street for the next project in the Yards lineup, the 270-unit apartment building currently known as "Parcel L2." (Great, I have to update my Highlighted Projects map again.)
Just to make sure all ends of the construction spectrum are represented, one hole is even starting to get covered over, and that's in the 200 and 300 blocks of Virginia Avenue, where the Virginia Avenue Tunnel work is far enough along that you can actually start to imagine a street appearing again in those blocks in the coming months:
Finally, I'll close with a shot of a tearing down rather than a building up, and that's the pile of debris formerly known as 37 L Street SE--just in time to mark the 40th anniversary of the Cinema Follies fire, on Oct. 24, 1977.
So, while the neighborhood is taking a back seat these days to all of the excitement surrounding the opening of the Wharf down the road, there is still a fair amount happening. (And hopefully the neighborhood blogger will someday get back in the groove. Still riding the rollercoaster of my new not-yet-ready-to-call-it-normal.)
 

Sunday morning brought a confluence of a clear calendar, clear skies, and a sort-of-unexpected desire to "get back to work," such as it is, so I took a long walk to get the JDLand camera caught up with the goings-on in the neighborhood. Here's the rundown:
* UPWARD: The biggest news (for me, anyway) is that at last the 99 M office building project has peeked up above ground-level. Also worth getting excited about is seeing the structural steel going up for the new DC Water headquarters along the banks of the Anacostia.
* DOWNWARD: There's digging underway (or about to be) in multiple locations, and the camera peeked past the fences to check out the holes. In order, may I present the current state of: the former McDonald's site at 2 I Street (where a 380-unit apartment building will rise), the Yards Parcel O site at 4th and Tingey (where a joint condo/apartment project has been slooowly underway thanks to the need to dig very carefully when it's an old munitions site), the mixed-income Capper apartment building at 3rd and L, and the JBG West Half residential project directly north of Nats Park.
(I missed the hole at South Capitol and M where the new NAB headquarters and the 10 Van residential building will rise, but it probably doesn't look all that much different from this.)
Then there's the Half Street Hole, where work does appear to be underway, but since excavation was done in 2007, it's kind of hard to tell what's new (I should have gone up to the Hampton Inn roof). Finally, there's the lot at Half and L where fences recently went up around the site that will be Phase II of the Parc Riverside apartment building, but while some dirt has been turned, heavy equipment isn't quite yet on site.
So, if you are counting, that is eight additional projects that will rise out of the ground in the coming year or so, along with the four others that are already above ground but not done.
* OUTWARD: Vertical construction has been finished for a while at the residential building 1221 Van just north of the ballpark, but exterior work has progressed since I last wandered by. And ditto for the District Winery building at 4th and Water.
* ONWARD: Some additional catching up.
And there are going to be lots of other "for the historical record" photos that have been needed to be taken for some months added to various project pages in coming days. Just click around from the main map--you'll never know what you might find.
Coming Soon, a Coming Soon post.
 

While I was on the roof of F1rst earlier this week, the view to the west was striking. Immediately north of Nats Park, with the long-forlorn block of Half Street between the Center Field Gate and the Metro station running down the middle of the frame, my camera spied:
* The first piles being driven for JBG's West Half residential and retail project;
* Some evidence of initial activity at Monument Valley, where Jair Lynch's 1250 Half Street residential and retail project is set to finally fill in the hole that has existed on the east side of Half Street since 2007; and
* Shoring/sheeting/excavation underway on the southern part of Monument's combination project of the new headquarters for the National Association of Broadcasters and a residential building at 10 Van Street (here's a closer shot).
Here's what West Half, 1250 Half, and the NAB HQ will look like when they are finished, perhaps in very late 2018 or probably 2019:
These three projects join the other buildings that complete the N Street lineup across from the ballpark--JBG's under construction apartment building at 1221 Van (at the upper left of the above photo) and the Hampton Inn that's been open at 1st and N since late 2015.
What this means is that we will now move from nine years' worth of complaining about how nothing has been built directly north of Nats Park to two years of complaining about construction noise and ickiness, leading into the inevitable future complaining about how these new buildings with all of the retail people have complained about not having end up ruining what views remained of the Capitol dome from inside the ballpark.
Progress!
And these are not the only projects just getting started. Piles have also been driven for the DC Housing Authority's latest Capper Hope VI mixed-income apartment building at 3rd and L, and digging is well underway for the new apartment building at the old McDonald's site at 2 I St., which I don't actually have a recent photo of and so one from February will have to do. I suck. Plus, digging sloooowly continues at the Yards Parcel O apartment/condo dual project.
On the bright side, we're about to have a long-watched hole finally graduate to above-ground construction, as Skanska's 99 M office building is at last reaching street level.
With the completions in 2016 and early 2017 of eight apartment buildings, and with eight more buildings looking to join them in the next two years, the neighborhood now has what can not-so-charitably be called a "glut" of new apartments, as Bisnow reported last week in its story on how the city is seeing a record number of residential units deliver in the second quarter of 2017. (I should of course give you hard numbers of total units, but see my earlier comment about my current state.)
However, if you are looking for a place to live in Near Capitol Ballpark River Yards, having multiple buildings vying for your business is certainly good news for you.
 

As first reported by commenter NJAve late yesterday, and then confirmed on Twitter (with photographic evidence) by another reader, the McDonald's at South Capitol and I Streets, SE, is closing today, Tuesday, Dec. 13.
It was about 14 months ago that word first started filtering out about plans to redevelop the site, and in early 2016 the designs were unveiled for a two-phase project starting with a 380-unit apartment building at the corner of South Capitol and I. A raze permit has been filed for, and excavation and foundation permits are currently in process.
Until such time as McDonald's decides to deign the neighborhood south of the freeway with its presence again, the closest outlet for Big Macs, Egg McMuffins, and the best fountain Diet Coke on the planet is at 4th and C, SW (though 15th and Pennsylvania SE is the closest drive-through, and perhaps the one in Crystal City on Route 1 is the quickest-closest).
See my 2 I project page for more renderings, and photos. And maybe I'll throw this one out, for one last time. ("One last time / Relax, sit and have a Diet Coke with me / One last tiiiimmmeee.....")
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More posts: Novel South Capitol, Restaurants/Nightlife, mcdonalds
 

I suspect this will bring about some strong feelings, but it is still incumbent upon me to report that a raze application has been filed in recent days for the McDonald's at South Capitol and I Streets.
This is where RCP Development is planning a two-phase project that will start with a 380-unit apartment building.
I know nothing about any expected closing date for Mickey D's, which was just renovated in 2012. But I have heard rumors that the developers are looking to start construction on the apartment project late this year, and this raze application would certainly seem to be in line with that.
As a devotee of McDonald's fountain Diet Coke, I am willing to go on record in saying that this pains me.
Comments (26)
More posts: Novel South Capitol, Development News, mcdonalds
 

With a Board of Zoning Adjustment hearing coming soon (as now advertised), the developers planning a residential project on the site where McDonald's currently provides (among other items) tubs of Diet Coke to addicted bloggers have submitted some revisions to the design first seen back in October. The original version is on the left, the new submission on the right:
While there is no change to the overall "program"--a first-phase apartment building with about 380 units and around 2,700 square feet of retail, plus a second phase with either another 170ish apartments, or condos, or maybe even a hotel--there have been some "enhancements and modifications" in response to comments from ANC 6D at its December meeting, including revising the facade facing South Capitol Street and adding glass balconies to the southwest and northwest corners of the building.
They've also revised the rendering of the entranceway (original here, new one seen below). I'm also including the floor plan of the ground floor to show where the "phases" will be, as well as how the interior driveway/courtyard is laid out.
The BZA hearing is February 9.
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More posts: Novel South Capitol, Development News
 

Of all the "old" lots in the neighborhood, one that never really seemed to enter into the discussions of "will it get redeveloped?" has been the McDonald's lot on the northeast corner of South Capitol and I Streets, SE. But lo and behold, RCP Development (the company behind the under-construction apartment building at 82 I/801 New Jersey) has filed plans with the Board of Zoning Adjustment for a two-phase residential building with a total of 558 apartments.
(RCP doesn't actually own the land, but is listed with Crescent Communities LLC as "Contract Purchaser/Development Team," and there is a letter from McDonald's authorizing RCP and Crescent to "represent the Property owner" in all BZA proceedings. McDonald's has owned the land since 1985.)
The first phase would run along South Capitol Street and turn toward the east in an L-shape, paralleling the Southeast Freeway. Tthe second phase would be a tower built to the east, with a glass walkway structure connecting it to the first tower along I Street, and with an open courtyard and driveway (as seen below).
The filings show only about 3,200 square feet of retail at the building's southwest corner. (No word as to whether McDonald's would return, though I note that the rendering above shows a "bank" in that space.) The architect is SK&I.
(As for that Southeast Freeway ramp shown just to the west of the proposed building in the top rendering, it is slated to eventually go away as part of a not-yet-funded not-yet-scheduled later phase of the South Capitol Street reconstruction, with cars instead turning left onto a ramp at a location under the freeway about where Nats Lot HH currently is.)
More as I get it, clearly.
UPDATE: One or two additional tidbits: the first-phase building would be about 380 apartments--the second phase could be more apartments, or condos, or a hotel, at this point undetermined. Also, it's worth keeping in mind that the design in the renderings is a pretty early one.
Comments (31)
More posts: Novel South Capitol, Development News, mcdonalds
 
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