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Shovel-Wielding VIPs Break Ground for Lofts at Capitol Quarter
Mar 5, 2014 1:10 PM
A clearly happy and relieved group of city officials, developers, and residents gathered this morning on the parking lot at 7th and L, SE, to ceremonially break ground on the Lofts at Capitol Quarter
, the 195-unit mixed-income apartment building that marks the latest phase in the redevelopment of the Capper/Carrollsburg
public housing project.
Mayor Vince Gray, DC Housing Authority director Adrianne Todman, Ward 6 council member Tommy Wells, and other speakers all discussed the importance of making sure that residents are not priced out of the District, focusing on the 39 units of public housing that will be included in this project. When this building is completed, DCHA will have replaced 61 percent of Capper's original 707 units of public housing.
A lot of cooks were in the Lofts's $42 million financial kitchen, since DCHA did not use any of the Capper Hope VI funds to get the project underway. Instead, DCHA is acting as a first-time co-developer alongside Urban Atlantic and Forest City Washington, apparently crafting a "unique and complex legal and financial structure" that involves low income tax credits, DC Housing Finance Agency debt purchased by Citi Community Capital, and a short-term loan made by Industrial Bank.
And because I'm a sucker for photos of dirt being flung into the air, here's a gallery of images from the event
, which included not only the usual lineup of officials but also former and current Capper residents.
As for when "real" groundbreaking will begin, let's just say Any Minute Now. (And Nats fans and commuters should be prepared that Lot W will be cut pretty much in half by this development.)
Groundbreaking on March 5 for Lofts at Capitol Quarter
Feb 26, 2014 6:45 PM
It's getting hard to keep track of all of the projects in the ground around the neighborhood
, and now another one is about to be added to the list: the 195-unit mixed-income apartment building christened the Lofts at Capitol Quarter
is having a ceremonial groundbreaking on March 5 at 10 am, with the mayor, Tommy Wells, and other luminaries expected to be in attendance.
Of course, since this is a ceremonial event, we'll have to see when actual moving of dirt--other than by shovel-wielding VIPs--begins. But financing is in place
, permits are approved, and the DC Housing Authority appears raring to go to get this project underway.
When completed, the building will be run by Forest City's residential management arm, and will have a fitness room, roof decks, interior courtyards, and meeting space. It's expected to take about 20 months to complete once construction begins.
This is the third apartment building to rise up as part of the Hope VI redevelopment of the Capper/Carrollsburg
housing project, and the first to be mixed income, with at least 38 affordable units to be included.
The "Capitol Quarter" moniker comes from the rows of new townhouses
built a few blocks away as part of the Capper redevelopment. In the original plans for Capper's re-do, this site (known as Square 882) was going to be townhouses as well, but was switched to an apartment building in 2009. The south half of the block, facing M Street and the Navy Yard, may someday be the 600 M Street office development, but that does not appear to be happening anytime soon.
Deal Struck for a Homewood Suites Hotel at 50 M Street
Feb 26, 2014 5:55 PM
According to the Washington Business Journal
, the empty lot on the northeast corner of Half and M is now slated to become a 195-room Homewood Suites Hotel
, with a deal having been reached between Hilton and the development group that bought the lot
Back in the pre-ballpark pre-land rush days, a Sunoco station sat on this lot, known as 50 M Street, until 2006, and then the site was bought by Monument Realty in 2007.
The WBJ article says construction could begin on the 11-story building, one block north of Nationals Park, late this year or in 2015, with an opening in 2016. The hotel will have a mix of studio, one- and two-bedroom suites, and about 5,000 square feet of ground-floor retail, which will come in handy with its location directly across the street from the west entrance to the Navy Yard-Ballpark Metro station.
This hotel would join the Courtyard by Marriott
at New Jersey and L and the just-getting-started Hampton Inn
at 1st and N that is expected to open next year. There is also expected to be another hotel as part of the Ballpark Square development just a few feet north of the Hampton Inn on 1st Street south of M.
Note that this deal does not affect the red brick warehouse just to the north of the empty 50 M lot--that building is owned by the feds and is being salivated over by residents who dream of creating the Half Street Market
DC Water Relocation Plans Hit Snag, Stalling Theater Project
Feb 19, 2014 5:32 PM
The Washington Business Journal is reporting that DC Water has rejected the new spot
proferred by the city for the relocation of some of the agency's operations at 1st and O SE, stalling forward progress on Forest City's plans for a 16-screen movie theater
along with residential and retail offerings just east of Nationals Park
Apparently additional relocation sites have been offered by the city to DC Water and are being reviewed, but the article says they have not been named. There's no real explanation of why the agency rejected the site east of 11th Street SE south of Water Street, except for this quote from Deputy Mayor Victor Hoskins: "They [DC Water] have criteria, and what you think works doesn't necessarily work. [...] We were very clear that the site worked, but they were clear that it did not work. They had the option to say no."
In addition to the movie theater, expected to be operated by Showcase Icon
, Forest City has plans
for 600 residential units in two buildings, along with around 50,000 square feet of retail on about five acres of land near (but not including) the historic Main Pumping Station between N Place SE and the Anacostia River.
While this relocation is getting sorted out, you can read my past posts
about the DC Water site project, and check out the latest renderings
of the theater and buildings planned for the site, some of which came along during my hiatus and so haven't officially been mentioned on the blog. Until now!
There's now a follow-up WBJ story with DC Water's side of the story
, saying that the 11th Street site was too small, too narrow, too difficult to navigate, located in a flood plain, in a heavily contaminated Superfund site, and has "tremendous traffic challenges."
It does quote agency head George Hawkins as saying that DC Water is not trying to drag its feet: "We're engaged, we're analyzing sites as fast as we get them."
The article also mentions that if a solution isn't found soon, the DC council may want to reallocate the $15 million it has budgeted for the land acquisition of a new site. "And that could potentially set the Showplace icon theater and associated development back a number of years."
Tuesday Tidbits: Flaky and Distracted
Feb 11, 2014 9:17 AM
A looming snowstorm will always divert my attention, but before the flakes fly, here's a few tidbits:
* I was not there, but the developers of the Florida Rock site
apparently told Monday's ANC 6D meeting that they are looking at a June start of construction for the project's first phase, a 350-unit residential building. However, no building permit applications have been filed yet, with one reason being the need for some curb cut approvals, which the ANC voted to support. So, We Shall See.
* SWill reports
that a developer is in the planning stages for a 260-unit apartment building on South Capitol Street across from Nationals Park, just north of the Camden building that opened last year. There are older rowhomes on the north end of the block
, some or all of which could be incorporated into the project in some way. However, this is technically outside of my boundaries, so other than snapping photos of what will come, I'll be leaving this to Will to cover.
* I feel like I've already mentioned this, but in case I haven't, a raze permit has been filed for St. Matthew's Baptist Church on the southwest corner of New Jersey and L, to make way for Donohoe's 1111 New Jersey residential project
And commenter Alan below adds the tidbit that the church's message board out front now says "Looking for our perfect home."
Condo Project May Be Coming to Yards; Other Yards Updates
Feb 3, 2014 8:38 PM
During Monday night's Zoning Commission hearing on allowing the move of the trapeze school
from "Parcel O" at 4th and Tingey in the Yards to another space at New Jersey Avenue, Forest City's Ramsey Meiser revealed that the company is planning to sell a portion of Parcel O to allow for the development of a condo project there.
Meiser explained that while Forest City doesn't do condo development, "we want to have for-sale product at the Yards," hence the potential deal. The zoning filings say that "Parcel O will be developed in 2014/2015 and construction on Parcel O is expected to be completed by 2016/2017."
I've asked for further detail on this, which I may or may not get anytime soon, and I will update when I receive more.
Other tidbits that came out of the hearing:
* Forest City is in the process of hiring an architect to design a residential building for Parcel H, which is the western half of the parking lot on the southeast corner of 1st and N, directly across from Nationals Park and north of DC Water. There appears to be a desire to develop that site within the next couple of years.
* The company expects the demolition of the NGA building at 1st and M to take approximately six months, and that the reconfiguration of the block
to include the trapeze school, a new park on the north end, and a slightly shrunken parking lot would be completed by the end of 2014.
* The new park, which with the rest of the block would be a temporary use until office buildings are constructed, has enough open green space that Forest City expects to work with the BID to activate it for some sorts of smaller sports activities (bocce and kickball yes, softball probably not).
Oh, and the commission voted 5-0 to approve the special exceptions to allow trapeze school and parking lot on the south end of the 1st and M block
, on the sites technically known as Parcels F and G. (The park would be on Parcel A.) There was some back-and-forth about the need for trees on the site--they weren't included in the plans because Forest City expects buildings to eventually replace the temporary uses, but Forest City has agreed to work with DDOT and the Office of Planning on the issue, and the zoning commissioners did not feel it warranted delaying their vote.
In my haste to get this posted, I should have mentioned that the original Yards plans did include a condo project--a plan to have PN Hoffman convert Building 202
, the red brick building at 5th and M east of what's now Twelve12
. But that project has seemed to stall.
NLRB to 1015 Half St., And Going Outside the Boundaries
Jan 30, 2014 12:32 PM
I tried to hint with my wording down below, but the cat is now out of the bag, as it has been announced that the National Labor Relations Board will be taking 143,000 square feet of space at 1015 Half Street.
I don't have official confirmation, so the best I can do is be all cagey and say that word is filtering out that 1015 Half Street
may finally be about to get a tenant for some of its 410,000 square feet, six years after construction started and nearly three years after it was finished. If this pans out, the newcomers wouldn't arrive before next year, since of course there will first be the inevitable labor to build out the tenant space.
I've also got a bit of non-Near Southeast content to pass along, as the Post's Capital Business section is featuring "A Walking Tour in Pictures: The Final Days of White Flint Mall
," a gallery of photos I took as the go-to shopping destination of my Montgomery County teenage years prepares to close to make way for a 5 million-square-foot mixed-use development. (And because we all know I can't bear to be shackled by space constraints, here's some additional shots
that didn't make the initial cut.)
This is the second one of these features I've done with Jonathan O'Connell and CapBiz, after my Buzzard Point photo tour
last fall, and there will probably be more to come from other soon-to-change areas around the Metro area.
Hampton Inn Construction To Start 'Any Day Now'
Jan 24, 2014 12:05 PM
With newish Sigal Construction signs now up on the fences on 1st Street just north of Nats Park
acting as confirmation, WBJ reports today
that construction is going to start "any day now" on the 168-room Hampton Inn and Suites that was announced a little while back
. A shoring/sheeting permit for a portion of the site was approved in late December, though the building permit itself is still in process.
The article says that construction is expected to be completed in the second quarter of 2015--perhaps the lack of underground parking
for the project and the shoring permit only for one of the five lots the hotel will be situated on means that there won't be as much digging as one would normally see for a 13-story project, which would speed up the timeline.
This hotel, being developed by the Buccini/Pollin Group
, is an L-shaped building that will be wrapping around a separate two-story retail project by Grosvenor right on the northwest corner of 1st and N. And Grosvenor has its own hotel (and a residential building) planned on the same block
, just to the north of the Hampton Inn, though no start date has been announced.
The start of this project may be taking some parking away from the far southern end of Nats Lot F, though I have to admit that I'm not 100 percent sure that this portion of the lot was used last season. Rocklands BBQ had set up a food truck during games on the corner lot (where the retail building will go), but I don't remember if more fences went up a little north of that lot or not. Perhaps someone who parks in Lot F as a commuter can help with the timeline.
Confused? Don't worry, it'll all become clear, but perhaps checking out my Square 701 page
--which covers the Hampton Inn, and the Grosvenor/Skanska Ballpark Square project--will help.
This is the first non-residential new construction building in the neighborhood since the 1015 Half Street
office building was completed in 2011. And it is the second hotel in Near Southeast, joining the Courtyard by Marriott
at New Jersey and L that opened in 2006.
Tuesday Tidbits: Speeding on By
Jan 21, 2014 9:00 AM
* TEETER AND VIDA
: At last week's BID meeting, Michael Stevens said that Forest City would soon be "handing the keys" to Harris Teeter
to begin their build out at the north end of Twelve12
. And apparently the Vida Fitness
space on the south end of the block will be turned over very soon to its tenants as well. Vida is looking at a summer opening, and Teeter in the fall. And leasing for the apartments themselves should start this spring.
* WHOLE FOODS
: Meanwhile, at that other grocery store/residential site
, I'm told that some initial infrastructure work is already underway (probably hard to really differentiate it with all the work going on at the Park Chelsea
next door). The plan is still for 800 New Jersey/Whole Foods
to officially get underway this spring, probably in March (which so often is the month that a developer's thoughts turn to excavation).
* A VIEW OF THE PARK
: And, speaking of the Park Chelsea
, I can now offer this high-speed photo of the construction from a different vantage point from usual (and no, I didn't walk up onto the freeway):
Of course, this view of the Park Chelsea will only last until 800 New Jersey
starts sprouting in the spot in between this construction and the freeway.
At center of the new image is the River Parc
residential building speeding along next to Velocity. But these two don't even tell the entire story of the eight years that passed between them--check out the complete lineup of images
from this angle to see the other buildings that went up since 2005 but are now obscured.
* THE CRAZY AUNT AND HER SLIDES
: Sunday was the 11th anniversary of that fateful drive around the neighborhood that resulted in some photos on my web site, and then yadda yadda, here we are. So of course I have to point you to those pictures
. (Though yes, technically I took my first photos of the area in fall 2000
, but those were on bad film and I didn't even rediscover them until 2004.)
: Adding on to this post with the news that Bluejacket and its much-touted head brewer Megan Parisi have parted ways, according to the Post
800 NJ/Square 737
, 880 NJ/Park Chelsea
, WC Smith/Square 737
, The Yards
Financing Lined Up for Mixed-Income Rental Building at 7th and L
Jan 7, 2014 8:45 AM
The neighborhood appears to have (yet) another residential project likely to get underway in 2014, as the DC Housing Authority has finally gotten the financing together for the long-planned 195-unit mixed-income residential building at 7th and L SE
, on the site of the old Capper Seniors building
The building permit for the project was approved a few months ago, and with money now in place, it's expected that dirt should begin to move within a few months ("expected" as always being the key word). This building, which will face the Marine Bachelor Enlisted Quarters
across L, will be all rentals, and will have 39 affordable housing units alongside the market-rate offerings.
Documents filed with the Recorder of Deeds refer to the project as "The Lofts at Capitol Quarter." The building will be run by Forest City's residential management arm, and will have a fitness room, roof decks, interior courtyards, and meeting space. It's expected to take about 20 months to complete once construction begins.
Nats fans may be a bit chagrined by this news, though, since the new building will take out a chunk of Economy Lot W, cutting the number of spaces down to 186 once the lot is reconfigured (hopefully by Opening Day).
Note that this building is only on the north side of the block, which is why Lot W isn't disappearing completely--yet. The south side is slated to someday be a sizeable office building, though no start date appears to be anywhere on the boards for that.
This will be the first mixed-income apartment building to come out of the Capper Hope VI redevelopment
; the first two apartment buildings completed--Capper Seniors
and 400 M
--are both all affordable-housing units. Four (or maybe five
) additional residential buildings, with another 900-plus mixed-income units including about 285 affordable units, are still to be built before Capper reaches full build-out of its residential component.
This project is now on the 2014 docket along with Forest City's Yards/Parcel N
, WC Smith's 800 New Jersey
(aka The Whole Foods Building), and Donohoe's 1111 New Jersey
, if these developers can make it past my jaded skepticism about announced start dates (well earned during the Lean Years of 2008-2012) and start building.
And, when the Lofts at Capitol Quarter are completed, the south side of L Street between 5th and 7th will look a little different from what was there before
Late Monday Tidbits: Starting 2014 Off Right (Kind Of)
Jan 6, 2014 6:47 PM
Trying to start 2014 off right--even if it means posting a few things I didn't quite get to in 2013.
: Ed Kaminski has resigned as Advisory Neighborhood Commissioner for 6D02, the area basically from the ballpark northward
to the south side of I Street. A special election will be in the offing before too long.
: Via CapBiz, Metro has put out "development concepts
" for the five station sites it is touting to developers. However, when it came to the Navy Yard/Chiller Plant site on the southwest corner of Half and L, there were no pretty drawings, just a suggestion to acquire the privately owned lot next door, and that maybe a project with ground-floor retail would be nice, too. If you want to know the increasingly long history of WMATA's attempts to find a developer for this land (and get a new chiller plant as part of the deal), here's some reading for you
* BALLPARK SQUARE
: New fence signage
along 1st Street north of Nats Park touting the Ballpark Square
residential/hotel/retail development, "delivering in late 2015." There do appear to be building permits for the residential and hotel parts of the development currently working through the pipeline, though there is No Time To Lose to hit that "late 2015" date (and co-developer McCaffery hedges a bit
with "early 2016"). I will note, though, that there is something kind of missing in the rendering shown on the fence signage. (Hint: It's L-shaped, and is by a different developer, and is supposed to start soon too
: The Hill is Home's "Lost Capitol Hill" series looks at the Anacostia Engine House
, located at 8th and Virginia for most of the years from 1839 until the glorious arrival of the Southeast Freeway in the 1960s.
DCHA Looking at Splitting Incomes in Buildings on Square 767
Jan 5, 2014 9:01 PM
City Paper's Housing Complex blog reported last week
that the DC Housing Authority is investigating the possible sale of 10,000 square feet of Capper/Carrollsburg
land on the Square 767, the block bounded by 3rd, 2nd, I, and K, "to a private developer to construct market-rate condominiums, and then to use that money to help build an all-affordable apartment building, with 48 units, on an adjacent parcel."
CP: "The plan would speed up the construction of the delayed replacement units, for which funding has been a sticking point. But it would also mean separating the affordable and market-rate units into separate buildings, which some neighbors see as a violation of the spirit of the Hope VI redevelopment, which has seen low-income and market-rate units blended together throughout the neighborhood."
While no developer has officially been named, I would note that an observant blogger noted back in March
that a soil boring permit on the block now in question had been issued to EYA, developer of the Capitol Quarter
townhomes that make up the bulk of the reconstructed Capper footprint.
ANC commissioner David Garber has made clear his displeasure
with the Housing Authority's lack of pursuit of community input on this plan, and is also quoted by City Paper saying that the proposal is "a pretty big change from people's expectations." At its December meeting, ANC 6D voted
to "express our disapproval of the planned sale."
In response to the article, DCHA emphasized
that this move would not change the overall mixed-income approach for Capper's redevelopment, and added
, "we believe additional homeownership options will be good for the community."
This is not as yet a done deal, with DCHA saying that at this point they have just asked their board for permission to explore the possibility.
In the Hope VI plans for Capper
as approved by the Zoning Commission back in 2004, this block and the two blocks to the south, which run along the eastern edge of Canal Park, are to house for apartment buildings
totaling 613ish mixed-income units. Two additional buildings--on the former site of the trash transfer station at New Jersey and K and on the old Capper Seniors site at 7th and L
on Square 882--would add another 510ish mixed-income units.
Florida Rock Site Needs Decontamination Before Development
Jan 1, 2014 8:09 PM
The land along the Anacostia River south of Nationals Park known to longtime observers as Florida Rock
has not had a simple path
to redevelopment from its prior life as a cement plant site, and now the Washington Business Journal reports
there's a new hurdle: "Preliminary environmental testing completed in the summer of 2012 on the portion of the site that comprises Phase 1 of the project found contaminants related to the previous tenant, Vulcan Materials Co. - specifically, releases from an underground storage tank, 'along with other activities by the tenant on the property.' ” Plus, subsequent testing in late 2013 "revealed more contamination in the remainder of the site."
Patriot Transportation Holding, Inc., owner of the 5.8-acre property that may someday finally become the huge mixed-use RiverFront on the Anacostia
development, stated in its year-end report to the Securities and Exchange Commission that "the presence of contaminated material at our RiverFront on the Anacostia development site may subject us to substantial environmental liability and costs.”
The company has already recorded a $1.77 million expense for the cleanup, but WBJ says that the actual price tag could be higher, and that while the company is requesting that Vulcan Materials, which leased the land from 1986 to 2011, take financial responsibily for remediation costs, Patriot could end up on the hook for the total cleanup cost, as owners of the land. (See the company's SEC filing
for more details, though you'll want to search on "RiverFront" rather than reading the whole thing. Trust me.)
The first phase of the project
, a 350-unit residential building with 18,000 square feet of retail on the site's east end, near Diamond Teague Park, is a joint venture
with MRP Realty. The filing says this first phase is expected to start construction in mid-2014, but I will note that no building permit application for the project appears to have been filed as yet, and those don't always sail through the bureaucracy with lightning speed. We shall see.
(As an aside, one wonders how prospective visitors to the open air temporary bar/events space
proposed for the site but ultimately delayed because of liquor license issues might have reacted to the news of pending environmental remediation. Or if they would have even much cared, as long as they could still play kickball or bocce.)
JBG Picks Up South Capitol and N Lots from Monument
Dec 22, 2013 6:17 PM
DC property records report that JBG has purchased the former Monument Realty parcels on the northeast corner of South Capitol and N, just north of Nats Parking Lot B.
The property records on this week's sale show the buyer as "1244 South Capitol Residential, LLC," which may be a hint at what JBG has in mind for the site. Bisnow
, in quoting JBG's Matt Kelly, says "the firm is 'a probably a year or two from starting anything' at the newly purchased site, and that it could be developed for any number of uses." Bisnow also says JBG paid $17 million for the site.
The main parcel was once home to a BP/Amoco gas station, and five other parcels were undeveloped as well (except for the cutest little yellow building
on South Capitol that disappeared about seven years ago).
Monument and its investment partners (including Lehman Brothers) paid about $10 million for the six lots in multiple transactions in 2005 and 2006, and in 2008 began some initial bureaucratic moves
on plans for a residential building that went nowhere. In late 2010, they went to the Zoning Commission with a request to review new plans for a 12-story office building, but that review didn't move forward until mid-2013, and is in fact scheduled to have its final vote in early January. In the meantime, about a year ago Lehman Brothers took full ownership of the site (since it had been the lender on the original loan).
Thanks to many purchases in the Great Ballpark District Land Rush of 2004-06, Monument at one time controlled quite a few properties in the blocks just north of the ballpark. And while the company still owns the old Domino's site on the southeast corner of South Capitol and M, as well as the infamous Half Street
hole in the ground, the other properties have since fallen off their inventory, including the recently sold 55 M office building
. The company's 50 M site, on the northwest corner of Half and M, was also returned to Lehman Brothers a year ago, and then sold this past May
for $13 million to a team mulling a hotel. And at one point Monument had owned the land along N where the southern end of the Fairgrounds now stands, but sold it to Akridge in 2008
during all the fallout of the sale of the Southeastern Bus Garage.
1111 New Jersey to Go Residential, Start in 2014
Dec 20, 2013 10:50 AM
on Thursday that Donohoe has made its decision to switch the long-planned 1111 New Jersey
office development to a 13-story, 324-unit residential building with 11,000 square feet of ground-floor retail and 213 underground parking spaces. It will be called the "Gallery at Capitol Riverfront."
Further, the construction contract has already been "awarded" (to, ahem, Donohoe Construction), and WBJ quotes a company official as saying the project will begin in the first quarter of 2014, with delivery in 2016.
The site, which is above the New Jersey Avenue portion of the Navy Yard-Ballpark subway station, also includes the land upon which sits the St. Matthews Baptist Church at New Jersey and L (seen at right), which Donohoe has apparently acquired. As you can see in the rendering
, the building will sit right next to but will not contain the Metro station entrance (the way 55 M Street contains the west entrance at Half Street).
If they do intend to get underway next year, that brings the total of new residential units expected in the neighborhood over the next two years to nearly 1,900, with Twelve12
, River Parc
, and the Park Chelsea
already out of the ground and Yards/Parcel N
, 800 New Jersey
and now this Donohoe project in the lineup to start in 2014.
I think I might have to buy a new camera.
Progress and More Progress on 900-Plus Residential Units
Dec 15, 2013 7:40 PM
After not having a new high-rise residential project under construction in the neighborhood since spring 2009, it's sort of amazing to realize there are now three such buildings up out of the ground, with more than 900 new rental units in the pipeline for delivery within the next year to eighteen months. (And there could be another 650 units added to tally if both the Yards/Parcel N
and 800 New Jersey/Whole Foods
projects get going as expected in the coming months.)
The farthest along is the Twelve12
building at 4th and M, SE, at the Yards, which has its two residential towers topped out and its Harris Teeter space glassed in. Plus, it is also now seeing the glass being hung
on the Vida Fitness/retail area at 4th and Tingey:
It will have 218 units, and the first move-ins are expected to happen by mid-year. This project is also where Sweetgreen and TaKorean will be located.
Meanwhile, the Toll Brothers building dubbed River Parc
is racing right along, with five-plus of its 13 stories completed, helping to make the southwest corner of 1st and K look a teensy bit different than it did seven years ago:
This building will have 277 units, and is expected to begin leasing toward the end of 2014.
And up near the freeway, at New Jersey and I, the Park Chelsea
is moving along, though the vertical progress of this 433-unit building is a bit slower than its smaller brethren. But as of now neighborhood eyes are probably more fixed on the completed paving of the new block of I Street between 2nd and New Jersey, though when the street will actually open to the public is not being trumpeted. (Spring 2014? Late 2014? We shall see!)
I think that, of the three, the Park Chelsea will have the biggest impact on the neighborhood skyline, both from on the ground (as you can now start to see in the various vantage points in the project's expanded before-and-after archive
) as well as when looking into Near Southeast from the freeway. (And then it won't be too long until the Chelsea's sibling 800 New Jersey sneaks in just to its north and tweaks the views even further.). The downside is that a lot of views of the Capitol dome from Canal Park and Capitol Hill Tower are going to be lost to progress....
For more information/renderings for each project, and for more photos showing how these construction sites looked before work got underway, check out the Twelve12
, River Parc
, and Park Chelsea
project pages. And join in with me in looking forward to the days starting to get longer, so that I can stop having to deal with the rotten winter sun angle and shadows.
Tidbits: Whole Foods Dough, Blue Castle For Sale, Yards Doings
Dec 13, 2013 2:29 PM
* WC Smith has lined up $87 million in financing for its planned apartment building at 800 New Jersey Ave.
, better known as the home-to-be of Whole Foods. Construction is expected to start next year, just north of the currently climbing Park Chelsea
The party also celebrated the "groundbreaking" of the Yards's next project, the 325-unit residential building just east of the Foundry Lofts on Parcel N
, but until the heavy equipment shows up and starts digging up the existing parking lot on the site, let's just note that the actual work should be getting underway sometime soon. But in the meantime, you can gaze upon the latest rendering
of the project (this is looking toward the northwest, up 4th from Water Street).
UPDATE: I also should have mentioned that Forest City is now expecting an official mid-January move of its offices to the 2nd floor of the Lumber Shed (hence the visible work underway up there).
55 M Street Sold to Hines Global REIT
Dec 11, 2013 2:41 PM
It's been announced that 55 M Street
, the 265,000-square-foot office building at Half and M on top of the Navy Yard Metro station just north of Nationals Park, has been sold by Monument Realty (and its investment partners Lehman Brothers and McFarlane Partners) to Hines Global REIT
, for an as-yet undisclosed amount.
Open since 2009, 55 M has 89 percent of its space currently leased, with tenants including the District Department of Transportation and the Federal Aviation Administration. The ground-floor retail spaces remain empty except for Bank of America on the building's northeast corner, but perhaps now that the sale has been completed, some movement on the other spaces may be seen.
The building was to be the first phase of Monument's Half Street development
when construction began on it in 2007
, but the Great Economic Difficulties of the late 00's stopped the subsequent phases in their tracks, leaving only the large hole that was dug for them at the same time 55 M was being built. Monument still has on the boards its Half Street plans for a 200-room hotel and 350 units of residential, though with no announced timeline.
Four-Phase Residential Project Proposed for East M Street
Nov 6, 2013 9:01 AM
In another blast from the past, we've learned from WBJ
that the Cohen Companies have filed zoning paperwork for their proposed project at 1333 M Street SE, a mere 3 1/2 years since they last discussed the development of this three-acre triangular plot of land
east of the 11th Street Bridges near the Anacostia River.
However, it's no longer the 815,000-sq-ft office/hotel/retail project
that was unveiled in 2010 -- Cohen, developer of the Velocity Condos
at 1st and L, now is proposing a four-phase, three-building project
with 673 residential units and 10,370 square feet of retail use. WBJ quotes Eric Siegel of Cohen as saying "the office market is just not there" in DC, and that the company felt that "creating a sense of place with a residential community was a much better opportunity than just creating an office environment."
Currently the site is home to, well, not much. Temporary trailers and surface parking were installed as part of the 11th Street Bridges project, and this stretch of M is pretty ripped up now as part of DC Water's big dig. To the west of the site are the two buildings and large surface parking lots of Maritime Plaza, and south of Water Street is the stretch of waterfront uses known as Boathouse Row
. The invisible "intersection" of 13th and M
is probably known to passersby only because of the somewhat incongruous mini-traffic circle built there. The eastern end of the triangle is where Water Street meets M, which isn't exactly exciting either (though my photos
of that spot are from before DC Water started ripping it up). Directly to the north of the triangle are both the CSX train tracks and the stretch of road that is on its way to becoming Southeast Blvd
The first phase of the project
would be a 10-story, 218-unit building, viewed in the design as the first of two towers in a single building at 1333 M. A large open lawn area would be installed to the south of the building, at least until construction of the second tower, planned for Phase II, which would have 133 units in a nine-story building.
Together, the two buildings would have 7,200 square feet of retail and 112 parking spaces. A retail plaza would be on the south side of Tower B, and a ground-level pool would be built during the second phase between the two towers, as would a large "grand staircase" down to Water Street from the promenade along the southern edge of the property that is expected to be built during Phase I.
Phase III/Building 2 would be built on the west end of the triangle and would have 234 units in an 11-story building that would also contain 3,170 square feet of retail, and Phase IV/Building 3 would be a teensy nine-story 88-unit building on the eastern end of the site.
There would also eventually be a new street coming off the traffic circle on a portion of the south side of the site at 13th and M, named Virginia Avenue since it is on the footprint of the original avenue (which disappeared east of 11th at some point many years ago).
The zoning application describes the project as "a visionary mixed-use development that reactivates the Anacostia River and provides evocative public spaces giving a full life cycle to the previously underutilized site," intended to "celebrate the waterfront, by creating a dynamic promenade down to the river with a flexible retail plaza space where pedestrians, cyclists, retail users, residents and cultural events come together."
It may be worth noting that, should the Maritime Plaza folks ever build the final phases of that development, the river views across huge parking lots to the southwest of the Cohen site will probably be altered somewhat.
Someone will probably ask about the remediation issues for this site (which I mentioned back in 2010
). This is part of the old Washington Gas/Steuart Petroleum site, and it was previously discussed that soil approximately 11 feet below grade is contaminated. There is no mention in the new zoning filings about this, but I'm guessing it will be brought up at some point. UPDATE:
The magic of Twitter allows me to get word
that Cohen says the contamination has been cleaned.
I could go into all manner of additional detail about the plans, but with a project this big with a zoning PUD to go through I figure I have plenty of time to get to the nitty gritty. But don't let that stop anyone from hashing over the design, the location, the probability of completion, and more. (Meanwhile, compare it all to the 2010 office/hotel/retail plans, just for the fun of it
WMATA Looking for Chiller Plant Developers - Again
Nov 5, 2013 9:53 AM
The Post's CapBiz section reported yesterday
that "In an effort to take advantage of some of the boom in development near public transit, Metro launched a search
Monday for companies interested in building on properties the transit agency owns at five of its stations: Brookland, Navy Yard, Fort Totten, Grosvenor-Strathmore and Morgan Boulevard."
The Navy Yard-Ballpark land the transit agency is looking to develop is a bit to the north of the station's Half Street entrance, and is known as the Chiller Plant site on the southwest corner of Half and L
While this sounds like positive progress to those who are wanting to see that corner developed, I do invite readers to come with me on a trip through the JDLand archives
So, while it would be keen to see some movement on the 14,000-sq-ft site, it might be wise to not break out the backhoes just yet.
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