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Here's a brief wrap-up of Near Southeast-related items from last night's ANC 6D meeting (though the folks following my Twitter feed got some pithy tidbits in real time):
* JPI was there requesting support for a public space permit to put up a sign at 909 New Jersey. If you've been thinking that this apartment building looks pretty far along, you're correct: the JPI rep said that they're looking to deliver the first units in February. The building has 6,000 square feet of ground-floor retail space, of which 4,000 is expected to be leased to restaurants. The discussion about the sign permit devolved into concerns about the main staircase on New Jersey Avenue splitting up the public space, which DDOT's public space committee has already approved but which ANC members weren't sure they'd ever seen. The vote on the sign permit request was 4-0-2 in favor of asking DDOT to postpone the decision on the sign as a protest against the sign and NJ Ave public space permits not having been done together.
* EYA and the DC Housing Authority presented their request for ANC support for some new brick "screens" on certain public housing units at Capitol Quarter that won't have alley access and so will need to have their trash and recycling cans placed by the buildings' fronts. There are nine corner buildings in Capitol Quarter with 27 public housing units that will need these screens, though there are also corner buildings at CQ that are not public housing, and there are additional public housing units that are not in these corner buildings. But the ANC felt that these trash screens would make the affected units easily identified as public housing, which would negate what commissioners described as the "concept of Hope VI" where you're not supposed to be able to "tell the difference" in market-rate and public-housing units from the outside. There were also concerns about units with windows above the trash enclosures (i.e., the smell and also having to look out at the trash bins). The rep from DCHA asked the ANC to table the request for support rather than oppose it (so that EYA and DCHA could come back with some revised designs), but the ANC voted 5-0 to oppose the request anyway.
Both these public space permits are on Thursday's agenda of the city's Public Space Committee.
There was also to be a discussion of the stadium Traffic Operations and Parking Plan, but it got moved to late in the agenda, and it sounded like it was going to be just in terms of the impact on Southwest, so I will admit that I didn't stick around.
 

* The ANC 6D agenda for its meeting on Monday Oct. 20 has been sent around (though not yet posted online). There will be a discussion of the Ballpark Traffic Operations and Parking Plan as it relates to Southwest, plus public space requests for building signage at 909 New Jersey and "Brick Walls for Trash Enclosures" at Capitol Quarter. (These are also on the Oct. 23 agenda of the city's Public Space Commitee.)
* The short list for a design/build team to reconstruct the 11th Street Bridges is out--Shirley Design-Build LLC, Skansa/Facchina, Archer Western Contractors LLC, Perini/Parsons Joint Venture, and KCA Constructors Joint Venture. According to the procurement schedule, a draft RFP should already be out (haven't found it online), and final RFP should be issued by the end of the year, with a contract signed with the vendor by June 1, 2009.
* Metro announced yesterday that 53 percent of baseball game attendees this year arrived at Nationals Park via Metrorail. That's 1.8 million bodies, averaging 23,000 people entering and exiting the Navy Yard station at the 80 home games in 2008. (It apparently doesn't count people who took the bus or walked down from Capitol South.) In the last two years at RFK, only 38 percent of attendees took the subway. Marc Fisher has some thoughts on it all (including some questions on Metro's math).
 

Although the leasing office has been open for a few weeks now, I only just visited Onyx on First this past weekend. They're still putting on the finishing touches (their certificate of occupancy came through not too long ago), so I was only able to see the main floor and one of the model units, but at least now I do finally have photos from the inside of the building (scroll down if the link doesn't jump you down the page). I also got a couple shots from the roof, but things aren't quite completed up there, so I didn't get a photo of the pool. And since they're now open, I've moved Onyx to "completed" status.
The Axiom apartment building at 100 I has been open for a little while, but I hadn't gotten myself in there since a pre-occupancy construction-dust tour back in June. That has now been rectified, and I've posted photos of the common areas and one of the model units. (Didn't get back to the roof, though.) You can also see my interior photos from sibling Jefferson/70 I, to see the warehouse vs. modern differences in the designs.
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More posts: 70/100 I, jpi, Onyx, Square 743N
 

I took a few quick pictures on First Street and Fourth Street on Saturday, to capture 909 New Jersey and Capitol Quarter in the late-afternoon sun--you can see all of them with their befores here.
I also finally got to some other shots to fill in two glaring holes in my portfolio, but it might be a couple of days until I get those posted. Until then, you'll just have to guess.
 

From today's print edition of the Washington Business Journal (subscribers only): "In response to the burgeoning credit crisis, local multifamily developer JPI East has reduced its development and production capacity, laying off half its development divisions. The company would not say how many people were involved, but insiders say it was fewer than 10."
As for JPI's projects in Near Southeast, including the almost-completed 70 and 100 I, the under-construction 909 New Jersey, and the in-development 23 I? "The company still has 10 deals under construction in the region, including three luxury apartment projects in the Capitol Riverfront district near Nationals Park. All three have the debt and equity to go forward, [JPI East's president] says." It might be worth noting, however, that the previously announced September 2008 start date for 23 I has come and gone; and the Wendy's building is still standing, and I haven't so far seen any raze permits coming through the pipeline for it.
 

Before the storm clouds arrived yesterday (literally and figuratively), I got out and took an incomplete smattering of pictures along Second, New Jersey, First, Cushing, and Half. (Use those links to see all the before-and-nows of these latest shots.) These new photos are mainly of 909 New Jersey, Velocity, 55 M, the empty skyline where 1015 Half is just about to reach ground level, and the final "after" photos from the demolition of the Merritt Cab building at First and K on Square 696. The sun disappeared before I could get over to Capitol Quarter, so new photos from there will have to wait a few days, and since the afternoon remained cloudy (and busy), I didn't take an afternoon batch (i.e., no photos looking east).
And, if you haven't wandered through them for a while, the gallery of my favorite before-and-afters is a striking walk through the past few years, as the memories of the old Near Southeast start to get just a wee bit hazy.
 

The facings and brick continue to go up at 909 New Jersey (and there's even a window or two). I took a pretty complete set of the close-up photos, some of which you can see on the project page; for more, and to see the building from farther away (to get an idea of how prominent it is these days in the neighborhood's ever-changing skyline), check the Expanded Project Archive.
I also got updated shots of the northwestern part of Near Southeast from one of the more popular vantage points, up on the Southeast Freeway approaching South Capitol Street. The before-and-afters (especially the grainy one from September 2000) are a good reminder of how much has happened, and how fast. And with 1015 Half's crane now front and center, we know that this view will be changing (again!) within a few months. (And this is where I need to remind that I take these freeway photos from a passenger seat at 55 mph, not on foot or behind the wheel. Duh!)
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More posts: 909 New Jersey, jpi
 

A few weeks ago I was told that the Onyx on First apartment building would probably be opening its first three floors in early August, and judging by the newly installed sidewalk along First Street and a peek into the lobby, it doesn't appear to be far off. The building will have approximately 260 units, and began construction in fall 2006. On my Onyx project page, you can see updated photos, along with a few new images of the buildings that preceded Onyx on this site.
Two blocks to the north, 909 New Jersey speeds along, with its distinctive roofline now visible from many locations around the neighborhood, as you can see both on the project page and in the Expanded 909 Photo Gallery. (What do we call this roof thing? The crow's nest? The bow?) The photos also show that brick is now being added to the First Street side of the building. This 237-unit rental building with ground-floor retail space will be the third of JPI's four "Capitol Yards" residential developments, and is expected to be completed next year.
(And while you look at all the latest photos, be sure to take a moment to thank the supreme being of your choice for bestowing upon us Sunday's gorgeous weather and severe clear blue sky, which is such a rarity given DC's normally haze-filled Augusts.)
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More posts: 909 New Jersey, jpi, Onyx, Square 743N
 

Not sure exactly when this happened, but sometime within the past few days the Wendy's on I Street between South Capitol and Half streets, SE, has finally closed down, after being rumored to be coming Any Minute Now since May. JPI has announced plans for its fourth Capitol Yards residential building on the site, a 420-unit "loft-style" building called 23 Eye that would also have ground-floor retail. Previous statements from JPI had pegged the start of 23 I's construction this fall--I haven't heard whether that's still the plan.
 

An e-mail went out late yesterday announcing that Axiom at Capitol Yards (better known around these parts as 100 I Street) is now open for business, almost exactly one month after older sibling Jefferson/70 I went live. Axiom, with about 246 units, has a more modern design in comparison to Jefferson's "warehouse/industrial" look, but has many of the same amenities, such as a roof pool, fitness center, "resident pub," etc. (I've got interior photos from about two months ago, which I hope to get updated soon--I almost took a photo yesterday afternoon of the main entry that now has an "Axiom" sign above it, but I thought to myself, "Oh, I'll just wait until it's officially open." Oops.)
The official web site is at AxiomCapitolYards.com, and leasing has been underway for a few months. And, like all younger siblings, Axiom's debut into the world will probably be less of an event, with fewer announcements, parties, photos, home movies, birthday presents, etc. (Do I sound bitter?)
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Reader AW was nice enough to pass along news of a fence banner along Half Street, SE, just south of 70 I that is shouting "1st Community in DC to Offer Verizon FIOS!" (This is the high-speed fiber optic TV/internet service that is available throughout the 'burbs.) I went to verizonfios.com, and did some address searching via the Check Availability page, and got positive results for 70 I, 100 I, and 1000 New Jersey (Capitol Hill Tower). However, if you click one of the addresses and continue along, you're then told that FIOS TV isn't yet available for that address, but FIOS high-speed Internet is. (As I posted back in June, JPI has been marketing 70 and 100 I as "pre-wired" for FIOS.)
UPDATE: Read this entry's comments to see that, not surprisingly, "First Community to Offer FIOS" isn't quite what it seems just yet. But if there's any neighborhood in the city where the infrastructure work could already have been done to get fiber in place, it'd be the one that's being entirely rebuilt from scratch....
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More posts: Capitol Hill Tower, jpi
 

The fine folks working the Wendy's drive-through window this evening at South Capitol and I tell me that their closing date is now the end of July. At this point (this is the third date I've now heard, starting with end-of-May, then end-of-June), I'm just going to not say anything more about it until I see locks on the doors. The property is part of the footprint for JPI's fourth Capitol Yards apartment building, 23 I at Capitol Yards, which JPI has said would be starting constuction this fall. We shall see....
 

The "Jefferson at Capitol Yards Block Party" was held Saturday afternoon, and I used it as an opportunity to get inside of this now-opened apartment building at 70 I Street to update the not-quite-finished-yet interior photos I originally posted back in May. You can see the new batch here, which includes lots of photos of the resident pub, the other amenities, two of the models, and of course the views from the roof. For now, the first three floors are available for leasing; the rest will open in phases over the next few months, with the building expected to be completed this fall.
I also added a few of the roof views to my Overhead Photos Archive, which you can compare with the ones I took at 70 I a month ago to see the progress in four weeks at 909 New Jersey, Velocity, and even the hole in the ground that will become 1015 Half Street.
Hopefully in a few weeks I'll be able to do the same thing for sibling 100 I when they open its public spaces and models.
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From JPI, in a press release announcing the official opening of the Jefferson at Capitol Yards (always known here as 70 I Street), an invitation to a "free block party for prospective residents on Saturday, June 28th, from 4:00 p.m. until game time at the nearby Washington Nationals ballpark. Visitors will enjoy barbeque, beverages, and tours of newly opened model apartments and amenity spaces."
While chowing down you can learn about the "resort-style swimming pool, rooftop deck, high-tech business center with private workstations and Internet access, executive conference center, movie theater with stadium seating, available bicycle storage and personal storage space, and 24-hour fitness center with cardio equipment, individual TVs, circuit training and free weights" as well as "a large pub room with plasma TVs, billiards, shuffleboard, foosball, darts, poker, Ipod docking station, and video gaming stations."
And all apartments are pre-wired for Verizon FIOS, easing the loading of all those resource-intensive JDLand photo pages, including my photos from a few weeks ago of the then-not-quite-finished interiors of Jefferson and Axiom next door.
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Three weeks is way too long to go between updates when a building skeleton is on its way up, so seeing 909 New Jersey now starting its 11th story is a bit of a shock. The latest photos on the project page capture the building from all angles (and show that the facing work is already starting on the lower floors), and the Expanded Gallery includes photos from farther away showing the impact 909's rise is having on the Near Southeast skyline. This 237-unit rental building will have 6,000 square feet of ground-floor retail space, and is expected to be completed next year.
And, on the pages for both 909 NJ page and its siblings 70 and 100 I, I've now added a few more "old" photos of the lots before they were bought and cleared. I've been so focused on matching before-and-afters, which is simplest when done standing at intersections, that I've forgotten how many mid-block photos I used to take, especially waaaaaaaaay back during 2003 and 2004 (heh). As always, let the icon be your guide for the latest additions to the project pages, and use the Click to see all available photos of this location. icon wherever you see it to view all photos in the archive from a certain vantage point.
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Taking a break from my break to pass along word from JPI that, as of today, the first three floors and the clubhouse of the 70 I Street/Jefferson at Capitol Yards apartment building are complete and officially open for business, so visitors can stop by and see the spaces for themselves. They'll be working on the rest of the building with plans to have it completed in the fall; its official web site is at JeffersonCapitolYards.com. Sibling 100 I/Axiom will be following suit in the next month or so.
(PS: Looks like the jdland.com server has been taking some vacation time itself today--hopefully it'll be mended soon.)
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It's almost hard to believe that in 2001 there were only two buildings taller than five stories in Near Southeast; gazing now across the neighborhood from the vantage point of the Southeast Freeway gives off a decidely different vibe, with 14 taller-than-five-stories buildings completed or under construction. (And there's a baseball stadium, too.)
You can see the changes via the Photo Archive, where I've just added updated photos from the freeway at South Capitol Street that you can browse by looking at just the oldest and newest shoots or by including all the photos in between. And, in honor of 909 New Jersey now being visible from the freeway, I've added photos starting in late 2005 of the view down New Jersey Avenue while zooming east on the freeway at [redacted] mph.
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More posts: 909 New Jersey, jpi
 

* The Post's DC Wire blog is reporting that at 5 pm today DCRA will be having a lottery for the 28 street vending spots near Nationals Park. "Winners will enjoy their spots for one month, starting on June 1. Then the process starts all over again with a lottery on the last Tuesday of each month until the baseball season ends." (Vendors grumbling about neon-green On the Fly's vending on Half Street have found out that the eco-vendor is actually on private property.)
* From the Examiner: David Catania gets back into the baseball carping business, saying the city should get its money back from the consultants who predicted in 2005 that the Nats would average 39,000 fans in the first year at Nationals Park, since there's only been an average of 29,000 fans during the first third of the season. Catania says "that ERA may have seriously overestimated ticket sales, which represents a major portion of stadium-related revenues." However, DC CEO Natwar Gandhi has replied that "the ballpark bonds are structured in such a way "that a significant drop in attendance would not hinder our ability to pay debt service" and that "in a worst-case scenario, total attendance at the new stadium could drop to approximately 10,000 people per game without affecting debt-service payments." The Examiner also says: "Ticket prices at the new ballpark are 20 percent higher than the consultant predicted, Gandhi said, which will drastically reduce the effect of reduced attendance." I wonder if the consultants factored in cold and miserable April weather? The Post's DC Wire has more on this.
* The Nats announced earlier this year that tours of the ballpark are available on non-gamedays; yesterday they sent out word that proceeds from those tours will benefit the team's Dream Foundation, which currently has a number of initiatives underway, including the Neighborhood Initiative that's providing three years of funding to the Earth Conservation Corps. Info about the tours is available here.
* My Ballpark and Beyond column in today's District Extra is short and sweet, with blurbs on the RiverFront/Florida Rock zoning approval and the almost-arrival of 700 new residential units at 70 and 100 I Street.
* Also in the District Extra is a big piece on whether the diversity of the Nats' roster, "combined with their state-of-the-art stadium, will be enough to attract young blacks and Latinos to the game in the District."
* DC United wants the city to pay $225 million for its Poplar Point stadium, which the Post says is "far more than some city leaders say they would support" and that "even the amount officials have considered, $150 million, has raised some concern with D.C. Chief Financial Officer Natwar M. Gandhi, whose analysis has concluded such a deal could push the government above a Wall Street debt ceiling that he recommended last year." In the meantime, Marc Fisher thinks it's all a bad idea.
 

Watching from ground level as new buildings pop up is all well and good--but when they are completed, it also means a new vantage point for overhead views of the neighborhood (as long as I can convince the owners to indulge a pesky camera-toting neighborhood blogger). So, thanks to the folks at JPI, I'm now able to add 70 I and 100 I to the Overhead Photo Gallery, joining existing perches on top of 1000 New Jersey, 20 M, and various spots at the ballpark. Even though it wasn't a brilliantly sunny day when I visited, I still got some good photos of the current state of Near Southeast (such as 100 I's southward view seen above, showing the renovated First Street, Onyx, 100 M, Velocity, Nationals Park, and 20 M). In these new 70 I and 100 I overhead galleries, you'll also see 909 New Jersey, the hole being dug for 1015 Half, and even some views east toward 225 Virginia and west toward Southwest. Enjoy. (And, if you want to see the photos I took *inside* 70 and 100 I this week, check out the project page.)
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More posts: 70/100 I, jpi
 

The folks at JPI were kind enough to take me on a walk-through today of their getting-close-to-opening Jefferson and Axiom apartment buildings (better known as 70 and 100 I Street). Jefferson, with its warehouse/industrial feel, is about a month away from opening its shared spaces and first few floors of apartments, with all 12 stories expected to be open to tenants by late fall; Axiom will see its first units open in July, and also is expected to be completed before the end of the year. Together, the two buildings total nearly 700 apartments, and will be the first rental units to open in Near Southeast.
My interior photos of Jefferson/70 I give you a glimpse of the huge "sports pub", the interior courtyard, the other shared spaces, and the roof deck and pool, with hints of the amazing views of the city from up on high. (Don't worry, I'll be adding lots of big images to my Overhead Photos Gallery soon.)
Since Axiom/100 I is not quite as far along in its construction, the interior photos don't hint as much at the final look-and-feel of the shared spaces; but I actually got more photos inside the units in 100 I. And it's on 100 I's roof deck that I got the above photo.
The temporary rental office in the trailer at Half and I is open for business. At Jefferson, rents start at about $1,600 for a studio, $1,855 for a 1-bedroom ($2,225 for a 1 br/den), $2,555 for a 2-bedroom, and a $3,320 for a 3-bedroom; Axiom's prices are a little higher. For both buildings, a single parking space is $200 per month, or $275 a month for a tandem space. And pets are allowed, but there are size and breed restrictions, and additional fees. There are also some special deals being offered on lease terms.
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