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More on Monument's Lehman Entanglements
Sep 22, 2008 11:02 AM
Today's Post has a piece that gives more details on how Monument Realty has been tied to Lehman Brothers over the years, and how that might impact Monument's Half Street project: "In addition to an equity stake in Monument's Half Street project with San Francisco-based MacFarlane Partners, Lehman holds a $12 million secondary loan and Chicago-based Corus Bank holds the $72 million construction loan on the first phase of that development, a nine-story office building rising above the Navy Yard Metro stop. The rest of the project has not secured outside financing. [...] Monument began searching for another investor to buy out Lehman's positions soon after the credit markets began to tighten. Some bids were presented earlier this year, two sources familiar with the negotiations said, but Lehman rejected them as too low."
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More posts: Monument/Half St.

Movement on South End of Monument Half Street? (UPDATED)
Sep 17, 2008 1:36 AM
I think I Twittered a few days back about a couple of Monument Realty-requested building permits recently approved by the city for construction of a three-story underground garage in the 1200 block of Half Street. I wasn't sure whether this was just Monument getting its bureaucratic ducks in a row, or if it's an indication of movement on the south end of Monument's Half Street project, where a hotel and 340 units of residential are slated to be built just past the getting-close-to-completed 55 M office building.
Then, a few correspondents wrote in today to mention seeing the delivery of a construction trailer nearby to the site, along with a new "Bovis Lend Lease" sign hung on the fence at Half and N. Does this mean construction is about to commence? I've sent a message to Monument, but haven't heard back yet. In the meantime, there's always the Half Street Cam to keep an eye on possible action in that big hole in the ground.
A few folks have also written in about today's WBJ piece on the impact of Lehman Brothers's demise on various projects in the DC area, which mentions that Lehman holds an interest in Monument's Half Street project. This starts to get way above my pay grade, but there are some "Certificate of Satisfaction" land records from the mid-August where Monument appears to have paid off two "purchase money deed of trusts" held by Lehman totaling a little more than $23 million for lots on the east side of Half Street between M and N. (It then did the same a few weeks later for its property on the northwest corner of Half and N, which it then sold to Akridge.) So, perhaps Monument has disentangled itself from Lehman on these properties? (Like I said, this is totally out of my comfort zone, so if anyone wants to explain further or correct me, please drop me a line.)
As always, we shall see....
UPDATED, 9/17: Sometimes, the tea leaves aren't quite saying what they seem to be. Monument tells me that while they are "hoping" to begin the hotel/residential project by the end of the year, the movement seen at Half and N over the past few days is for work related to the office building and other improvements (not defined) on Half Street (perhaps the public space stuff I've been writing about).
Comments (2)
More posts: Akridge/Half St., Development News, Monument/Half St.

ANC 6D Meeting Tonight; Monument Half Street Withdraws Public Space Approval Request
Sep 15, 2008 11:55 AM
* Tonight is ANC 6D's monthly meeting. Alas, no agenda has been released yet, so I can't tell you what might be happening. (And I can't go, so I won't be able to tell you what happened.)
* We'll have to wait a little longer to find out what exactly was meant by that "146 fountains" part of the public space improvement application by Monument for 1200 Half Street (aka 55 M) that I posted a few weeks back--they've asked for a postponement and are no longer on the Sept. 25 Public Space Committee agenda. The draft agenda had said: "Application by M.R./BR Residential #1A, LLC for installing various fixtures in public space ( 23-benches, 9 trash containers, 32 lights, 146 fountains, 8 bollards, 18 bike rack all located around Half Street in public space."
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More posts: ANC News, Monument/Half St.

Monument/Half Street Public Space Improvements; Akridge Press Release on Bus Garage Acquisition
Sep 3, 2008 11:34 AM
On the agenda for the Sept. 25 meeting of the city's Public Space Committee: an application by Monument Realty for 1200 Half Street (better known here as 55 M) to install various fixtures in public space around Half Street, described as 23 benches, 9 trash containers, 32 lights, 146 fountains, 8 bollards, and 18 bike racks. (UPDATE: I don't know what the deal is with "146 fountains"--that's what was in the meeting agenda.)
And, on the other side of Half Street, Akridge celebrates its closing on the Southeastern Bus Garage site (mentioned last week) with a press release. According to the Washington Business Journal, construction could begin on the planned 700,000-square-foot mixed-use project in 2010.
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More posts: Akridge/Half St., Development News, Monument/Half St., staddis

Morning Roundup: Office Space Market, Gun Stores, Live Online Chat about Drag Queens
Aug 11, 2008 10:08 AM
* Monday's Post has a couple of pieces on the state of the area's commercial real estate market, and looks specifically at how NoMa doesn't have tenants racing in despite the high-profile acquisitions of NPR and the Justice Department. It also compares NoMa to Near Southeast, and quotes Russell Hines of Monument Realty as saying that "although the slow economy has made leasing the building more complicated, the company had seen interest from some associations and other private companies looking to escape high rents downtown." Alas, the piece mentions "50 M" as Monument's 275,000-sq-ft office building scheduled for completion next year when it means 55 M. (50 M is Monument's project, too--a proposed 130,000-sq-ft office building on the old Sunoco station site, but they are looking for tenants before starting construction there.)
* A Sunday Examiner piece looks at the temporary zoning rules covering where gun stores can be located in DC: "Firearms dealers who apply for a D.C. location will be largely restricted to high density commercial areas downtown and kept at least two football fields away from where people live, play and pray, according to emergency rules now in place." Included in the allowed zones are C-3-C areas, which means that the area of Near Southeast between South Capitol, Second, M, and the freeway (my "North of M" area) is covered. (See the map on page 8 of the OP report for exact boundaries.) Other restrictions: "All applicants, under the new rules, must appear before the Board of Zoning Adjustments to obtain a special zoning exception. Retail stores will be limited to the downtown area, generally between Massachusetts and Pennsylvania avenues Northwest, in addition to about 25 square blocks between Independence Avenue and M Street in Southwest. No dealer will be allowed within 600 feet of a residence, school, library, church or playground." Of course, the gun stores would have to be able to afford the rents in the pricey new buildings going up, since there aren't too many other places left in the neighborhood.
* Late notice (unless you're subscribed to my Twitter feed, in which case you heard about this yesterday), but there's a Live Online chat today at noon with the author of the Post magazine's piece on the drag queens of Near Southeast, and the man known as "Mame Dennis" who was the focal point of the article will be participating, too.
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More posts: 50m, mnorth, Monument/Half St., Nationals Park, zoning

Capper Foundations, Bike Valet, More New Photos
Aug 5, 2008 1:20 PM
* The foundations are rising at Capitol Quarter on the south side of L Street between Fourth and Fifth. Next obsessive milestone to watch out for: delivery of lots of lumber!
* Speaking of foundations, I peeked into the big hole at 1015 Half Street on Sunday and saw that they appear to have reached bottom--there's concrete poured on the northern portion.
* In addition to the other photos I've pointed you to in the past couple days, I've posted updated shots of Velocity and 55 M.
* The August issue of the Hill Rag has an interesting little piece on the bike valet service at the ballpark.
* The annual National Night Out is tonight--the closest event is at 13th and Potomac, starting at 6:30 pm. See Tommy Wells's web site for details.
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More posts: Capitol Quarter, Monument/Half St., Square 699n

Monument/WMATA Bus Garage Settlement Coming?
Jun 25, 2008 4:56 PM
From WBJ (h/t to reader W), hints that a settlement may be close at hand between Monument Realty and Metro over the lawsuit Monument filed in October after WMATA awarded the sale of the Southeastern Bus Garage at Half and M to Akridge. This is the third Metro monthly board meeting in a row that has "Monument Legal Issues" on the agenda for an executive session, but maybe this time something will actually come out of it.
Back in February a judge granted an injunction to prevent WMATA from continuing with the planned $69.5 million sale of the garage to Akridge, saying that Monument "demonstrated a likelihood of success on the merits of their claim that they were substantially prejudiced when WMATA considered Akridge's nonresponsive bid and participated in improper ex parte discussions with Akridge."
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More posts: Akridge/Half St., Development News, Metro/WMATA, Monument/Half St.

Late Night Roundup, and Some Wondering
Jun 24, 2008 12:45 AM
* Sorry I missed this until now: the Post reported that on Saturday evening "[a] motorcycle was headed west on M Street SE about 6:30 p.m. when a car traveling south on Seventh Street began to turn onto M Street. The car and motorcycle collided, and the motorcyclist was fatally injured, police said."
* The Post's Grounds Crew blog has only now discovered that there's a Five Guys just around the corner from the Navy Yard subway station east entrance (on Second Street north of M, if you haven't discovered it yet, either).
* The PSA 105 mailing list announced yesterday that they are having a "Summer of Safety Ice Cream Social" at Capitol Hill Tower "to show unity with the citizens of Capitol Hill and the Metropolitan Police Department by sharing some nice and cool ice cream while sharing information." The message said that the social is from 2 to 5 pm on June 25. A Wednesday afternoon? I wrote asking for confirmation, but haven't heard back. Anyone out there with the {ahem} scoop?
* Washington City Paper and WBJ both note layoffs at MacFarlane Partners through the prism of how it might affect the drive to put a soccer stadium at Poplar Point; I see the news and wonder about the capital that MacFarlane is supposed to be investing in both The Yards and Monument Realty's Half Street.
* Is the report in the July Southwester that Monument Realty and the Corcoran Gallery have received zoning approval to delay to 2015 (from 2011) their planned redevelopment of the the Randall School site at Half and I SW something to wonder about, too?
* And, while I'm heading off the reservation with all of this wondering, did anyone else read this Post story on fuel prices causing problems for school districts' transportation budgets and ponder whether buses would have to drive farther to and from their daily routes from a parking lot at DC Village as compared to one at Second and M, SE?
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More on Neal/GVA Adventis Deal; Monument Impact?
Jun 13, 2008 3:22 PM
From today's print edition of the Washington Business Journal (subscribers only): "Since announcing his takeover of GVA Advantis, Monument Realty co-founder Jeffrey Neal has remained mum about his future at Monument, one of the region's largest developers. [...] [P]rivately, several insiders said it is also an indication that Neal is parting ways with Monument, the 50-person company he formed with business partner Michael Darby in 1998. [...] For almost three months, Monument's equity partner in 15 transactions, Lehman Bros., has been seeking to sell its interest in the Monument projects it has backed, according to sources close to the deal. Lehman announced on June 9 it expects to lose $2.8 billion in its second fiscal quarter, its first loss since going public in 1994. Since April, Lehman has shed some $130 billion in assets to raise capital and to reduce its exposure to mortgages and loans used to finance leveraged buyouts, according to The New York Times. Lehman has invested about $620 million in Monument projects, according to Monument's Web site, including The Chase at Bethesda, a failed condo conversion. The Chase partnership's loan was 'transferred to special servicing on Feb. 4, due to maturity default,' according to Fitch Ratings." The article doesn't specifically mention any of Monument's Ballpark District projects.
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More posts: Monument/Half St.

Monument's Neal Becomes Chairman of GVA Advantis
Jun 9, 2008 12:46 PM
With interest high in Monument Realty's Half Street developments (and with recent speculation in WBJ as to Monument's financing situation), I'll pass along this portion of a press release I just received:
"GVA Advantis, a full-service real estate services company specializing in development, construction, property management and brokerage needs, announced today that it has completed a recapitalization with a private equity group based in Washington, DC, and controlled by Jeffrey T. Neal. Neal's firm will have controlling interest in GVA Advantis; providing equity, leadership, and strategic vision for the company. [...] Neal's private equity group is comprised of individual investors with specific real estate and other industry experience and expertise that will be instrumental to Advantis's future. The group was assembled to assist senior management with setting the strategic direction and leadership of the company. The most significant change will occur in the culture of delivering a full line of services. GVA Advantis will be able to take advantage of the intellectual capital within the company, as well as Neal's and his investors' diverse expertise, and strengthen its service and leadership to their clients. Immediate steps will be taken to size the company for growth within the markets already served by the company, as well as other markets in the United States. In addition, the headquarters of GVA Advantis will move from Atlanta to Washington, DC."
Neal is now GVA Advantis's newly appointed Chairman; I'm told that he remains a principal at Monument Realty and "intends to remain active" in Monument's business. Will update if there are news stories with additional information.
UPDATE, Minutes Later: WBJ says: "Neal declined to comment on the deal or on his future with Monument. He did say it's unlikely that GVA Advantis will merge into Monument."
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More posts: Monument/Half St.

Harry's to Ballpark? And Monument Responds to WBJ
Jun 6, 2008 2:00 PM
Two articles from today's Washington Business Journal (online for subscribers only at this point):
* Arlington-based Harry's Tap Room has signed a partnership deal with concessionaire Centerplate that could include a plan to put a Harry's in at the ballpark where the Red Porch currently is. There could also eventually be Harry's outlets at FedEx Field and the DC Convention Center, both locations where Centerplate provides the concessions.
* After last week's piece that detailed what WBJ described as the "pinch" that Monument Realty is feeling in the current real estate climate, Monument principal Michael Darby has penned a WBJ Guest Comment, rebutting many of the points made in the original article. As for Monument's Half Street projects, where the southern part of the block has a deep hole where the hotel and residential offerings are planned, Darby writes: "We have not had trouble finding construction financing for the residential building in the first phase at our Half Street project. We could not start construction until we received construction pricing after the building design was completed. We received prices from three prominent Washington contractors last week. These prices will be incorporated into our financing package and sent to lenders. Once we agree to terms and complete the loan documentation, we can begin construction."
(This would be a good place for my mea culpa that I've not yet gotten around to writing a summary of last week's council hearing about the alley closing Monument is requesting for the BP Amoco site at South Capitol and N. I'm trying to pace myself.)
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More posts: Monument/Half St., Retail, Nationals Park

Monument Realty's Financing Problems (No Money Yet for Half Street Residential)
May 23, 2008 9:13 AM
From today's print edition of the Washington Business Journal: "With two failed condominium projects seeking apartment investors, incomplete financing at two major D.C. projects and at least one empty office building, Monument Realty is feeling the pinch from today's constricting real estate economy. [...] And, contrary to industry speculation, Monument is not for sale, [Monument co-founder Jeffrey] Neal said. In the coming weeks the company hopes to nail down financing for two ongoing projects -- the residential portion of its Half Street project and The Watergate Hotel -- and finalize negotiations to sell two residential projects, he said."
As for the status of Half Street, where the 55 M Street office building is topped out and a hole is dug awaiting the start of a planned 200-room hotel and 340 residential units: "Monument recently secured $72 million in construction financing for the office portion of Half Street, along with an undisclosed sum for the hotel piece. The development company is still in the hunt for financing for its planned 340 residential units, Neal said. Once that is in place, the residential and hotel portions 'will come out of the ground this summer,' he said."
The article, which has a lot of detail on the difficulties Monument is facing on its other projects, also mentions that the litigation between Monument and WMATA over the sale of the Southeastern Bus Garage "has been put on hold while the parties mediate their dispute."
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More posts: Metro/WMATA, Monument/Half St.

Metro Board Talking About Monument Suit Again; Chiller Site May Get Developer in June
May 20, 2008 9:25 AM
Just like last month, the agenda for the WMATA board of directors meetings this Thursday includes an executive session, and in that executive session is the agenda item "Legal Issues - Monument vs. WMATA." For those of you just joining us, this lawsuit is a result of the bidding process for the Southeastern Bus Garage at Half and M that awarded the site to Akridge for $69 million--Monument argued that they were supposed to have first dibs on the site after being named "master developer" by the city. A judge awarded a preliminary injunction on the sale in February, saying that Monument has "demonstrated a likelihood of success on the merits of their claim that they were substantially prejudiced when WMATA considered Akridge's nonresponsive bid and participated in improper ex parte discussions with Akridge." I never heard about anything coming out of last month's board executive session when this was supposed to be discussed; perhaps there will be some action needing to be taken this time outside of executive session to give us a hint.
There's nothing else of Near Southeast-interest in the other WMATA board meetings on Thursday, but the Subsequent Agenda for the Planning, Development and Real Estate Committee says that its June 26 meeting will include an action item for approving the term sheet on the Navy Yard Chiller Site at Half and L. A joint development solicitation for this 14,100-sq-ft site was released back in September of 2006. A "developer selection" was supposed to be on the board's agenda back in January, but then disappeared; we'll see if this June item actually holds. The 2006 solicitation described WMATA as "looking for innovative plans . . . that will yield quality developments for the local communities, increase transit ridership, enhance the local tax base and provide a stream of revenue to WMATA for capital needs." Proposals were also supposed to follow the principles of "transit-oriented development" -- "providing safe, walkable, mixed-use communities that emphasize transit connections and reduce auto dependency." While doing all that, the site's developer would still have to replace the chiller operations either on site or somewhere close to the Navy Yard station.

New Photos from On Top of 20 M
May 9, 2008 2:01 PM
Since it's such a rotten day, I'll go back to when the sun was shining (Tuesday), and give you my first-ever photos from the roof of 20 M Street. (I've taken a few photos from inside the 10th floor going back to April of last year, but from the roof I don't have deal with the pesky glass reflections.) Here are these new photos matched with the oldest ones from the same angle, so you can compare 13 months' worth of changes easily; you can also look at all the photos if you want to watch the progression of changes. There's views to the north (above), showing the digging now underway at 1015 Half Street along with the construction progress at 70/100 I, 909 New Jersey, and Velocity (plus the site-clearing at 23 I). To the south is the increasingly-shiny 55 M, as well as the ballpark, of course. I also tossed in some photos toward the west, showing the skyline of Southwest.

Now, About that Retail..... (A Space Survey)
May 2, 2008 10:09 AM
With the ballpark now humming along like it's been here forever (Tom Boswell has a litany of good things to say in today's Post) , interest is starting to turn toward what sort of retail/restaurant options are going to come to the neighborhood, and when. For your Friday time-killing pleasure, I've tossed together a quick a survey of what's either available now or will be coming within the next two years. (I'm not including already existing retail; I'm just looking at where new stuff could arrive.) As of now, I've seen no announcements of tenants for any of these spaces, but maybe if residents, workers, and ballpark fans clap their hands and wish real hard....
* 20 M - Completed in March of 2007, its 11,000 sq-ft of ground-floor retail space would seem to be an enticing location (just across the street from the Navy Yard subway station's ballpark exit), but so far there's been no takers. "Coming soon" signs that were in the windows last year for Wachovia and Kinko's are now gone.
* Capitol Hill Tower - A 7,000-sq-ft restaurant space in the ground floor of this co-op building has been advertised ever since the building opened in 2006, but no takers so far.
* 100 M - The 240,000-square-foot office building at First and M is scheduled to be completed later this year, and they're offering 8,500 sq ft of "corner restaurant/retail space" with "great ceiling heights, storefront and outdoor seating." (There's no ground-floor retail planned for Onyx on First in the same block.)
* 55 M - The first part of Monument's Half Street project is this 275,000-sq-ft office building now under construction at Half and M (it's the building on top of the subway station entrance). It has over 10,000 sq ft of retail spaces on Half, M, and Cushing, and should be completed by mid-2009. (See retail spaces 1 through 4 on this page at the official web site.)
* 909 New Jersey - For the folks who choose to walk from the Capitol South Metro station, the under-construction residential building at New Jersey and K is going to have 6,000 sq ft of ground-floor retail space when it's completed in summer 2009.
* Velocity - The ground floor of this 200-unit condo building at First and L will have retail (I can't find how much), and will be finished by late 2009.
* The Yards - By the end of 2009, the renovation of the old Boilermaker Shop at Third and Tingey into a 46,000-sq-ft retail space should be completed, and there is also 10,000 square feet of ground-floor retail space planned for the Pattern Shop Lofts building on the south side of Tingey, which should have its conversion into a rental building completed by the end of next year as well. Both of these are situated on the route that most Nats Express users walk along to get from the shuttle stop at 300 M to the ballpark. (But will the Nats Express run after this year?)
* Half Street Part 2 - The southern part of the east side of Half Street north of the ballpark is going to be a combination of a 200-room hotel and two residential buildings totaling 340 units, with about 40,000-sq-ft of ground floor retail to entice the throngs that walk along Half Street before and after games. (See retail spaces 5 through 8 on this page at the official web site.)
* 1015 Half - Opus East hasn't yet committed to whether there will be ground-floor retail in this 410,000-sq-ft office building at Half and L, though about 10,000 sq ft of space will be there.
* 23 I - If this 420-unit apartment building does indeed begin construction in September of this year, there could be 15,000 sq ft of retail available at Half and I by the end of 2010.
That's about 200,000 square feet of space to be filled within the next few years--and this doesn't include the retail spaces in the ground floor of the baseball stadium along First Street (who knows when those will be occupied). It's possible other buildings slated to have ground-floor retail could pop up between now and the end of 2010--1111 New Jersey and 250 M are the main candidates.
And there will also could be more offerings at the Yards by 2011 (including that grocery store planned for 401 M as well as the Lumber Storage Shed and other to-be-built pavilions at the Waterfront Park). And maybe the first building at Florida Rock, across from the ballpark's grand staircase, could be done by the end of 2011. But this is getting a little too far down the road....

Monument Realty's Plans for 50 M Street
Apr 30, 2008 1:04 PM
The northeast corner of Half and M is home to Nats Lot J these days, with the Sunoco station that used to be there having closed in 2006 (taking with it my first Gas Prices in the Hood location). The land was purchased in 2007 by Monument Realty for $14.3 million, and they're currently marketing the site as 50 M Street, a 135,000-square-foot build-to-suit office building, targeting associations in the area as possible tenants. Monument was nice enough to pass along this early conceptual rendering of the building (bigger version here). Waiting for a tenant means that this building probably won't get started anytime soon.
The project's M Street location means it will have to go through a Capitol Gateway Overlay Zoning Review, which includes the requirement that all the building's non-entrance frontage along M Street be devoted to retail space, and that no less than 35 percent of the entire first floor be retail. (See page 15 for more of the overlay's M Street requirements.)
As for the one-story red brick building behind the 50 M lot, that's a warehouse owned by the Feds, which as of now doesn't seem to be going anywhere. But that little spot is getting kind of valuable, isn't it?
And, since I don't have much else to show you these days, take a few minutes to "drive" M Street, first heading east then back west, to see the changes since 2003. Remember to click on the Click to see all available photos of this location. icon for any location where you'd like to see the photos between the before and the after....
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More posts: 50m, Monument/Half St., M Street

Thursday Meeting Preview (WMATA, Yards, Five Guys)
Apr 23, 2008 10:36 AM
A somewhat busy Thursday (April 24) is on the boards:
* We might be getting some news on the state of Monument Realty's lawsuit against WMATA over the sale of the Southeastern Bus Garage to Akridge--the WMATA Board of Directors is meeting at 11 am, and the agenda for their executive session includes "Legal Issues - Monument vs. WMATA." I know nothing beyond that.
* Forest City's plans for the office/residential/retail project at 401 M Street will be getting a Southeast Federal Center Overlay District Review in front of the Zoning Commission at 6:30 pm at Suite 220 South, 441 4th St., NW; you can also catch it via live webcast, if it's working. Read more about this from my ANC 6D wrapup last week and an earlier entry on the project.
* And, if you want to make your voice heard about the public space application by Five Guys for a sidewalk seating area, the Public Space Committee will be bringing it up at its monthly meeting, at 941 North Capitol Street, NE, 7th Floor, starting at 10 am. This is the application that ANC6D refused to support last week because of the lack of a community benefits package for the "loss of public space."

On the Fly Daily Lunch Vending on Half Street
Apr 22, 2008 10:23 AM
If you're looking for more lunchtime food options in Near Southeast (and who isn't?), here's word from the Capitol Riverfront BID that local "eco-vending" company On the Fly, which has been setting up shop before Nationals games on Half Street about 100 feet north of the ballpark entrance, will now be offering lunch from their neon-green electric "smartkarts" at that location daily from 11 am to 3 pm, starting today (April 22). Quoting: "In addition to its spicy turkey chili, named a "Home Run" by the Washington Post, On the Fly will offer Rocklands BBQ sandwiches, soft tacos with your choice of chicken estafado, pork carnitas or veggie filling, Japanese edamame salads, Brazilian chopped salad with beef tenderloin, couscous, vegetarian sides, energy bars and other organic natural snacks and beverages." Here's a coupon for a complimentary side order or snack between now and Friday--and it mentions Julia's Empanadas as another of their offerings (yay!). On the Fly also has carts at Farragut North, Gallery Place, and the Arboretum.
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More posts: Monument/Half St.

Updated Before and Afters: Half Street (and Others)
Apr 11, 2008 1:18 PM
The surprise appearance by the sun on Thursday gave me the chance to update some north-and-east photos on the way to the ballpark, mainly along Half Street, with a few from First, Cushing, and Van thrown in. You can see the entire batch of new photos, or you can check the 70/100 I, 909 New Jersey, Velocity, and Monument Half Street pages for a little bit of context as to what you're seeing, or you can look for the icon by intersection (Half and I, Half and K, Half and L, Half and M, First and I, Cushing and L, Cushing and M, Van and M). Make sure to check out the new photos I took last week along First Street if you missed them, to get a pretty complete view of what's happened in the neighborhood in the past two years. (Or just come down and see for yourself.) Hopefully soon I'll get some additional updated shots from along South Capitol Street and New Jersey Avenue (which will be changing thanks to 909 New Jersey now beginning the showy phase of its construction).
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More posts: 70/100 I, 909 New Jersey, jpi, Monument/Half St., Square 699n

Wednesday Night Ballpark Story Roundup
Apr 2, 2008 11:30 PM
* If you haven't been inside the ballpark yet and want a free visit on either Friday night (April 4) or Saturday afternoon (April 5), WTOP tells you how. (Hint: it involves signing up for the Nats promotional e-mail list.)
* The credit crunch on Wall Street has caused the interest rates on a small portion of the stadium bonds to skyrocket, says the Examiner.
* WTOP says that Metro feels pretty good about its performance on Opening Night (as do most riders, at least evidenced by the comments you folks have been posting), but they've got a few tweaks in store for the homestand next week. They'd like you to stretch out on the Navy Yard platform, please, and will put in more trash cans so that people can toss drinks and food and cigarettes when they get to the station.
* Speaking of the Navy Yard station, if you've done that walk up Half Street and want information on what's planned there beyond the renderings on the east-side fences (or want to see what was there up until about 18 months ago), check out my Monument Half Street page. Plans for the west side of the street, where the Southeastern Bus Garage has now been vacated by Metro, are stalled thanks to a lawsuit brought by Monument against WMATA after the land was sold to Akridge in a way that Monument contends was unfair.
* This is a little old, but I'll toss it in anyway (I *think* I haven't already linked to it; it's all just a blur now)--MLB.com reports that Stan Kasten was very happy with how Opening Night went in terms of the fan experience.
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More posts: Akridge/Half St., Metro/WMATA, Monument/Half St., Nationals Park
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