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Near Southeast DC Past News Items: Square 701
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34 Blog Posts Since 2003
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Skanska has announced today that restaurant Circa will open a new location in the ground floor of 99 M Street, the office building just now getting underway on the southwest corner of 1st and M Streets, SE.
The restaurant will take 5,000 square feet in the building's corner space (seen in the rendering) and will have both indoor and outdoor seating.
Circa also currently has locations in Foggy Bottom, Dupont Circle, and Clarendon, and is part of the Metropolitan Hospitality Group, which also operates three restaurants in Merrifield.
This is the first announcement of any tenants for 99 M (either retail or office space), though Skanska's Rob Ward is quoted by WBJ as saying that they are in talks with a "handful" of prospective office anchors.
Circa serves a full menu (including lunch and brunch) at its other locations, "offering American style cuisine with international flair."
This building is on the north end of the stretch of 1st Street between M and N just north of Nats Park, a strip where the Hampton Inn is wrapping up construction and where Grosvenor's Residence Inn and F1rst residential buildings are getting their vertical construction started.
It's not expected that 99 M will open before late 2017.
Comments (5)
More posts: 99m, Restaurants/Nightlife, Square 701

Eagle-eyed JDLand readers (are there any other kind?) have noticed in recent days that the final remnants of the former Nats Parking Lot F on the southwest corner of 1st and M Streets SE has been shut down and that some equipment has arrived on site.
This is the location where Skanska is planning 99 M Street, a 233,000ish-square-foot building that would be the first new office development in the neighborhood since 1015 Half Street was finally completed back in 2011.
Excavation and foundation permits were both issued back in July, and my understanding is that the construction team is indeed "mobilizing," plus plans for a formal groundbreaking are in the works.
No tenants have been announced as yet.
When complete, the building will have 11,000 square feet of ground-floor retail, and one heck of a rooftop. And it will look slightly different from the former resident of the site.
Once the digging begins, it will then mean that the entire west side of 1st between M and N will be under construction, as the Hampton Inn on the south end of the block nears completion and the Residence Inn and F1st residential projects in the middle of the block are at the start of their vertical construction.
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More posts: 99m, Development News, Square 701

The new Hampton Inn and Suites on the northwest corner of 1st and N Streets, SE, still looks to have a ways to go to reach the point of "substantial completion," but signs are now (literally!) pointing to a late fall opening for the neighborhood's second hotel, and the first to open since 2006(!).
Not only did this "Opening Fall 2015" sign recently materialize on the building's west face, but the hotel now appears in the Hampton Inn web site inventory, with a note that it "will soon be joining the Hilton Worldwide Portfolio of Brands and is presently accepting reservations for arrival November 19, 2015 and beyond."
The ad copy suggests meeting for drinks "in our rooftop lounge as you take in spectacular views over the cityscape, Anacostia Riverfront, and Nationals Park."
It also notes that the hotel is within walking distance of the ballpark, which may be underselling the location just a touch.
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More posts: hamptoninn, Square 701

With Florida Rock/Dock 79 having graduated from the lineup, the neighborhood now has "only" six holes in the ground, representing five residential projects and two hotels.
Photographic evidence obtained through cyclone fences shows that 800 New Jersey (at right), aka the building that's going to have a Whole Foods in the ground floor, is currently looking like it will be the next development to arrive at ground level, now a little over a year after excavation began.
The other five sites have at least partially gotten to the lowest part of their excavations, and cranes have sprouted at four of them.
From left, in order of time spent shoring and sheeting and excavating: 1111 New Jersey, 801 New Jersey, 909 Half, the Homewood Suites at 50 M, and the Residence Inn/F1rst hotel/residential project at 1st and M:
Which one will make it to ground level next? (Please, no wagering.)

"Honey, what do you want to do when you grow up?"
"I want to peek through construction fences to take pictures of huge holes in the ground!"
While I'm pretty sure this wasn't on my childhood list of aspirations, I'll still present to you the latest JDLand State of the Dirt report.
From oldest hole to newest hole, we have residential projects 800 New Jersey/Whole Foods*, Florida Rock/Riverfront, 1111 New Jersey/Galley at Capitol Riverfront, 909 Half, and 82 I, then the Homewood Suites at 50 M, and finally the F1rst/First residential and Residence Inn combo.
* If you are wondering about the new one-story structure at the far left of the above photo that has popped alongside the Park Chelsea and the 800 NJ excavation, which you can, it is the "covered vehicle court" that will serve the garage and loading docks for these two projects and the eventual third building on the block.
(Click to enlarge, as always)
If you wish for more context with any of these photos, follow the links up top to go to the project pages.

I see that the two new owners on Half Street decided it was time to clear away the traces of the previous occupants and introduce themselves to the neighbors:
Also now appearing on Half Street (below left) is a spiffy logo for Due South, the restaurant coming this year to the Lumber Shed at the Yards. (The restaurant is a Bo Blair enterprise, as is the Fairgrounds, hence the cooperative crossover deal.) And, one block to the east (below right), it didn't take long for Grosvenor to make its F1rst presence known.
(Yes, I finally went out and took pictures. Be prepared for the coming onslaught.)

We've been calling it Ballpark Square, but now the Grosvenor/McCaffery residential, hotel, and retail project along 1st Street SE between M and N has its official name:
(Yes, that's a numeral "1" in place of the "i".)
We also now have an operator for the 170-room hotel--it will be a Residence Inn by Marriott, joining the chain's Courtyard location that's been in the neighborhood since 2006.
The residential building will have 325 units--a mix of studios through 2 BR/den--plus a fitness center, club room, outdoor courtyard, garage with bike parking, and a rooftop deck with a pool, grilling stations, dog park, and an "outdoor multimedia theatre" on the building's southwest corner that will have stadium-style seating and a view into Nats Park.
It will take about two years for the buildings to be completed, though some retail tenants could move in starting in the first quarter of 2017.
And, as I reported a few weeks ago (even though nobody believed me), Taylor Gourmet and Chop't are already signed for some of the project's 25,000 square feet of retail.
The event today did not have shovels and hardhats--which made sense given that the ground has already been broken--but there were dignitaries and speeches, and a ceremonial throwing of baseballs into the construction footprint.
I took photos, of course, and here's the full gallery. A few snippets here, though:

The digging is already underway on the west side of 1st Street SE midblock between M and N, but that won't get in the way of a ceremonial groundbreaking scheduled for Wednesday, April 8, at 2 pm, that will celebrate the start of the 450,000-square-foot Grosvenor/McCaffery residential/hotel/retail project just north of the already under construction Hampton Inn.
This development has been referred to up until now as "Ballpark Square," but apparently its real name will be unveiled at this event.
The rendering above shows, from left, the project's two-story retail building at 1st and N, just across from Nats Parking Lot C, then a blank spot where the Hampton Inn is being built, then the 285-unit (or is it 325-unit) residential building, then the 170-room hotel (no operator so far named). At far right is the 233,000 square foot 99 M Street office building being developed by Skanska, which isn't technically part of this groundbreaking but which appears to be close to getting its own permits to start digging.

Comments (5)
More posts: F1rst Residential/Hotel, Development News, Square 701

The second week in March started off pretty notably in Near Southeast:
First, the one that's probably of most interest, the arrival of Bonchon's signage, now hung outside of its space on the southwest corner of Half and K, inside 1015 Half Street.
I peeked in the door, and it appears to still be a few good weeks from opening, which would seem to jibe with the "early April" target date that the restaurant posted on its Facebook page back in February. So everyone will just have to look at these signs and dream for a little while longer.
One block to the south, fences and equipment arrived at the parking lot on the northeast corner of Half and M, and this morning ground was being broken (for real, not ceremonially!) for what will become a 195-room Homewood Suites.
This will be another addition to the neighborhood's burgeoning lineup of hotels, with the long-established Courtyard by Marriott at New Jersey and L about to be joined by the under-construction 168-room Hampton Inn at 1st and N, plus eventually also the as-yet-unnamed brand in the as-yet-unnamed Ballpark Square project.
Speaking of which.... Fences went up Monday afternoon around the sidewalk on the west side of 1st Street south of M, generally along the boundary of the residential and hotel portion of the Grosvenor/McCaffery project currently referred to as Ballpark Square. No heavy equipment has arrived, and as I mentioned recently there's plans for a ceremonial groundbreaking in coming weeks, but fencing off the public sidewalk would seem to be a bit of a "tell."
This project will have a 285-unit apartment building alongside the 180-room hotel, and 45,000 square feet of retail that will stretch across these two buildings, the Skanska 99 M office building at the corner of 1st and M that is also expected to get started Any Minute Now, and a separate two-story retail building at 1st and N.
And, just to emphasize how many new projects have gotten underway in the past few weeks, here's official documentation (finally) of the work underway at residential projects 909 Half (left) and 82 I (right), which together will add another 615ish units to the neighborhood inventory when they open.
Having a hard time keeping all of this straight? Check out my refreshed-for-2015 What's New in the Neighborhood Since Last Season page, with handy maps of the restaurants that have opened or are coming soon, the new lineup of project plans just north of Nats Park, and the 10 (TEN!) residential projects currently under construction or starting momentarily. Be prepared for a lot of blocked sidewalks and a lot of construction vehicles on your way to the ballpark this year....

If your tastebuds are on the lookout for additional options in the neighborhood, tell them that I am hearing that Taylor Gourmet and Chop't are slated to be tenants in the pending Grosvenor-McCaffery-Skanska mega project along 1st Street SE between M and N currently dubbed Ballpark Square.*
But said tastebuds will need to be patient, as the project is still a few weeks away from an expected ceremonial groundbreaking, and then it will take a while to construct the project's 285-unit apartment building, 180-room hotel, and 233,000-square-foot office building in the block just north of Nats Park.
All told, there will be about 45,000 square feet of retail across the project, with about 7,000 of it in the separate two-story 7,000 square feet retail building at the corner of 1st and N, also being developed by Grosvenor/McCaffery.
The rendering at right showing the 99 M office building, the hotel, and the residential building as seen from the northwest corner of 1st and M may help get your bearings on the location and plans.
No operator for the hotel has been announced as yet. (And note, as always, that this is separate from the Hampton Inn currently going up on the south end of the block.)
* I've also heard that "Ballpark Square" is actually not the final name of the development. This allows me to yet again point people to my June 2007 post, Name Your Own Near Southeast Development Project!
34 Posts:
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