Tuesday Tidbits: Mmm, Mmm, Good Edition
Mar 11, 2014 3:58 PM
Goodness, these piled up all of a sudden. Let's start with the food and drink-related items:
* Strolling by the long-in-the-works Willie's Brew and 'Que at the Boilermaker Shops
over the weekend, I saw that flat screen TVs are now up on the walls. I imagine they are dreaming of being open by Opening Day.
And, on the non-digestible front:
* SWill reports
on ANC 6D's newest commissioner, Stacy Cloyd, who is filling the 6D02 vacancy left by Ed Kaminski. A resident of Southwest, Stacy will also be representing areas east of South Capitol, including Velocity, Capitol Hill Tower, and Nats Park (and River Parc
, before long).
* The new owners of the lot at South Capitol and N
just north of Nats Park have withdrawn the pending zoning case for the site, which predated the property's recent sale
. The previous ownership group had long been working on an office project, but in its withdrawal letter 1244 South Capitol Residential LLC says it is "studying development of the property for residential uses," and that it plans "to submit a new application for Capitol Gateway review in the near future."
* Outside the boundaries, but Near Southeast residents may still be interested in the looming start of the huge Wharf project on the Southwest Waterfront, with a ceremonial groundbreaking scheduled for March 19. Here's the Post's story on the new development
, along with a photo gallery (which might seem to have a somewhat familiar style) of the current waterfront
, before it's gone.
, ANC News
, Boilermaker Shops/Yards
, South Capitol St.
, Douglass Bridge
, The Yards, zoning
Details on Bang Salon at the Yards, Coming this Summer
Mar 5, 2014 4:19 PM
Some details out today about Bang Salon
at the Yards, which will be coming in late summer as part of the "$6.5 million, 30,000-square-foot fitness and lifestyle complex" anchored by VIDA Fitness at Forest City's Twelve12
apartment and retail project in the Yards
The 1,500-square-foot space will have a design described in a press release as "a fusion of modern, fresh and lively configurations that incorporates sophisticated hues of purple, black and white to create a classic, chic retro look," as can be seen in the rendering
. There will be 15 stations, which will be encased in "glossy dove grey pods with tufted silver leather panels."
Bang, which already has three locations elsewhere in the area, apparently uses a performance-based pricing system--rating the stylists, not the clients--as well as an online booking option. Not surprisingly, Bang's own hair and body products will also be available for purchase.
VIDA's other affiliates, the Penthouse Pool Club and the Aura Spa, are also coming to Twelve12
's three-story glass-enclosed retail complex at 4th and Tingey
. In addition, Sweetgreen and TaKorean have signed leases to occupy ground-floor space on this corner, and Harris Teeter is now working on its own build-out at the north end of the block. It's also right across the street from the Boilermaker Shops
, home of Bluejacket and Buzz Bakery, in case you need a reward after all the self-pampering and good living.
Early Pre-Leasing Getting Underway for Twelve12
Feb 28, 2014 11:30 AM
Even though it's probably still at least a good three months before anyone can move into the new Twelve12 apartment building
(i.e., the Teeter/Vida building) at the Yards, Forest City is about to softly begin the pre-leasing process.
Starting tomorrow (Saturday, March 1), leasing information will be available at the Foundry Lofts
building just across the way at 301 Tingey St., SE, where interested parties can get the scoop on Twelve12's amenities beyond all of the well-discussed food and spa options.
The building will have about 218 units, and also Sweetgreen and TaKorean in the ground-floor retail spaces at 4th and Tingey.
Beginning the Long, Slow, Joyous Farewell
Feb 27, 2014 2:57 PM
It's not going to be all gone for a number of months, though. Clearly they're mostly working inside as of now. But still....
This will be probably the second-largest building to be demolished in the neighborhood, after the old Capper Seniors building
at 7th and M. But I can't wait to see how Building 213
's departure alters the horizon--when I look at my photos, it amazes me how many times there's a glimpse of it in the background from all manner of angles.
My camera stands at the ready.
Photos: Much Catching Up to Do in the Name of Progress
Feb 23, 2014 3:53 PM
Finally, the weather and the calendar cooperated, and I spent Saturday taking a slew of photos around the neighborhood. To whit:
* HAMPTON INN
: I can report that dirt is indeed being moved (if not necessary removed) from the site of the Hampton Inn
on the northwest corner of 1st and N. This is the L-shaped hotel that will wrap around a planned two-story retail building right on the corner (which is not yet under construction). But, in case you weren't around pre-2008 and want to know what this hotel is "displacing," I give to you a peek at the hotel's N Street and 1st Street frontages in their previous lives:
* YARDS/PARCEL N
: Men in hard hats operating heavy equipment are now found on most of the block where Forest City's next residential project
is planned, south of Tingey and west of 4th. The new photos
aren't really all that interesting other than as another tick on the historical timeline, so how about a shot of what the Parcel N lot looked like in 2004
(right), before any of the work on The Yards began.
Toll Brothers's River Parc
apartment building at 1st and K is almost topped out (below left). A couple blocks away, WC Smith's Park Chelsea
has reached the halfway point of its vertical construction (below right).
* ST. MATTHEWS: While all sorts of newness is erupting around the neighborhood, there is one farewell worth noting, as St. Matthew's Baptist Church as New Jersey and L has left the neighborhood that had been its home since 1905 and the building that had been its home since 1972. Compare how it looked in 2006 (left) to today (right):
This site is part of the footprint for Donohoe's 1111 New Jersey apartment building
, and with a raze permit application filed, this corner will probably be emptied before too many months go by. The church has found temporary quarters in Ft. Washington as it looks for a new permanent home.
1111 New Jersey
, 880 NJ/Park Chelsea
, Square 701
, WC Smith/Square 737
, Toll Brothers Lots
, The Yards, yardsparceln
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: All About the Preparation
Feb 18, 2014 3:04 PM
* PREPARING TO DIG
: After a couple of articles
highlighting residents' opposition to the Virginia Avenue Tunnel
, the Post takes a look
at how CSX and some rail experts view the reconstruction and expansion of the tunnel as a necessary step.
* PREPARING TO DE-SPOOK
: The arrivial of bulldozers and dumpsters on site at the old NGA building
at 1st and M SE has sharp-eyed observers
tapping their toes waiting for the demolition to start, but as was mentioned previously
, it's going to take about six months to complete. But maybe they can at least knock out some exterior walls before Opening Day, as a statement of intent to Nats fans who haven't kept up with the latest news (tsk, tsk
* PREPARING TO ROCK
: I showed a touch of hard-won skepticism
last week in reporting that developers told ANC 6D that they expect to begin work on the first phase of Florida Rock's redevelopment
in June. So I will follow that up by noting that, two days later, they appear to have filed an application for a shoring/sheeting permit. (Not seeing an application for any building yet, though.)
* PREPARING TO WANT
: The WashBiz Journal last week looked at the retail states of four "hot neighborhoods" (subscribers only
), highlighting what they "flaunt" and what they "want." After the flaunting (20 restaurants
, Nats Park, Vida Fitness
, and Whole Foods
), Michael Stevens of the BID listed the "wants": child care facilities, apparel retailers, a large home furnishing store, and college classrooms (saying that the area "is positioning itself as a satellite campus destination for those maxed out on their space"). Non-subscribers can watch
some video of Stevens's talk at the BID's annual meeting, at least..
Zoning News: Yes to Vet, and Capper Hearing to Come
Feb 14, 2014 12:16 PM
Now that I've come out of my snow bunker (being a weather geek is a terrible disease), I'll pass along these notes from the past week or so in Zoning Land:
As I wrote a week or so ago, a vet is a potential tenant
's retail space on Tingey Street, but before a lease can be signed, "veterinary boarding hospital and veterinary hospital uses" needed to be added to the SFC overlay's allowed uses, subject to a number of conditions (no more than 50 percent of the tenant space can be for boarding, that any animal legally sold in the District can be boarded, incidental boarding of animals for convalesence is allowed, order and waste handling requirements, and that grooming and supplies can only be "accessory" uses). There was some back-and-forth about the word "incidental," and it was agreed that that wording be better phrased before the final vote.
Forest City does not announce tenants until a lease is executed, so the name of the potential vet has not been released.
: On Feb. 10, the commission voted to "set down" for a full hearing the Housing Authority's request to modify the Capper
PUD to allow 30 of the affordable housing units planned for squares 739, 767 and 768 to be transferred outside the Capper boundaries
to the block where the Park Chelsea
is currently under construction. (See the this map
culled from the Office of Planning Report
to help you visualize.)
The planning folks have a number of issues
they want DCHA to address before the hearing on this modification, but not among them is the biggest issue that ANC 6D has with Square 767: that the Housing Authority is thinking about a plan
that would change the original plans for a single 147-unit mixed-income building to two buildings, one a market rate-only condo building and the other an affordable housing-only building. (This plan is not mentioned in the housing authority's filings with the zoning commission.)
During the discussion, commission chair Anthony Hood noted that ANC 6D is "one of the ANCs that this commission knows is very engaged," which was in reference to the strongly worded letter the commission received
with 6D's concerns that they and the community still need to be "appropriately briefed" about DCHA's plans, and that the commission be able to "fully vet our concerns with them regarding the request for modification." Hood also said, "Let's make sure the next vote we see shows that everyone is working together."
Concurrently, the commission's vote also deferred action on DCHA's parallel request for a five-year extension to the PUD covering these same three squares, saying that the extension request decision hinges on the modification case's decision. The Office of Planning is recommending just a two-year extension
, and zoning commissioner Marcie Cohen said that DCHA needs to provide much more detailed information on the steps taken up to this point to secure financing, since it is her opinion that the initial filing doesn't seem show a "compelling need" for an exemption.
The hearing date isn't yet set, and DCHA will have to go to ANC 6D (and probably 6B as well) in order to request support before its zoning commission appearance. The Housing Authority and 6D have had a pretty contentious relationship over the years in regards to the Capper redevelopment, and it's unlikely that the deliberations over this zoning request will change that.
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.
Yards Zoning Cases: Trapeze Move, and Maybe a Vet
Feb 3, 2014 12:03 PM
In a nice break from its evaluations of boxy 13-story buildings, the Zoning Commission this week has on its agenda two cases dealing with somewhat unusual development requests at the Yards.
The first, which is being heard tonight, has to do with the reconfiguration of the block at 1st and M streets SE after spooky Building 213 gets demolished sometime in the coming months.
As I wrote back in December
, Forest City is wanting to move Trapeze School New York from its current 4th and Tingey location to the northwest corner of New Jersey and Tingey, shrink and reconfigure the existing 1st Street parking lot by 22 spaces, and build a temporary public park on the north half of the block. (The overview drawing
at right can help you visualize this.)
The parking lot and the trapeze school move each require zoning approvals for these new temporary five-year uses--if you want the serious details on why, and the evaluation of the zoning rules therein, read the Office of Planning report
ANC 6D and the Office of Planning have both supported this request, and this week the National Capital Planning Commission is adding its support
So, in honor of what apparently will be a year of change on this block, I've built a Yards Parcel A project page
, to be sure that Building 213's soulless windowless existence (and its brief ArtYards fling with color) is not forgotten.
This text is being added because of apparent interest from a veterinary hospital in leasing space in the ground floor of the soon-to-be completed Twelve12 apartment building
at 4th and Tingey, and the SEFC overlay does not specifically allow veterinary services, so it has to be spelled out.
And it's not a surprise that a vet is looking at the area--the Office of Planning report
sites a Capitol Riverfront BID survey saying that 40 percent of neighborhood residents have pets.
The Office and Planning and ANC 6D also support this request.
Tidbits: Train Tracks, Training, Treadmills
Jan 27, 2014 5:28 PM
* TRAIN TRACKS I:
There was another public meeting about the Virginia Avenue Tunnel
project on Saturday, again hosted by DC Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton. It was billed in advance as meeting with both her and representatives of the Environmental Protection Agency. However, EPA decided not to attend, apparently releasing this statement
(tweeted out by a DCist staffer) saying in part "EPA remains invested in the views of all stakeholders[.] ... However, the agency believes it is appropriate to first allow the DDOT and FHA time to consider the comments of EPA and others on the draft EIS."
* TRAIN TRACKS II: The Post covered the "heated" meeting
, highlighting that "CSX Transportation says residents in a Southeast Washington community who have raised concerns about trains carrying crude oil passing through the District can rest assured that crude oil transportation through the city is rare, and that there is no market in the area for it." CSX stated that it transported three loaded cars of crude oil through the tunnel in 2013, on separate trains, with none of them being the "unit trains" that cause such concern. However, last week the National Transportation Safety Board released recommendations for stricter federal oversight
of crude oil transportation. It also quoted Del. Norton as being "totally outraged" about the EPA no show. (And, just as the Tidbits went up, there's another link to add, this summary of the meeting
by ThinkProgress's ClimateProgress arm.)
* TRAIN TRACKS III:
And there were offerings from the two ANC commissioners whose districts include the tunnel but who have close to diametrically opposed views of the project. ANC 6D07's David Garber's letter to the Editor in the Post
says "There is no better time than now for [Mayor] Gray to show his leadership and stop this harmful project before it starts," while 6B03's Kirsten Oldenburg's description and thoughts
about Saturday's EPA-less meeting concludes with "[A]ll that can possibly be said about this proposed tunnel reconstruction is out there in the public domain. My hope is that the FEIS is released before we have anymore public meetings hosted by political leaders."
I mentioned in last week's Tidbits
that Teeter and VIDA would be starting the buildouts of their spaces at Twelve12 "very soon," and today VIDA sent out a press release announcing that Feb. 1 is in fact their start date. The release says that it's expected the Penthouse Pool Club
will open in early July, Bang Salon
in mid-July, VIDA Fitness
itself in August, and Aura Spa
in October. A few renderings of the VIDA spaces (lobby, pool, and kids zone), courtesy VIDA's Facebook page
(click to embiggen):
The release also mentions new-to-VIDA offerings at the Yards such as the "experiential cycling studio," the "Synrgy 360 globular multipurpose exercise apparatus," a hot yoga studio, "well-appointed, gender-specific European sauna and steam rooms," and the 1,000-square-foot Kids Zone shown above.
Ice Cream Jubilee Coming to the Lumber Shed
Jan 21, 2014 3:19 PM
Perhaps a snowy January day isn't the best one to announce this, but Forest City has just put out the word that Ice Cream Jubilee
will be opening in the Lumber Shed
at the Yards this spring. This will be the brand's first dedicated store location, and will be a 1,076-square-foot space on the northeast corner of the Shed, on the edge of the Yards Park. In addition to scoops, the store will sell pre-packaged half pints of many of its flavors.
Ice Cream Jubilee was the winner of the People's Choice award at the DC Scoop competition last July.
The army of kids who are brought to the Yards Park throughout the year will certainly figure out this new offering pretty quickly.
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, Twelve12/Teeter/Yards
Late Wednesday Tidbits
Jan 15, 2014 7:51 PM
Cleaning out the pending file:
* DIG IT
: The shoring and sheeting permit has now been approved for the residential building currently known by the spiffy moniker of Parcel N
at the Yards, which means that the parking lot on the southwest corner of 4th and Tingey should start being dug up any time now (beyond just the DC Water digging up that's been going on for a while). This building will have 327 residential units and 20,000 square feet of ground-floor retail when completed in either late 2015 or early 2016.
* MMMM, BEER
: Bluejacket is going to start offering tours of its brewery, beginning Jan. 31. The offerings range from a free tour with one complimentary taste of a Bluejacket brew to a $22 "tasting tour" to the $75 "Beer and Food Experience Tour." See the web site
for more details.
* A REVIEW
: Alas, the Post's Tom Sietsema did not have particularly good things to say
about the food at the Arsenal (but he did like Bluejacket's brewed offerings).
* ANC VACANCY
: The Board of Elections has officially certified
the vacancy in 6D02
after Ed Kaminski's resignation, and the wheels are now turning for a special election. Petitions may be picked up at the BOE and circulated until Feb. 3, with challenges to those petitions allowed through Feb. 12. If more than one person successfully makes it through the petition process, an election will be held, most likely at 6D's March business meeting. If only one candidate qualifies, that person automatically fills the vacancy. So, if you're itching to be an ANC commissioner and you live in Capitol Hill Tower, or Velocity, or 909 New Jersey, or across the way in the northeastern sections of Southwest, here's your chance.
* SOUTHEAST BLVD:
ANC 6B's Brian Flahaven has posted
the commission's draft comments
on DDOT's initial plans for the rebuild of Barney Circle and Southeast Blvd
. Spoiler: "The committee recommended a number of clarifying changes to the comments including the addition of an opening sentence that conveys the commission’s opposition to the design concepts presented to the community on Nov. 21, 2013. The committee also wanted to make it clear that other stakeholders besides DDOT need to be brought into the project discussion."
A Sneak Peek Inside Agua 301, Now Opening Dec. 21
Dec 16, 2013 12:14 PM
With Agua 301
now set to open at the Lumber Shed
in the Yards Park on Saturday, Dec. 21 (a day later than reported
last week), of course I had to get inside with camera in hand to check it out
I was sidestepping a busy crew of people still getting everything in place, so the images do not have the sheen of a minutes-from-opening space, but you can see the layout
and take in the views that the various tables will have. (I even tossed in one "before" photo, which is just a teensy bit different.)
The modern Mexican restaurant will begin with just dinner service, expanding to lunch and then brunch probably at the beginning of next month. And in spring, an additional 44 seats will be available outdoors, along both the southern and western sides of the building.
And this will bring to a close 2013's run of restaurant openings in Near Southeast--it takes some remembering that, one year ago, there was no Gordon Biersch, or Park Tavern, or Bluejacket, or Buzz Bakery, Osteria Morini, or Nando's Peri-Peri.
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).
ArtYards DC Wrapping Up With 'Illuminated Ops'
Dec 12, 2013 8:55 AM
, the project that has been breathing a bit of life into the spooky old National Geospatial Intelligence Agency building at 1st and M SE
for the past few weeks, is coming to a close this weekend.
For the finale they are presenting "Illuminated Ops
," which will project three specially commissioned video art pieces more than five stories tall and twice as wide onto the NGA building's façade at New Jersey and N/Tingey. There will also be custom audio tracks, and the Wonka Factory-like NGA gate at New Jersey and Tingey will be open so that viewers can get up close to the building should they wish.
The display begins at 6 pm for the next three nights, starting tonight (Thursday, Dec. 12). The images seen here are stills provided by Forest City Washington showing what the video projections should look like.
Agua 301 Reportedly Set to Open on Dec. 20
Dec 11, 2013 3:02 PM
City Paper's Young and Hungry blog is reporting today
that Dec. 20 is the expected opening date for Agua 301, the Mexican restaurant by the Zest folks on the southwest corner of the Lumber Shed
in the Yards Park
, next door to Osteria Morini.
CP says that the menu will have a "modern Mexican bent with a few less traditional touches." Tacos? Si! Small plates? Si! Guacamole? Si! Margaritas? SI! (But probably not fajitas, burritos, or enchiladas.) There will also be large entrees such as pan-seared black bass in case a small plate of beef barbacoa flautas doesn't quite fill you up.
The restaurant is expected to be open just for dinner to start, adding lunch and brunch service in January. And in the spring there will be 44 seats of outdoor patio seating, to take in the views of the Anacostia River.
Tidbits: Ice Rink Opening Soon, and Other Goings-On
Dec 5, 2013 8:29 PM
While I keep trying to get myself reacquainted with blogging (a process that clearly is not proceeding smoothly), I'm going to cheat and go with some Tidbits lists every so often, so that at least I can feel like I'm getting the spigot working better, even if it's still sputtering. Also, I have to get used to all these events, specials, and activities, which didn't used to be part of the Near Southeast blogging landscape.
* The BID reports in its latest newsletter that the Canal Park ice rink
is scheduled to open on Monday, Dec. 16. And speaking of the park, if you haven't wandered by, you may not know that Christmas trees and wreaths are for sale there this year. See the market web site for details
* On Saturday (Dec. 7), the 11th Street Bridge Park project
is holding two "community design meetings" that will provide an update about the project and break out attendees into smaller groups to work on ideas. A nationwide design competition for the project is expected to be launched early in 2014. The bridge park itself is expected to cost $35 million, which at this point is mostly unfunded. One meeting is at 200 I Street SE from 2 pm to 6 pm (details and RSVP here
) but there is also a morning meeting
. (via DCist
is going big with its first New Year's Eve celebration
. For your $160 ticket, you'll get an open bar for all Bluejacket brews, plus a DJ and "passed bites." Then there will be a champagne toast as part of the ceremonial midnight keg drop. (No, seriously.) And Bluejacket/Arsenal is now open for lunch
, too, and is serving Sunday brunch from 11 to 3, but you probably already know these things.
* If you want to look a little farther into the future: WMATA
has scoped out the subway alignments it would like to pursue
as part of its 2040 "core configuration" plan. How would you feel about a new Blue and Yellow line under 2nd Street from Union Station, turning west with a station at New Jersey and I before heading to Virginia? (It would also run under M Street NW from Georgetown to New York Avenue.) I can't wait to set out from my retirement home with my brain-embedded camera to take photos of this project.