Since January, 2003
            
 Sliding from Before to After

One of the top three questions that gets asked here at JDLand is "When is a grocery store coming to the Near Capitol Ballpark River Yards area?" (Well, maybe it doesn't get asked quite like that.) For a number of years there's been a planned grocery space on the southeast corner of 4th and M, as part of the first phase of development at the Yards; but thanks to the Economic Difficulties there hasn't been any recent indication of when (or if) that building might get underway.
However, it seems that the wheels are finally beginning to turn, and Forest City is now starting the process of shepherding a revised design for the site (known as "Parcel D") through the city's planning processes. And it appears that a full-service grocery store could be arriving in the neighborhood by late 2013 or early 2014. While that's not exactly right around the corner, those dates would seem to be an improvement over "someday, we hope."
These new designs replace the original plans for one office and one residential building with a single 220ish-unit apartment building, with 20 percent of the units earmarked as affordable housing. The 50,000 square feet of ground-floor grocery store space would still be at the north end of the block (near the red brick wall and turret), plus there would be additional retail space that would include a three-story fitness and spa facility. (And note that this is new construction, on a currently empty lot--the large red brick Gun Mount Shop just to the east of Parcel D is a separate project known as "Factory 202", designed as condos in the original plans.)
Forest City is hoping that construction could possibly start in early 2012, with a delivery in late 2013 or thereabouts. (But, repeat after me: dates like this are not written in stone.)
No names are officially attached to either big retail space at this time. However, WBJ reported a year ago that Harris Teeter has signed a letter of intent for the grocery store space, and, gosh, Vida Fitness sure is hanging around in the neighborhood a lot these days! Plus Vida said a few months ago that they have plans to open a branch in the Navy Yard area in 2013.
These new designs will apparently be presented to ANC 6D on Monday (a meeting which I, alas, will be missing), plus they are on the agenda for Thursday's Commission of Fine Arts meeting. They should also be going to the Zoning Commission at some point, so more details should become available as the process goes along.
I hope to have renderings of the new design soon, and will update this post when I get them. In the meantime, you'll have to settle for some renderings on my project page of the old original designs for 401 M and 400 Tingey from back in 2007.
UPDATE: Renderings have now been added to my 401 M/Parcel D page. A little taste of Southwest DC in the apartment building design, isn't there? The fitness/spa facility at Fourth and Tingey is much more modern (and I believe it will have space for some additional retail as well).
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dgriner says: (9/9/10 11:11 PM)
This is great news! Even though it wouldn't be for quite a while, its still a move in the right direction. A full scale, local grocery store is essential as a cornerstone of a neighborhood that expects to attract new residents and growth.


MJM says: (9/10/10 8:32 AM)
2013ish is the year when this area won't look the same. BTW - kinda interesting looking back on JD's pic - seems to be a burst of activity about every two/three years or so. For what its worth - FCE just turned a nice profit yesterday and seem to be back on their feet so maybe we are starting to see that with the restart of the Yards.


Mark says: (9/10/10 8:34 AM)
JD - I ran into a Forest City employee over the weekend, he confirmed the information you've collected about 401 M - moreover, we discussed the Harris Teeter going into the building. So, I'm assuming we'll be welcoming the Teeter into our neighborhood sometime around Christmas 2013. :)


JD says: (9/10/10 10:19 AM)
Mark, I'm not surprised a Forest City rep "confirmed" what I posted, since that's who I talked to....! :-)


Bruce says: (9/10/10 10:34 AM)
Things are moving in the right direction. I believed in this area when I bought in 2006 and I still do now.


JT says: (9/10/10 10:51 AM)
Totally unrelated, but a big sign with a depiction of the modified building was going up on the south side of "200 Eye Street" as I rode my bike to work this morning.


JD says: (9/10/10 10:54 AM)
Here's a photo of that banner, JT, from Twitter this morning:

link


DG says: (9/10/10 11:55 AM)
I agree that this is great news. I've only lived in Near Southeast since April 2009, and I'm amazed by how much it has changed in such a short time. All the future developments will be great.


JT says: (9/10/10 11:55 AM)
My bad. I'm not all fancy with technology like you young kids.


JD says: (9/10/10 11:58 AM)
JT--LOL! If someone of my advanced years can do it.... ;-)


Jesse says: (9/10/10 5:54 PM)

I, and countless DOT employees, are desperate for Harris Teeter to open a grocery store at 4th & M Street, which is right next to the US Department of Transportation buildings.

It would be so nice to pop over to the grocery store in mere minutes. And the grocery store would definitely be mobbed during the lunch-hour by the 5,000 or so DOT employees. Not to mention, Navy Yard military brass and personnel.

In the past, I have walked to the Potomac Avenue Harris Teeter store in Jenkins Row, but it is a long walk spanning at least 16 blocks each way. I'm a big walker and runn and enjoy walking there, but it takes time to get to Jenkins Row and back. At least a full hour round-trip!

2013 can't come fast enough for HT to open a store here at 4th & M Street.

Hurry Up!!!

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FEDERAL CENTER LP / null
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SQUARE 742 LLC, C/O SPAULDING & SLYE/STE 100, / PAUL WHITLEY
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KRISTA ASHSHAHEED / null
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1275 NEW JERSEY AVE SE   
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DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA / null
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