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In a wonderfully short hearing on Thursday night, the Zoning Commission voted 5-0 to approve Forest City Washington's request for an amendment to the current Southeast Federal Center Zoning Overlay to allow the company to temporarily move its offices to the second floor of the historic Lumber Shed building at the Yards Park.
The company made the request because, while there has been "great interest" from potential retail tenants for the first floor of the building, the second floor has not as yet been as enticing, and filling the ground-floor spaces alone is not enough to get construction financing secured. Because Forest City is "anxious" to get the building started, their move to occupy the second floor can settle the financing issues and finalize deals with interested tenants, which means that construction on the 34,000-square-foot building could begin this year and be open by early 2013.
There had been some concerns at the setdown hearing back in April about the "temporary" request being for a period of 20 years, but Forest City's representatives emphasized (as they also did to the ANC in April) that their intent is to be in the Lumber Shed only until there is office space elsewhere in the Yards to which they can move. Alex Nyhan of Forest City explained that getting retail uses into the second floor is currently "challenging" because the building is "by itself" at the Yards (without much built out around it), which is exacerbated by the fact that it's a somewhat seasonal destination. But Forest City feels that once the other projects in the first phases of the Yards are built out, there will be a demand for the second floor, plus "the onus is on us" to make the Yards into a location where second-floor retail not only at the Lumber Shed but in other Yards buildings is attractive to tenants.
The discussion seemed to satisfy the zoning commissioners, and with the Office of Planning in support of the change and no voices in opposition, the unanimous vote came quickly.
Nyhan also gave the commission a quick update on the status of the other first-phase Yards projects, to help illustrate that "after many years of planning" things are starting to move:
* The Foundry Lofts 170-unit apartment building will begin pre-leasing in August, and will open in October;
* The Boilermaker Shops retail space has announced five restaurant tenants, and will begin construction this month, opening in Fall 2012;
* And 401 M Street, home to a planned Harris Teeter and 200ish-unit apartment building, is expected to start construction this fall.
If you want to give up 30 minutes of your time to check out the proceedings yourself, the hearing should be available for on-demand viewing sometime on Friday. My post from the ANC deliberations on the request also has more information.
Comments (11)
   
 
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BillP says: (7/8/11 10:33 AM)
MORE GREAT NEWS! By early 2013, our neighborhood will have (or nearly have) the gorgeous, multi-million dollar Canal Park (perhaps with indoor/outdoor cafe), LRB2/coffee shop, 170 Foundry Lofts apartments with two restaurants, the Boilermaker Shops with five restaurants, a rebuilt Lumber Shed at Yards Park with more retail tenants, a Harris Teeter supermarket plus whatever else ends up in 401M (gym, more retail?) in addition to 225 apartments, and a completed Capital Quarter neighborhood.

Not to mention one less trash transfer station, one less smokestack, one less dilapidated deli and one less gigantic concrete bunker, replaced by 200k sf of fairly attractive office space.

So let's not dwell on empty holes on Half Street, random retail spaces not getting leased for a variety of reasons, etc. THIS is the momentum we've all been waiting/hoping/praying for!


MJM says: (7/8/11 12:49 PM)
BillP - last time I checked it out the deli was still there. Wonder if Akridge forgot about tearing it down?


JD says: (7/8/11 12:53 PM)
The raze permits were finally approved on June 16.


G Street says: (7/8/11 4:34 PM)
Wow - 3rd & 4th pix - You've got to LOVE architectural drawings. In my next life, I want to live in an architectural drawing!


jwa says: (7/8/11 10:01 PM)
Apologies if this has been covered somewhere else, but what's the story on the coffee shop next to canal park. It's been close to completion for quite a while but it looks like they've stopped work. I thought it was supposed to open around April or May??


JD says: (7/9/11 3:59 PM)
Commissioner David Garber--who has said he was working with the owner of the Little Red Building on the project--tweeted a few weeks back that there were building permit issues/delays. Haven't heard anything since then.



jwa says: (7/10/11 3:47 PM)
Thanks, JD.


jenniferp says: (7/11/11 3:47 PM)
The Market Deli apparently was razed today. The foreman of the project very kindly helped us catch five more very young kittens (well not me I wasn't there, but three are now in another one of my bathrooms). There are several more on the loose. The previous five are still in my guest bedroom waiting to go to a sanctuary in August (they were too old to really be adoptable unless someone wanted a project).

I haven't been able to find anything more specific on the Lumber Shed, but they are marketing for lease 11,500 SF of office space in the Boilermaker Shops on the second floor. I didn't know about this, I thought having that soaring space through the skylights would have made the retail spectacular. The asking rental rate of $33 NNN (about $50 full service) seems pretty steep.

The permitting process in DC can border on the ridiculous.



JD says: (7/11/11 3:49 PM)
Jennifer, it's a shame you didn't refresh the home page before posting this here. :-)


JD says: (7/11/11 3:54 PM)
Plus, are you sure it's the Boilermaker Shops where the office space lease is, and not the Lumber Shed?


JD says: (7/11/11 4:48 PM)
I think, judging from some drawings I've seen, ahem, recently, that that Boilermaker Shop office space is for a "third" floor, above the mezzanine/second level that is designed to take up about half the space of the building. You can see how they could float a small third floor up by the top level of windows, above the mezzanine portion of the building that's not going to take up the entire space. See drawing of mezzanine (w/out office space above) and the interior on my page: link

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UNIT B/O M ST SE   THEFT
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 02/15/20
400 B/O M ST SE   ASSAULT WITH A DANGEROUS WEAPON  02/08/20
300 B/O TINGEY ST SE   THEFT
Theft 2nd Degree (all Other Larceny)
 02/02/20
700 B/O L ST SE   THEFT
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Theft (theft From Motor Vehicle)
 01/27/20
1100 B/O 8TH ST SE   BURGLARY
Burglary Two
 01/25/20
303 VIRGINIA AVE SE   ROBBERY  01/25/20
400 B/O M ST SE   THEFT
Shoplifting
 01/23/20
1255 1ST ST SE   THEFT
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Recent Issued Building Permits Archive  
909 4TH ST SE   
02/12/20 
MEREDITH FASCETT / null
E2004655 / SUPPLEMENTAL
1300 4TH ST SE APT 214   
02/03/20 
null / NA NA NA
EHOP20983190 / HOME OCCUPATION
900 5TH ST SE   
01/24/20 
DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA HOUSING AUTHORITY / WILLIAM B. CRIST; WILLIAM B. CRIST
E2003968 / SUPPLEMENTAL
1021 5TH ST SE   
02/13/20 
KEVIN WILLIAMS / KEVIN WILLIAMS; KEVIN WILLIAMS
B2005053 / CONSTRUCTION
Apply for building permit to have final closing inspection for permit #B1602481 & B1602513 per inspector inspection report since these permits has expired.
82 I ST SE   
01/27/20 
GDV EYE STREET LLC / null
P2003302 / SUPPLEMENTAL
   
01/27/20 
GDV EYE STREET LLC / null
M2001261 / SUPPLEMENTAL
100 I ST SE APT T-13   
01/25/20 
null / NA NA NA
EHOP20960826 / HOME OCCUPATION
150 I ST SE   
02/14/20 
SQUARE 737 LLC / JASON D DORRIS
AH2000818 / CONSTRUCTION
Construction of a new 13 story apartment building with three below grade parking levels, 1st floor retail, and amenity areas; 375 units and 181 parking spaces. To include mechanical, electrical, plumbing, elevators and structural work.
250 M ST SE   
02/14/20 
SQUARE 769 LLC / null
P2003901 / SUPPLEMENTAL
800 NEW JERSEY AVE SE   
01/30/20 
NEW JERSEY AT H LLC / MICHELLE GABBITAS
AH2000649 / CONSTRUCTION
Manhole rehabilitation on New Jersey, 2nd St and M St SE to repair 3 existing sewer manholes in DDOT ROW. Work will all be done through existing manholes (trenchless) and include lining, rebuilding and bypass of existing manholes.
861 NEW JERSEY AVE SE   
01/28/20 
DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA / JANE MCCRAY
AH2000647 / CONSTRUCTION
Pepco contractor, W.A.Chester, will be splicing cable on 02 / 01 / 2020 - 02 / 28 / 2020, from 9 PM - 7 AM.
1275 NEW JERSEY AVE SE 20003   
02/14/20 
BROOKFIELD PROPOERTIES / TIM GOOD
AH2000849 / CONSTRUCTION
After hours to conduct work on 1275 New Jersey Ave SE on the upcoming holiday, Presidents Day, February 17, 2020. Operations would include below grade concrete and waterproofing activities with access limited to N Street. This permit would not include extended work hours beyond the normal 7am to 7pm period.
1275 NEW JERSEY AVE SE   
01/29/20 
US GOVERNMENT / null
E2004153 / SUPPLEMENTAL
   
01/29/20 
MILLER AND LONG / WILLIAM MOORE
AH2000659 / CONSTRUCTION
Afterhours to pour concrete with pump truck from 11pm to 7am from 2 / 6 / 2020 to 3 / 6 / 2020
   
01/30/20 
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA / VINCENT J. BROWNING; VINCENT J. BROWNING
P2003449 / SUPPLEMENTAL
1-Oil / Sand interceptor
   
01/30/20 
US GOVERNMENT / null
E2004202 / SUPPLEMENTAL
   
02/07/20 
MILLER AND LONG / WILLIAM MOORE
AH2000699 / CONSTRUCTION
Afterhours to put up towercrane with mobile crane saturday 2 / 8 / 2020 and 2 / 9 / 2020 from 5am to 1159pm
1322 PATTERSON AVE SE   
02/13/20 
JOINT BASE ANACOSTIA BOLLING - UNITED STATES NAVAL OBSERVATORY SI / TONYA HARRIS; TONYA HARRIS; TBD
BCIV2000046 / CONSTRUCTION
***FEDERAL PROPERTY*** PROJECT WILL CONSIST OF DREDGING THE EXISTING RETENTION POND AND INSPECTING AND CLEANING THE OUTLET CONTROL STRUCTURE (S1) LOCATED ON THE UNITED STATES NAVAL OBSERVATORY TO REMOVE SEDIMENT ACCUMULATION. CONTRACTOR SHALL AVOID THE CLEARING OF VEGETATION ON POND EMBANKMENTS AND SURROUNDING AREAS SO AS TO KEEP RESTORATION AND REPLANTING TO A MINIMUM.
71 POTOMAC AVE SE   
02/13/20 
MRP REALTY / JAMES VANEGAS
AH2000681 / CONSTRUCTION
Perform interior and exterior construction activities. New construction 14-story new residential multi-family building.
79 POTOMAC AVE SE   
01/23/20 
RIVERFRONT HOLDINGS I LLC / ; W&M NA
B2003750 / CONSTRUCTION
320 SQ Ft metal canopy extension to exterior canopy. Existing canopy is standalone structure covering an outdoor bar area.
227 TINGEY ST SE   
01/23/20 
FFC 227 / ANDY MCKELVEY; ANDY MCKELVEY
SP1900050 / CONSTRUCTION
Install in-ground, gunite swimming pool on 11th floor of new construction. Scope includes gunite pool shell, finishes, and closed pool circulation system. All fresh water plumbing, sewer, electrical and mechanical work / connections by others. this permit is for a new commercial swimming pool
   
02/12/20 
GONE YARD HOTEL OWNER LLC / BOB BIROONAK; BOB BIROONAK
SG2000048 / CONSTRUCTION
one double face illuminated blade sign
AH = After Hours; B = Alteration & Repair; D = Demolition; E = Electrical; FB = Boiler; M = Mechanical; P = Plumbing and Gas; PC = Post Card; R = Raze; SG = Sign; TL = Tenant Layout; TN = Tent; RW = Retaining Wall;

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Project Directory
Completed
Thompson Hotel ('20)
West Half ('19)
Novel South Capitol ('19)
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New DC Water HQ ('19)
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400 M ('07)
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20 M ('07)
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