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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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Recent Crime Incidents Archive  
1200 B/O HALF ST SE   ROBBERY  10/21/20
UNIT B/O K ST SE   THEFT
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 10/13/20
UNIT B/O M ST SE   THEFT
Theft 2nd Degree (all Other Larceny)
 10/12/20
1000 B/O 1ST ST SE   THEFT FROM AUTO
Theft (theft From Motor Vehicle)
 10/12/20
1100 B/O NEW JERSEY AVE SE   THEFT
Theft 2nd Degree (all Other Larceny)
 10/09/20
1000 B/O 8TH ST SE   ROBBERY
Armed Carjacking
 10/09/20
400 B/O M ST SE   THEFT
Theft 2nd Degree - Felony (theft From Building)
 10/07/20
900 B/O M ST SE   MOTOR VEHICLE THEFT
Theft First Degree (Stolen Auto)
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1000 B/O 3RD ST SE   MOTOR VEHICLE THEFT
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 09/30/20
UNIT B/O K ST SE   MOTOR VEHICLE THEFT
Theft First Degree (Stolen Auto)
 09/29/20
1100 B/O 2ND PLACE SE   ROBBERY
Assault W/i To Commit Robbery (simple Assault)
 09/28/20
1000 B/O 4TH ST SE   ROBBERY
Carjacking
 09/26/20
1200 B/O HALF ST SE   MOTOR VEHICLE THEFT
Theft First Degree (Stolen Auto)
 09/22/20
600 B/O L ST SE   THEFT FROM AUTO
Theft (theft From Motor Vehicle)
 09/21/20

Recent Issued Building Permits Archive  
1108 3RD ST SE   
10/06/20 
JULIANA DUFFY / null
E2100156 / SUPPLEMENTAL
915 5TH ST SE   
10/14/20 
RYAN DANIELS / FERNANDO A ANGULO; RYAN DANIELS
B2012669 / CONSTRUCTION
Partial floor joists replacement on first floor. replace 6 feet height wooden fence and gate. add protective coating to partial foundation wall.
1031 5TH ST SE   
09/30/20 
CLARICE GEE / null
P2009304 / SUPPLEMENTAL
150 I ST SE   
10/09/20 
SQUARE 737 LLC / JASON D DORRIS
AH2100047 / CONSTRUCTION
Construction of a new 13 story apartment building with three below grade parking levels, 1st floor retail and amenity areas; 373 units and 181 parking spaces. To include mechanical, electrical, plumbing, elevators and structural work.
   
10/15/20 
SQUARE 737 LLC / BOB BIROONAK; BOB BIROONAK
SG2000458 / CONSTRUCTION
one directional double face non illuminated sign
100 M ST SE   
09/25/20 
LHREV WASHINGTON M STREET LLC / THUY LE; NA
B2010745 / CONSTRUCTION
Suite 950 - Interior alteration. Work is to include minor change in MEP and Fire. No Structure.
139 N ST SE   
10/08/20 
null
SH2000028-EXT-1 / CONSTRUCTION
Original Permit expires 4 / 15 / 2021, 1st extension expires 10 / 15 / 2021
861 NEW JERSEY AVE SE   
10/13/20 
CXS TRANSPORTATION INC / null
P2100338 / SUPPLEMENTAL
125 O ST SE   
10/02/20 
DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA / null
M2100033 / SUPPLEMENTAL
71 POTOMAC AVE SE   
10/15/20 
RIVERFRONT HOLDINGS II, LLC / OLUSOLA PYNE
B2100519 / CONSTRUCTION
Shipping Container placement on lot for exterior use.
227 TINGEY ST SE   
09/30/20 
FC 227, LLC / BRIAN QUINN
B2011139 / CONSTRUCTION
Conversion of apartment unit to model unit.
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)
Yards/Guild Apts. ('19)
Capper/The Harlow ('19)
New DC Water HQ ('19)
Yards/Bower Condos ('19)
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99 M ('18)
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Hampton Inn ('15)
Southeast Blvd. ('15)
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Parc Riverside ('14)
Twelve12/Yards ('14)
Lumber Shed ('13)
Boilermaker Shops ('13)
Camden South Cap. ('13)
Canal Park ('12)
Capitol Quarter ('12)
225 Virginia/200 I ('12)
Foundry Lofts ('12)
1015 Half Street ('10)
Yards Park ('10)
Velocity Condos ('09)
Teague Park ('09)
909 New Jersey Ave. ('09)
55 M ('09)
100 M ('08)
Onyx ('08)
70/100 I ('08)
Nationals Park ('08)
Seniors Bldg Demo ('07)
400 M ('07)
Douglass Bridge Fix ('07)
US DOT HQ ('07)
20 M ('07)
Capper Seniors 1 ('06)
Capitol Hill Tower ('06)
Courtyard/Marriott ('06)
Marine Barracks ('04)


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