Since January, 2003
            
 Sliding from Before to After

For those who haven't looked northward on New Jersey Avenue lately, may I offer two photos of the view, the first taken in January 2015 and the second this past weekend:
With apologies for wide angle lens images that make the Capitol dome look much smaller than it does in person, it's still plain to see that the construction of 82 I/801 New Jersey/Apartment to Be Named Later has taken a bite out of the "centered" view of the dome that New Jersey Avenue has enjoyed up to now.
The question as to why this project has been able to build so much closer to the curb line than others (which has not only affected the view shed but also caused many pedestrian movement-related issues over the past year) is one that is tied up in the gritty industrial history of that particular block, along with the phrase "by right."
Back so long ago it was even before I was born, the block north of I Street was a massive rail yard, as you can see in this 1939 photo but also in this portion of the 1909 Baist survey map for this area (you'll definitely want to see the enlarged and wider version of this map, as well as others of the neighborhood between 1903 to 1921 that I all but forgot were posted here on JDLand until I was writing this).
You can also see the footprint remnants of the old Washington Canal running diagonally toward New Jersey from the right side of the image up toward New Jersey and I and Square 695.
What you can also see on that map is the distinct property lines on surrounding blocks, where buildings stop and the official city-owned "right of way" begins, the width of which was based on the width of the street, so that a wide avenue such as New Jersey has a wider ROW than smaller streets nearby.
You can then also see that Square 695 has no extra ROW built in, except for a small portion on the western end.
This block is also not covered by the Capitol Gateway Zoning Overlay, and the design for 82 I fell within the requirements of its C3C zone (i.e., it's a "by right" project), so there were no submittals to the Zoning Commission, no input from the Office of Planning, etc.
And that's why the building is now "jutting" out into New Jersey, and why the excavation for the garage went right up to the curb line, and why the sidewalk won't be anywhere near as wide in this block as in others, though note that the ground floor is set further back from the curb than the stories above it, as seen in this rendering.
But seriously, take some time and browse the old maps.
Comments (22)
   
 
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E. Masquinongy says: (1/6/16 9:03 AM)
Awesome reporting, JD.

Maybe I missed it, but why do do the upper floors overhang? Thanks.


JD says: (1/6/16 9:05 AM)
They couldn't get away with no sidewalk, but because the lot is so small, I'm they decided to overhang the upper floors so that they could be right up to the property line and allow for that much extra space in the building.

(This is all the case on the 1st Street side as well, it's just less obvious since there is no 1st Street north of I--but you can see the jut if you stand on K and look north.)


NavyYardGuy says: (1/6/16 9:07 AM)
It all makes sense now.



202_cyclist says: (1/6/16 10:50 AM)
Does anyone have any additional information about the fire in the neighborhood this morning?

This is from the Capitol Hill listserve:

"200 Blk of M Street SE
The Mayor’s Office of Community Relations Ward 6 Liaison Seth Shapiro and District Government agencies responded to fire activity on the 200 block of M Street S.E. This non-residential event did not displace residents, but please avoid this area until the fire activity is completed.

Due to an on-going Fire Investigation, DC Fire EMS reports that the 200 block of M Street S.E is closed on L Street to M Street S.E from New Jersey Ave to 3rd Street S.E. Please use alternate routes."


JD says: (1/6/16 10:52 AM)
I think it ended up being the Green line problem?


202_cyclist says: (1/6/16 10:56 AM)
The lack of a safe passageway during construction is an annoyance and a hazard but I like that this building has no setbacks-- it is more urban than many of the quasi-suburban buildings in the neighborhood with extremely wide sidewalks.


202_cyclist says: (1/6/16 10:57 AM)
I think the Green line was a separate issue, as there was a train that unloaded at the Navy Yard station and it looked like normal service resumed (with a 7000 series car, nonetheless) with the following train.


Alan says: (1/6/16 11:30 AM)
Green Line was definitely a separate incident. I just assumed the fire was at Park Tavern since that's really the only burnable thing there.


JHUGrad says: (1/6/16 1:14 PM)
There was an ammonia leak at the Ice Skating Rink.


JChesh says: (1/6/16 2:13 PM)
Thanks JD for the backgrounder and reveal on the former train yard. That construction site and history is always a curiosity (and occasional obstacle) on my walk to work in the morning.


jaanku says: (1/6/16 5:00 PM)
The infringement on the sidewalks caused by the construction of 81 I has been a major pain in the butt. They seem either unwilling or unable to concern themselves with proper and safe pedestrian and vehicular movement around the site. Same goes for the yellow building across the street.


JES says: (1/7/16 9:16 AM)
Why does 82I, with much less space, have to shoulder the pedestrian burden, while the two WCS properties on the other side of the street, with OODLES of extra space, gets a free pass? If DDOT just forced WCS to build a temp sidewalk on their side, problem solved.


JD says: (1/7/16 9:17 AM)
I'm pretty sure the sidewalk at least in front of the Park Chelsea will be open pretty soon, since the building will be open pretty soon.


FromTheTurret says: (1/7/16 1:33 PM)
If you care enough, you could always contact your ANC representative www.anc.dc.gov/


G Street says: (1/7/16 1:37 PM)
We lost our $5 view of the Anacostia River, with all the building down there over the years.


jaanku says: (1/7/16 3:14 PM)
@frontheturret: if youre question is in regards to my comment then rest assured that I have already done that. Although it didnt seem to do much good.


conngs0 says: (1/8/16 10:50 AM)
JD, I'm guessing you weren't consulted for this article?

link

For one thing, the neighborhood was referred to as Navy Yard (as opposed to JDLand). Also, of all the cool things going on in the area, Laser Cat somehow made the short list of highlights (I know you would've provided at least a dozen better options)? And I was also surprised to learn that people here are standoffish (which clearly would be rebutted simply by reading the comments section on your blog)!

But I did learn that Navy Yard is on a trajectory to becoming DC's most densely populated neighborhood. That's actually pretty exciting news for the retail that's here and in the pipeline.


JD says: (1/8/16 10:53 AM)
I just provided some assistance on counting the number of active projects, but didn't have anything else to do with it. (Though the author is a neighborhood resident, so....)



JES says: (1/8/16 11:38 AM)
If the author's a neighborhood resident, they should probably know that Parcel O (number 21 on the map) isn't so far east as to be off said map...


Alan says: (1/8/16 12:43 PM)
The map in that article is a mess. 8, 20, 25 are all in the wrong location. 10 is on there twice. Cushing Place is two blocks longer than it should be.


conngs0 says: (1/9/16 9:53 AM)
Still... I am excited about any article that points out how far the neighborhood has come and where it's headed. 2016 is going to be another fun year!


RMP says: (1/11/16 2:36 PM)
On the Park Chelsea blog it sounds like move-ins aren't going to happen until April now. I really hope it doesn't take that long to open up I at least.

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1300 4TH ST SE 1001   
02/22/21 
AP BOWER RETAIL LLC / null
E2104231 / SUPPLEMENTAL
1346 4TH ST SE APT 1M   
02/06/21 
null / NA NA NA
EHOP21945129 / HOME OCCUPATION
1331 4TH ST SE R-2   
02/08/21 
FC 1331 LLC / FC 1331 LLC
BP2101814 / POST CARD
10 I ST SE   
02/16/21 
CAPITOL HILL RACQUET CLUB / NA; VICTORIA STEINHOFF
SB2100112 / CONSTRUCTION
Installation of up to six (6) 3-inch diameter direct-push Geoprobe borings to depths of up to 30 feet below grade as part of an environmental assessment.
555 L ST SE   
01/29/21 
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA / RENNE WELL; RICK HARLAN SCHNEIDER
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02/23/21 
809-853 NEW JERSEY AVE ACQUISITION LLC / SUSANA VAZQUEZ
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02/11/21 
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02/11/21 
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E2103924 / SUPPLEMENTAL
861 NEW JERSEY AVE SE   
02/05/21 
GS CSX HOTEL OWNER LLC / null
E2103762 / SUPPLEMENTAL
1275 NEW JERSEY AVE SE   
02/02/21 
FC 1275 NJ LLC / null
E2103662 / SUPPLEMENTAL
   
02/11/21 
FC 1275 NJ LLC / null
P2103445 / SUPPLEMENTAL
848 SOUTH CAPITOL ST SE   
02/16/21 
CXS TRANSPORTATION INC / VICTORIA STEINHOFF; TBD
SB2100111 / CONSTRUCTION
Installation of up to six (6) 3-inch diameter direct-push Geoprobe borings to depths of up to 30 feet below grade as part of an environmental assessment.
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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909 New Jersey Ave. ('09)
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400 M ('07)
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