Monument Advances Plans for 7-Story U Street Mixed-Use Project

Monument Advances Plans for 7-Story U Street Mixed-Use Project

Monument’s proposal to bring a new 7-story residential building with ground floor retail next to the Howard Theater is closer to gaining community approval as the developers negotiate the terms of their project with the advisory neighborhood commission (ANC).

The proposal includes plans to preserve and incorporate some of the existing street-facing facades into the project. The property is currently occupied by several one- and two-story retail buildings on T Street (home to several Ethiopian businesses) and a surface parking lot and warehouse on Wiltberger Street, NW.

Designs by PGN Architects call for a 7-story plus penthouse development with below-grade parking and ground floor retail.

Earlier designs indicated the project could include as many as 110 units of residential development, increasing the supply of multi-family housing in the area where U Street meets Shaw.

A draft agreement between the local ANC and the developers lists among the project benefits the proposal to preserve and incorporate portions of the street-facing elevations 610 and 618 T St. NW because  they include “character defining features that reflect the historical development of the T Street area.”

Featured image: rendering from September 2015.

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For NoMa’s Eastern Half Density Is on the Horizon

For NoMa’s Eastern Half Density Is on the Horizon

New, under-construction, and planned residential and mixed-use buildings along 2nd and 3rd streets NE are poised to bring thousands of residents and tons of retail between Union Station and Union Market over the next several years. From the development will emerge a higher density neighborhood to the east of the railroad tracks, one that rivals or at least complements the dramatic changes already seen to the west in NoMa and along the high-density western edge of H Street.

This article appears in The Hill Rag’s October issue, available at newsstands now.

“The [NoMa] BID has always anticipated that the east-side area is an integrated part of NoMa, vibrant and growing,” said Robin-Eve Jasper, president of the NoMa BID (North of Massachusetts Business Improvement District). “These east-west connections between the east side of the tracks and the west side of the tracks have always been a critical part of the neighborhood’s development.”

As new buildings pop up along 2nd and 3rd streets on industrial or formerly vacant sites, there will also be a natural flow south to north, from Capitol Hill’s northwestern edge to H Street and up to Union Market. “I think 3rd Street is going to be one of the hippest and best streets in the city,” said Tony Goodman, advisory neighborhood commissioner for near northeast and NoMa. “You’ve got historic buildings, new buildings, tons of retail coming in, really good developers and an interesting mix of buildings.”

Goodman sees the growth coming to his community as similar to what happened in Columbia Heights. In Columbia Heights, first came 14th Street with its DC USA mall and more “useful” retail, then 11th Street began to fill in with interesting restaurants and community-serving retail like Meridian Pint or The Coupe.

Unlike Columbia Heights or even nearby H Street, the area poised for growth in NoMa did not have prior residential history, meaning there is little to lament in the loss of vacant lots and industrial sites for the railroad, noted Goodman. “The real change is that it will go from being under-used surface parking lots and industrial land to being really great 21st-century mixed-use development,” said Jasper.
What’s New and on the Horizon?

Station House,701 2nd St. NE (built). Station House is a new 378-unit apartment building that straddles Capitol Hill and H Street. The development by Fisher Brothers and Mack-Cali began leasing its mixture of studios and one-, two-, and three-bedroom units in March through Roseland, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Mack-Cali. The building includes a 309-spot underground parking garage. The design team was Handel Architects and Hickok Cole Architects.

Uline Arena, 1140 3rd St. NE (under construction). The Uline Arena, under development by Douglas Development, will feature a flagship 51,000-square-foot REI. The project involves gutting the former Uline Ice Arena, where the Beatles played their first US concert, and redeveloping it to include 70,000 square feet of retail, 174,000 square feet of office space, and a new 168-space, four-level parking garage. The project architect is Antunovich Associates.

300 M St. NE. The Wilkes Company proposes a two-phased project at this site, most recently occupied by a surface parking lot often used for Metropolitan Police Department cruisers and a two-story warehouse and office building. The first phase would include about 400 units of residential and more than 10,000 square feet of retail with 187 off-street parking spaces in a below-grade garage. The project architect is Hickok Cole.

200 K St. NE. Toll Brothers recently received permits to begin the first phase of its two-phase residential and ground-floor retail project adjacent to the existing Loree Grand, 250 K St. NE. The Cohen Cos. originally planned the entire project, but after developing the Loree Grand sold the undeveloped section of the site to the Toll Brothers in 2013. Toll Brothers is developing one phase with 296 units, a second with 229 units, and a total of more than 16,000 square feet of retail. There will be 240 spaces in a below-grade parking garage. Designs are by Davis Carter Scott Architects.

Central Armature, 1200 3rd St. NE. The property at 1200 3rd St. NE, home to Central Armature for more than two dozen years, will become a mixed-use development through a partnership of Trammell Crow development and long-time owners, the Dorr family. The project is still in the planning phase but could entail a mixture of residential, retail, and hotel uses.

301 N St. NE. Foulger-Pratt Development recently submitted plans prepared by architects AA Studio to the Historic Preservation Review Board for the redevelopment of and addition to Capital Self-Storage at 301 N St. NE. The proposal calls for ground-level retail use with residential above in the existing structure and construction of an 11-story apartment building to the east and south.

More Is More

The new development under construction or in the works will give even more people a reason to come to NoMa and will add thousands of new residents and workers in the coming years, said Jasper.

Goodman envisions a future where 15,000-20,000 people live in NoMa and tens of thousands of people work and visit. “I think it’s going to be one of the densest residential neighborhoods in the city … the country probably,” he added.

Featured image is a rendering of The Wilkes Company’s 300 M St. NE.

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Peebles 5th and I Project Up for Historic Review Oct. 1

The Peebles plan for 5th and I--rendering from 2014.

The Peebles plan for 5th and I–rendering from 2014.

The Peebles Corporation and Walker Group are advancing plans to bring a mixed-use 12-story building with a roof deck and two levels of below-grade parking to a lot at 5th and I Streets, NW in Mt. Vernon Triangle. The project, slated to include a Standard International hotel as well as branded residences, will go before the Historic Preservation Review Board Oct. 1.

Peebles and the Walker Group won the right to redevelop the site, a former District government property, in May 2014. Last fall the developers agreed to a $28 million price tag.

As proposed the first eight floors will be a hotel and the top 4 floors will be residential. The ground floor will include the  hotel lobby entrance at the corner and a restaurant facing I Street.

The Historic Preservation Office staff report on the project calls for several architectural refinements, but recommended that the Historic Preservation Review Board generally find the plan compatible with the area.


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Florida Avenue Whole Foods Land Deal Approved at Council

Rendering of the proposed project at 965 Florida Ave. Image courtesy of MRP Realty.

Rendering of the proposed project at 965 Florida Ave. Image courtesy of MRP Realty.

The land disposition needed to clear the way for the redevelopment of 965 Florida Ave. NW, the future home of a mixed-use development to include a Whole Foods grocery, was approved by the DC Council this week. The project site was an unused District government parking lot with a small abandoned building.

The project–a collaboration between MRP Realty and Ellis Development Group–will bring 350+ residential units of which 30% will be affordable to residents earning 30% or less than the area’s median income. The project will also include a 370,000 square foot mixed-use development to include 50,000 square feet of ground-floor retail.

The Whole Foods will take up about 40,000 square-feet at the new development. No target opening date has been set.

The developers agreed to prepare and submit to the Zoning Commission an application for a planned unit development (PUD) within 120 days of the land disposition approval.


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Streetcar May Carry Passengers in 2015, Yet

Streetcar testing on H Street, NE. Image courtesy of DDOT.

Streetcar testing on H Street, NE. Image courtesy of DDOT.

Inclined to cagey responses about exact timelines for the much-delayed D.C. Streetcar, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser said she expects to ride on the 2.2 mile H Street Streetcar line during her first year in office.

Bowser made the rare, if still vague, commitment during an appearance on the Politics Hour on WAMU’s Kojo Nnamdi Show Friday.

“I will ride it in the first year,” said Bowser. Bowser took office Jan. 2.

The streetcar has seen setback after setback, spanning several mayoral administrations.

Recent months have seen crews making repairs to broken rails, changing platform heights to keep the doors from scraping when opening and other issues raised in a March finding from the American Public Transportation Association.

In April the city began construction on the Carbarn that will house the streetcars and serve as training center and locker space for streetcar crews.

Streetcar barn as seen in early September 2015.

Streetcar barn as seen in early September 2015.

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11th Street Bridge Park Eyes 2019 Opening

Image courtesy of OLIN / OMA.

Image courtesy of OLIN / OMA.

Nearly a year after selecting a design by Oma + Olin, the team behind the 11th Street Bridge park has raised about a quarter of the estimated $45 million needed for construction and anticipates a mid-2019 opening.

Spanning the Anacostia River, the 11th street bridge will be a new public park on an old freeway bridge over the Anacostia River, connecting Capitol Hill and historic Anacostia. The design proposal features an amphitheater, rain gardens, a boat launch, a picnic area and an environmental education area, among other uses.

Earlier estimates had put an opening at some time in 2018, but Urban Turf reported the latest update earlier this week.

Scott Kratz, the park director, told Urban Turf that he expects pre-construction, soon to be underway, to last two years and construction to take another year to 18 months after that.

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2.5-Acre NoMa Site Slated for Mixed-Use

Central Armature Works on 3rd Street NE. Image from Flickr by X.

Central Armature Works on 3rd Street NE. Image from Flickr by Elvert Barnes.

A site directly east of the NoMa Metro Station is the latest in the area to surrender its holdout position and give in to the wave of development drawing together the evolving neighborhoods of NoMa, Union Market, Union Station and H Street, NE.

The property at 1200 3rd St. NE, home to the Central Armature for more than two dozen years, will become a mixed-use development through a partnership of Trammell Crow development and the Dorr family who has long owned the site, according to the Washington Business Journal.

The Business Journal reports that electrical repair and supply warehouse site will become a combination of residential (both rental and for sale), retail and hotel uses.

“In recent years, the NoMa neighborhood has evolved dramatically,” said Josh Dix, senior vice president for High Street Residential/Trammell Crow Company, in a prepared statement.

Trammell Crow will add the 2.5-acre development site directly adjacent to the NoMa Metro station to its portfolio of projects in the area, to include Sentinel Square I and II.

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13-story, 163-unit Residential Project Planned Near Nats Park

13-story, 163-unit Residential Project Planned Near Nats Park

A new residential project, the sister project to One M Street, will bring a 13-story 163-unit building to 10 Van Street, SE just one block from Nationals Park. Monument Realty with investment partner based Angelo, Gordon & Company filed plans this week with the Zoning Commission for the project.

Monument announced One M Street, the new 130,000 SF headquarters for the National Association of Broadcasters, in April.

The unit mix for 10 Van Street includes one, two and three-bedroom layouts as well as several two-bedroom  townhomes–the multi-level units with direct access from the street. The building will feature a rooftop pool and lounge, fitness center and other resident amenities.

The project architect is Gensler.

Proposed as for-sale units, 10 Van Street could ultimately become a rental project depending on the market, according to a press release from Monument.

Pending Zoning review, construction is scheduled to begin in the spring of 2016, concurrent with One M Street, and could deliver in 2018.

Van Street view looking South toward the ballpark.

Van Street view looking South toward the ballpark.

Featured image is the Southwest view looking North at South Capitol Street. Design by Gensler, courtesy of Monument Realty. 

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CAS Riegler Files Plans for St. Thomas Development

CAS Riegler Files Plans for St. Thomas Development

CAS Riegler filed plans for a new church and 56-unit condo building and addition to the historic St. Thomas Church in Dupont, 1772 Church St. NW. Riegler has spent the better part of the last 21 months creating and revising a plan that meets the requirements for a profitable development and the needs of the Episcopal parish while passing muster with the surrounding community.

The church selected CAS Riegler to purchase the property for redevelopment in late 2013. The developer will purchase a portion of the church lot and the church will use the funds to construct a new building to meet the needs of its growing parish. Currently the parish operates out of a former church hall; what was to have been a temporary solution when the historic church was burned by an arson in the 1970s.

The project has been through many rounds of revisions based on feedback from the surrounding community; many neighbors objected to the design because of the height and density it would bring to Church Street. After several hearings, the Historic Preservation Review Board approved the project at its July meeting.

The proposal filed Tuesday calls for a building with a maximum height of 70 feet and the new development will provide one level of below-grade parking with 36 parking spaces. The residential and church building are being presented as one structure through the zoning process. The project architect is Hickok Cole.

The developers are seeking relief from the Board of Zoning Adjustment because the church portion of the project will exceed the lot occupancy allowed on the site. The project will have a lot occupancy of 86.7%; the permitted residential lot occupancy is 80%.

The development team argues that the historic structure and the church’s financial limitations create a “practical difficulty” that necessitates the development scheme as proposed:

“The practical difficulty arises out of the presence of the Parish Hall in its location on the Property and the necessity of providing both the church and the residential building on the site. This is not a “self-imposed” hardship because the Church must maintain its historic presence on the Property, and the Parish Hall cannot be removed. As explained above, the Parish Hall is no longer an appropriate building for the Church, but the Church should not be expected to relocate because of construction challenges on the Property. Also, as described above, the Church does not have the funds necessary to construct a new building without leveraging the value of its land, which necessitates the construction of a residential building since that is the highest and best use of the Property, based on its zoning and location. ”

No hearing date is set.

Featured image is a rendering of the proposed development as submitted to the BZA.

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Harris Teeter Likely Headed to McMillan as Grocery Tenant

Harris Teeter Likely Headed to McMillan as Grocery Tenant

North Carolina-based Harris Teeter has signed a letter of intent to occupy the retail space set aside for a grocer at the McMillan sand filtration redevelopment site, developer Jair Lynch informed the community leaders last week. The store would take up about 53,000 square feet in the planned mixed-use residential and retail building.

The McMillan Sand Filtration Site is a 92-acre property north of Bloomingdale, near Washington Hospital Center, a 25-acre portion of which is poised for redevelopment by Vision McMillan Partners, a development team is comprised of Trammell Crow Company, EYA, and JAIR LYNCH. The project will be developed in phases, but when completed the planned unit development (PUD) project will include approximately 2 million square feet of gross floor area.

The Harris Teeter would occupy a portion of the building on Parcel 4, designed by MV+A Architects and David Jameson Architect, Inc., and developed by JAIR LYNCH Development Partners. The residential portion will total approximately 258,235 square feet of gross floor area, including 196 market-rate units and 85 senior-affordable units for seniors earning between 50% and 60% of the area medium income.

In a letter to the community JAIR LYNCH noted that slight alterations to the approved plans would be needed before Harris Teeter would officially sign a lease, but the developers expect the lease would be a done deal by this time next year (Summer/Fall 2016).

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