Park Morton Negotiations Terminated — City Still Committed to Its Redevelopement
At the end of last week, the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development (DMPED) sent Landex Corporation, along with their partner the Warrenton Group, a letter giving notice of the District’s decision to terminate negotiations with Landex for the redevelopment of Park Morton. The letter acknowledges that Landex had been chosen as the Developer of Park Morton following DMPED’s Request for Proposals. The decision was announced by Mayor Fenty in October 2009.
However, since 2009 Landex has only been able to produce one project, the Avenue, an 83-unit affordable housing development with 27 replacement units. According to the letter, “since the completion of The Avenue in September 2012, the District and Developer have engaged in numerous attempts to make progress with negotiations for redevelopment of” Park Morton. However, nothing has come of these negotiations and the District is now of the opinion that the completion of a redeveloped Park Morton under the current circumstances will not likely occur.
What this means for the future of Park Morton is that the project will need to again go through a competition to find a new developer. Councilmember Graham responded to the news stating that the “decision is very disturbing news, because it really sets back this project.”
While I understand Graham’s concern, based on everything I’ve been able to learn about Park Morton in recent weeks, I actually think that this is positive news. The project was dead in the water as the District and Landex had reached an impasse. The termination of the agreement will allow the project to move forward again, dispite the appearance of starting over. Moreover, Graham has expressed that it is urgent that the District’s commitment to redeveloping Park Morton move forward quickly … and DMPED has responded that they can accelerate the competitive process.
The District needs to make every effort to get the redevelopment of Park Morton moving again as quickly as possible, and I will continue doing my part to keep this issue front and center.
Author’s Note: I was informed in 2013 that one of the hurdles to Park Morton’s redevelopment was the need for more land. I addressed this in a Post on November 1, 2013, urging the District to be more creative in identifying sites throughout Ward 1 — including the site of the former Bruce Monroe school — so that Park Morton could move forward with the greatest benefit and best chance for a successful resolution.Explore posts in the same categories: Development, Housing comment below, or link to this permanent URL from your own site.