Posted tagged ‘Development’

Checking Progress at the Linens of the Week Development on Lamont Street

February 23, 2017

Thus far, my review of the development that is turning the old Alsco/Linens of the Week plant into new housing for the area has been from the front of the buildings on Lamont Street. Taking advice from a friend that past weekend, I checked out the development from the alley. Below are some photos showing the significant progress they’ve made so far.

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Efforts to Redevelop Hebrew Home Property Still Moving Along

February 10, 2017
The former Hebrew Home and Robeson School site at 1125 Spring Road.

The former Hebrew Home and Robeson School site at 1125 Spring Road.

The District’s efforts to find a developer for the former Hebrew Home for the Aged at 1125 Spring Road are making progress. Two public meetings were held to solicit community input through the OurRFP process, one on April 9, 2016, and a follow up meeting on June 2, 2016. Following these meetings, the RFP was issued July 1, 2016.

The Office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development (DMPED) received nine proposals from the following development teams in response to the RFP:

  • Borger Management and Spectrum Management
  • Gilbane Development Company and NHT-Enterprise
  • Duball and Bundy Development Corp.
  • Community Preservation and Development Corporation (CPDC) and NVR
  • Telesis Corp.
  • Mission First, UrbanMatters Development and Lock7 Development
  • NHP Foundation, Fivesquares Development, and Warrenton Group
  • Victory Housing and Brinshore Development
  • Bozzuto Homes and The Menkiti Group

The next step in the process will be for DMPED to coordinate with ANCs 1A and 4C, and the community, to review the concepts and garner comments on which proposals are considered most promising. This could happen withing the next few weeks with the ANCs considering formal positions at their March meetings.

Zoning Commission Votes Unanimously in Support of a New Park Morton

February 1, 2017
Revised design for the Park Morton apartment building at the Bruce Monroe site.

Revised design for the Park Morton apartment building at the Bruce Monroe site.

On Monday evening January 30th, the Zoning Commission voted unanimously in support of both Zoning Cases related to the redevelopment of Park Morton (cases 16-11 and 16-12 (watch video of meetings here)). The National Capitol Planning Commission (NCPC) will now have 30 days to review and comment on the Planned Unit Development package, and following the NCPC the projects will go back to the Zoning Commission for final action. This is expected to occur in early March.

The projects the Commissioners approved on January 30th incorporate some revisions and clarifications that were a result of the hearings held on December 5th and 8th. Two of the more important changes for the Bruce Monroe site were:

  • Revised architectural design motif for the townhomes to better integrate them into the existing architectural context. The revised design elements include revised materials and materials palatte that incorporate a warmer color scheme; further defined brick detailing that includes brick banding and brick soldier courses; revised window mullion design that creates windows of a vertical proportion for a more residential character; and revised window panel material to brick with banding; and,
  • Prior to the issuance of a Building Permit for the multi-family building, the Applicant shall demonstrate to the Zoning Administrator that DMPED will convey the PUD Site to Park View Community Partners pursuant to a 99 year ground lease. The ground lease will contain a provision wherein DMPED agrees that a minimum of 44,000 square feet of land area in Square 2890 identified as a public park shown on Sheet G10 of the Architectural Plans and Elevations, dated January 9, 2017, will only be used for park and recreation uses for the term of the ground lease. The Applicant shall have the right to use a portion of the park area as a temporary staging area during construction of the Project.

The changes listed above addressed the concern that the land set aside for the park will actually be improved as a park, and the concern by the Commission that the color of brick originally chosen didn’t compliment the existing neighborhood well and would be difficult to keep clean.

Below are renderings showing the new (approved) brick color for the buildings to be built at the Bruce Monroe site compared to the original proposal.

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(Renderings showing approved (above) and original (below) brick choices for the buildings designed for the Bruce Monroe site.)

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More Work Begun on Park Road, NW

January 13, 2017
Former church at 625 Park Road, NW.

Former church at 625 Park Road, NW.

Interior work on the historic Park Road church building has begun, which is great to see. In checking permit applications, I found that a building permit was issued on December 5, 2016, with the following scope of work:

“addition alteation and repair to an existing 2 story with cellar historically registered church to convert it to a 3 story with cellar and mezzanine, 38 unit apartment house, to include partial demolition of existing SFD on same lot and underpining of existing structure as per plans and approved BZA.”

The rowhouse at 633 Park Road is also part of the property and the approved BZA plans. In looking at permits for that address, a raze permit was approved on September 20, 2016, to raze the “2 story small semi – detached town house (row house).” Work was also observed here too.

633-park-road-construction(Rear of 633 and 635 Park Road, NW)

547 Park Road Popping Up

January 9, 2017

img_20321(Construction at 547 Park Road, NW)

If you’ve been down Park Road lately, you may have noticed that 547 Park Road is popping up. From a building permit issued on December 14, 2016, (B1605146), the third floor addition over the existing footprint was approved, including full Structural and MEP. The building will also change its use from a single family dwelling to two family flat. This project was approved as a matter-of-right, meaning the permit did not require ANC review of Board of Zoning Adjustment approval. In this case, the building can be no more than two units or more than 35 ft. in height.

In the coming years, the 500-600 block of Park Road appears to be headed for significant changes. While the most significant change will be the redevelopment of Park Morton on the south side of the street, the owner of 503 Park Road submitted an application to raze the house there on December 13th, 549 Park Road sought approval to convert that building into a 3-unit building at the beginning of 2016, and the apartment building at 525 Park Road is in the midst of being redeveloped into a building that has larger apartments units.

Signs of Progress at Otis and Georgia Avenue

January 3, 2017

Knowing that there are a number of anticipated development sites on Georgia Avenue that haven’t seemed to be moving, it is encouraging to see signs of progress at 3557-3559 Georgia Avenue (southeast corner of Georgia and Otis). I short while ago the covered walkways went up to protect pedestrians, and recently a pile driver has arrived on site.

The project — named the “V” — received approval from the BZA in January 2013, so its good to see this one finally get started.

img_2017(View of the site from the northeast on Otis Place)

img_2015(View of the site from the west on Georgia Avenue)

Park Morton Redevelopment Effort Clears Significant Hurdle, Receives Council Approval

December 21, 2016

bruce-monroe-site(Rendering of the Bruce Monroe site from the southeast showing park and building locations as proposed in Zoning Case 16-11.)

Yesterday, the Council of the District of Columbia voted unanimously at their Committee of the Whole meeting (watch meeting) to place the Bruce Monroe surplus and disposition resolutions on the consent agenda for their final Legislative Meeting of 2016, at which they were approved later in the day. Prior to the vote, Councilmembers Nadeau, Grosso, Bonds, and May each spoke about the importance of the project and stated their support.

Particularly noteworthy were the comments from Councilmembers Grosso and May. Councilmember Grosso acknowledged having received many emails and calls both supporting and opposing the plan to use the Bruce Monroe site as part of the Park Morton development, but stated strongly that he would be supporting the effort that would allow the District to fulfill its promise to the Park Morton residents. He also noted on a personal level that he grew up in the neighborhood and in his youth the site resembled a jail in the middle of the community with a fence around it, and not a park. Councilmember May, for her part, stated that while she rarely spoke on issues located outside her ward she would be voting in support. She also stated that she was familiar with the needs of the Park Morton residents and that whether in Ward 8 or any other Ward of the city all residents deserve quality housing and a safe place to live.

The Council’s  approval of both the Bruce Monroe surplus and disposition resolutions supports the effort for the site to be used as the “Build First” site in the District’s effort to replace the Park Morton Housing Complex with a new mixed-income community without displacing Park Morton families from the community. The Zoning Commission is scheduled to take action on the related Park Morton Planned Unit Development cases on January 30, 2017, following two hearings held earlier this month (brief overview of zoning hearings here).

Prior to the Council action, Advisory Neighborhood Commission 1A voted in early 2016 to support the surplus and disposition of the Bruce Monroe site for the Park Morton effort with the condition that the District include a large, permanent park as part of the redevelopment effort. The District Government has recognized this condition and 1.02 acres of the site will be redeveloped as a permanent park with programming to be determined with input from the community. A 6,700 sq. ft. central green is also planned for Morton Street as part of the redevelopment project. Advisory Neighborhood Commission 1A will also continue to explore opportunities to improve, create, and expand public access to park spaces in the Columbia Heights, Park View, and Pleasant Plains neighborhoods as it considers future development and engages in the Comprehensive Plan amendment process.

In addition to preserving 147 public housing units and establishing new permanent park spaces, the Park Morton redevelopment effort will increase area housing for seniors and families at all income levels. The project will also have a significant and long-lasting positive impact on lower Georgia Avenue. In addition to increasing area housing options, it will also improve public safety and encourage development along the corridor. By aligning new roads and reknitting the development on Morton Street into the surrounding community, blind alleys and the Morton Street cul-de-sac will be removed – a configuration that is not conducive to public safety. And by removing the uncertainty on whether the redevelopment of Park Morton will move forward, the District will encourage developers who own property on Georgia Avenue to move forward with their respective projects.


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