William C Smith Company has unveiled initial plans for the first of 1100 new residential units in southeast DC, some of which will start early next year. The first set of new condos, Brownstein Commons, is planned for the site of the recently-destroyed Trenton Terrace Apartments, located on the 1100 block of Mississippi Ave, SE. Brownstein Commons will share that plot of land with a second William C Smith development, Archer Park, to create a total of 240 new residences for Ward 8. The developer is planning to begin construction on the 234,000-s.f. project in the Spring of 2008.
As a result of focus groups held by William C Smith (who we shall now refer to, simply, as "Bill"), the developer believes that a large unsatiated demand for homeownership opportunities exists in the neighborhood. Bill has responded accordingly, planning to inject a large amount of for-sale projects into Ward 8 in the coming years. A source within Bill opined that the community is underserved for housing, resulting in DC losing residents to PG County for lack of affordable homes in Ward 8.
The current project is set to be completed in phases; Archer Park, strictly a rental community, will serve as phase one of the development and will be completed first, starting next spring. Design plans call for the construction of 66-affordable, two and three bedroom rental units reserved for families below 60% AMI - the rental portion is expected to cost more than $9 million and is being designed by SK&I Architecture. Brownstein Commons, on the other hand, will be comprised of 174 brand-spanking-new workforce housing condominiums, for families between 50% and 80% AMI, and will cost an estimated $36 million. Bill expects construction on the condos to begin in the Spring of 2009.
WCS has heavily focused their developments on areas east of the Anacostia River. On December 7th, the first new grocery store in 30 years will be opened in Ward 8 at the Shops at Park Village, a 112,000 s.f. retail project that WCS is just finishing at the intersection of Stanton and Alabama Ave, SE. The retail center will also be home to a Wachovia Bank, a hardware store, insurance company and dry cleaner. Other projects completed by the firm include Ashford Court, which began selling early this year, and The Villages of Parklands. In total, the firm has added more than 5,000 housing units to the District, at a total value of more than $250 million.