The District received proposals from Buccini/Pollin Group; Clark Realty Capital (which recently won the Poplar Point bid); Donohoe Development Co and Holland Development Group; JBG Cos.; MVT Associates, LLC; NDC-Jarvis; and Potomac Investment Properties, Inc.
"This is really one of the last sites left in the Mount Vernon Triangle," Albert said, speaking of the lot that will almost certainly have competition nearby, as several developments have been announced in the immediate vicinity. "This neighborhood has basically sprung up overnight and this site presents a great opportunity to add some dynamic uses to better serve the existing community and the new mix of office, retail and housing." The site will have the advantage of high visibility on Massachusetts Avenue, making it a dream at least for the marketers.
Proposals for the site include high-end retail such as hotels, restaurants, cafes, fitness clubs, spas and live entertainment venues. Some also included a residential aspect with apartments and condominiums (didn't they get the word that no one would finance condos?), which would include 30% affordable housing, according to the District's rules. Each plan featured underground parking with 100-plus spaces.
NDC-Jarvis proposed building a luxury boutique hotel connected to upscale condominiums (see rendering below), with the pair sharing concierge services and amenities. Proposed retail included a small home furnishings store, an upscale restaurant to serve the hotel and neighborhood. A small jazz performance venue would also be on the site.
"I think we are very invested in this neighborhood," said Adrian Washington, Principal with NDC, and former Anacostia Waterfront Commission frontman, whose current company has performed a number of apartment renovations and conversions throughout DC. "I think our proposal would be a great addition to neighborhood. It's the type of development that is not in the neighborhood right now. It is a boutique, high-end, architecturally distinctive project. And the restaurant would be a great addition to the neighborhood."
Robert Holland of Holland Development Group, co-developer with Donohoe Development Co., said their design would include a Shalom Baranes-designed hotel. "As far as I know, many of the developers were proposing hotel/apartments, a mixed-use development, with some local neighborhood retail," Holland said. "Our difference is that we have identified a Spanish hotel chain to go in there, along with a 10,000-s.f. restaurant jazz venue. It's a London-based established jazz club, not a big commercial destination jazz club, but more local, with very excellent food. It should be a great a compliment to the neighborhood."
Mount Vernon Triangle spans 15 blocks over 30 acres, and already includes more than four million square feet of development, such as CityVista, which is well into the back nine of its 441-unit condo project next door.
The Office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development will study the proposals over the next few weeks and will schedule a public meeting for the community to hear presentations from each of the development teams.
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