Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Then There Were Three at Howard Town Center

It may be slightly less exciting than the McCain-Obama matchup (only slightly), but the contenders for the on-again, off-again Howard Town Center project have now been narrowed to just three: Archstone-Smith, Armada Hoffler and CastleRock Partners. A Howard University representative yesterday confirmed that two other bidders associated with the $30 million project - Monument Realty and the Trammell Crow Company - have been ruled out by the University as potential developers.

This marks Trammell Crow's second loss of the HTC project. When the HTC was first proposed in 2003, the development company walked away with a $56 million contract - only to watch it fall through when the Duke Plan, a new zoning overlay for the area, was introduced, and some have suggested that Trammell Crow may still have an actionable claim against the university.

Development on the 2.2 acre parcel is said to include a 300-unit apartment complex, parking and 70,000 square feet of retail, which must include a grocer under the terms of the RFP. The Howard Town Center project will be built at the current site of several Howard-owned properties at 2100 Georgia Avenue that have fallen into disuse. A recent Howard acquisition at Georgia and W Street, the Bond Bread Building, is also to be utilized in the redevelopment efforts. Howard acquired the building from the District of Columbia this spring in a land swap long opposed by the tenants of Bond Bread, which had sued the city over their rights to the building. Howard issued an RFP for the project (again) last May. Group Goetz Architects will be designing the project for the winning developer, a design that is strongly encouraged to be LEED certified.

Howard’s Communications Department would not discuss a date for the selection of a development team, but construction is planned to begin in August 2009.


IMGoph on Nov 4, 2008, 12:50:00 PM said...

that's all the area it covers?

damn, i thought we'd actually see something replacing those parking lots all the way up to the mcdonalds, and all the way down to town.

i thought this would basically remake that area. this is kinda small potatoes...

Hunter on Nov 4, 2008, 1:03:00 PM said...

That is all that's coming down for certain. It remains to be seen how the selected developer will utilize the Howard-owned properties in the immediate area.

Anonymous said...

By the way, GGA has HORRIBLE designs. It's going to be a real eyesore... But... it is going to really improve that area. An area that needs as much help as it can get.

Anonymous said...

Can you confirm that your news is correct about GGA beign the chosen designer no matter who wins. Every team has their own designer on the team. Kind stinks if it is true. What sort of connection does GGA have with Howard?

Hunter on Nov 6, 2008, 12:16:00 PM said...

GGA has been contracted by Howard. Given their preferance for refurbishing older, office-type buildings, I'd wager that they're in charge of updated some of the older buildings, so they don't have to get demolished outright. Their impact on the rest of the project won't be apparent until Howard releases some designs.

Then again that might not be so soon...Howard reps are so unwilling to discuss this thing that you'd think they were working on the frickin' Manhattan Project.


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