While some DC area developers of late have been forced to convert condos to rental apartments in the face of mounting economic woes, others have abandoned the residential component of their upcoming projects altogether. No surprise there, but counting the toll on the lost housing supply is patchy. But one such casualty is Combined Properties, Inc.'s proposed redevelopment of an Adams Morgan retail strip at 1755-59 Columbia Road, NW.
After acquiring the property in 2004, the developer initially planned to demolish the 5,000 square foot facility currently on the site and build a new five-story, mixed-use building in its stead. The untitled project was said to include a level of ground-floor retail (possibly a restaurant), along with four-stories of new residential housing and an underground parking garage at the intersection of Columbia Road and Champlain Street, NW. Dorsky Hodgson Parrish Yue had been named as architects for the development.
Now, it would appear that the FootLocker and Popeye’s locations currently embedded have received a stay of execution. A source within Combined Properties tells DCMud that the “project has been downsized to retail only” and that details concerning the newly-rejiggered project “should be available in about six weeks."
The project would have been a homecoming of sorts for Combined Properties, as the development corporation that was founded by entrepreneur Herbert H. Haft, who began his real estate empire with a single drug store once located in Adams Morgan, just a few blocks away at the intersection of Columbia Road and 18th Street, NW. Haft also founded a number of recognizable national enterprises before his death in 2004, including Trak Auto and Crown Books.