The project is under the purview of Blue Sky Housing (not the similarly-named Blue Skye Development), a local developer whose last publicized project was the renovation and conversion of two Hanover Place NW apartment buildings into condominiums. Earle "Chico" Horton, a partner with the Graves & Horton LLC law firm and Blue Sky principal, tells DCmud that all of the units will feature 2 bedrooms and 2 ½ baths, in addition to amenities like “10 foot ceilings and high-end finishes.” Once completed in February, prices on ground floor units will start around $330,000, while top floor units will be "in the range of $480,000 to $500,000." Caltec Construction is serving as general contractor.
The project stands feet from the corner of 8th Street and Florida Avenue NW – an area that has hosted vacant lots since long before developers renewed their interest in the historic Shaw community. “Whatever structures were there were probably damaged in the 14th Street riots [of 1968] and subsequently torn down. It’s easily been over 20 years since there’s been construction at the site,” said Horton. ‘“Once people get financing, I think they’ll be a lot in store for the area. I was one of the original buyers of Harrison Square back in 2000. I’ve been in the area for a while and have seen the growth, which has been good.”
Indeed, growth is continuing unabated in the neighborhood. A few blocks away Castlerock Partners will be constructing the sprawling Howard Town Center project, while a parcel literally around the corner at the 9th and U Streets NW – currently the site of a weekly flea market - has been slated for redevelopment by the Washington Metro Area Transit Authority. Those projects are set to join Ellis’ recently-approved redevelopment of the Howard Theater, and other in-the-works efforts like Broadcast Center One, the Wonder Bread Factory and O Street Market complex, as possible additions to the Shaw of the new millennium's second decade.