“There’s a…Circuit Transportation Bill that is coming up before Congress that we’re working on. It would be six years worth of funds that would support Union Station improvements…The private development, of course, is an entirely different matter,” says Mary Margaret Plumridge, Director of Marketing and Communications for the developer. “The Akridge development of Burnham Place at Union Station certainly would benefit from an enhanced Union Station, but the public and private projects are separate.”
Nonetheless, Akridge spokespeople say the Burham Place development team is in constant communication with Amtrak as they tweak a development scheme that will see new construction from the back of the train station, over in-use tracks, above the “Hopscotch” H Street Bridge and beyond. Before lying brick one, it’s a project that some are already valuing at over $1 billion.
“We are working on pre-development work that includes design and engineering studies,” says Plumridge. “We’re working with Amtrak through the design and engineering processes, the project requires that we build while the trains are running…We’re even having some very preliminary discussions with some potential [office] users.”Despite the incremental progress, a formal timeline for the project has yet to be and Akridge has also been unable to provide any new renderings of the façade, beyond the aerial jell-o mold shot (pictured) released in tandem with the project’s unveiling in 2006. Multiple inquires from DCmud to the project's architect, Shalom Baranes, have gone un-returned.