The Maryland Avenue ray of the officially completed and freshly paved Starburst Intersection has a brand new mixed-use, multi-family development in its future. Like most developments, Arboretum Place, a planned apartment community at 1600 Maryland Avenue, NE, has been continuously delayed by financing complications, originally hoping to break ground in early 2009. But Clark Realty spokeswoman Joy Lutes has confirmed that construction on the project broke ground earlier this month, making the ratio
This will be the first major residential project to get underway in the H Street
vicinity. "We are excited to undertake this project in an area of the city that has continued to experience growth even during the economic downturn and be able to contribute to this historic and vibrant neighborhood," says Clark Development Executive Tracey Thomm.
Originally billed as a 430-unit condo/apartment project, only a smaller initial phase is officially in the works. For the first phase, the $36 million development will deliver 257 apartments, a 250 space parking garage, and 5,000 s.f. ground-floor retail. Units will be offered in a variety of types and sizes: studios as well as one and two bedrooms. According to the developer, the project will bring "high-quality housing to an area that has not benefited from new residential development in many years." Respecting the eclectic and independent nature of the Atlas District, developers say they intend to link up local businesses with the new retail spaces. Clark Realty will also serve as general contractor as the development team aims to deliver the first residencies in the spring of 2012.
Preston Partnership provided architectural designs that call for sharp angles and a busy, modern facade of dark red brick, cement, and large glassy bays. The liberal use of glass will offer extensive sight lines into the large central courtyard. Aside from supplying enjoyable outdoor public space, the courtyard helps to disrupt the massing of the buildings, allowing interesting interplays of space, and also blending the development more smoothly with the character of the surrounding residential neighborhoods. Like most residential developments these days, developers have qualified the project with the "luxury" tag, meaning a pool, a business center, a gym, indoor half basketball court, entertainment space, and landscaped gardens complete with fireplace and "meditation courtyard" are all included.
Although H Street currently offers a growing plethora of chic boutiques, trendy bars, and hip restaurants, the area still retains some grittiness: an overabundance of suspect take-out Chinese food spots, liquor stores, and boarded store-fronts. Adding to the aesthetic blight of the area is the scarred H Street, ripped up and littered with orange cones and Jersey barriers while it awaits the ever-delayed streetcars. The only other major residential development on the strip, The Rappaport Companies' large mixed-use redevelopment project running on the south side of H Street between 8th and 10th has been in the works for over three years now, but won't be moving forward soon. Arboretum Place may serve as a beacon of hope, like the Atlas District, a dark horse neighborhood that might challenge 14th & U (or Midcity, if the branding sticks) for the title of most artsy alternative 'hood.
Washington D.C. Real Estate Development News