Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Clark Breaks Ground on Arboretum Place


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
of hipsters to construction workers in the Atlas District a bit more even.

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.

Georgia based 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

18 comments:

IMGoph on Sep 15, 2010, 2:49:00 PM said...

do you have any links to plans (site plans, elevations) at all for this or for the aldi nearby? there has been next to nothing presented to the public here. you guys would be doing a HUGE service by showing anything!

Ken on Sep 15, 2010, 3:18:00 PM said...

IMGoph, there is a scarcity of information online, trust me that we searched. We'll see what we can do to find online plans.

IMGoph on Sep 15, 2010, 3:55:00 PM said...

if you can't find anything online, with your contacts, i hope you guys could get something emailed to you. thanks for the grunt work!

Anonymous said...

Don't forget Steuart Investments' planned apartments at the other end of the strip at 3rd and H, NE. A Giant grocery has been hinted at there as a first floor tenant.

Brooks Butler Hays on Sep 15, 2010, 5:27:00 PM said...

touché anon, we will look into that and get some more information on their time-line as soon as possible. looks like they were originally hoping to break ground this fall, so maybe there is more good news for h street yet. check out our old article on it in the meantime.

http://dcmud.blogspot.com/2009/10/grocery-store-and-apartments-coming-to.html

Anonymous said...

As nearby neighbors to Starburst, we are extremely excited about this new addition to the hood!

-Jordan

Anonymous said...

federal workers want affordable CONDOS, not apartments!

I hope Gray sets the developers straight and fast.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, but under a Gray administration, these apartments will be reserved for the poor unemployed people of ward 8

Anonymous said...

Do you know how large the units are (avg size)? I thought their original plan had something like 500 sq. ft. units.

Anonymous said...

Is Gray going to use Atlas District as his prize to prove he is serious about stopping "gentrification"? The designation as Midcity seems a little too "white" don't you think?

Anonymous said...

I don't know what's "white" about mid-city. Count me among the middle-class of DC that is devastated by the Grey election as the One who can stop Fenty's successes, but even under Fenty there were tons of new affordable projects added.

Anonymous said...

H St area is too "black", it'll be nice to get some "brown" and "white" people.

Anonymous said...

1. I hope this is a better design thatn Clark's Fort Totten project, which looks like it belongs in Herndon.

2. It is sad that this is not a ten-stroy high-rise concrete building so it can help pay for the new Streetcar line with higher taxes to DC.

Anonymous said...

How is Vince Gray going to set anyone straight?

A 400+ unit condo deal never happens under the new HUD rules and lending restrictions. No one will loan the money to build the site when you have to have 50% presales. And affordable - what does that really mean? Who doesn't want that, but whoever builds anything has to make a buck or the parcel stays as-is. They won't sell or rent it for anything less than it's worth, and they won't build it unless they make a certain profit.

Nothing Gray could or should do about it.

Anonymous said...

Uh. How does Ward 5 constitutes as Ward 8? Get your Wards Straight.

Rayful Edmond said...

Delta Tower (affordable senior living) was supposed to build a second tower at the Starburst. Plans were crushed in 08.

Murphy said...

"This will be the first major residential project to get underway in the H Street vicinity."

I assume you mean the first major project since the economic downtown? What about Senate Square?

Ken on Sep 17, 2010, 9:41:00 AM said...

Murphy,
Yes, point taken. We meant, though we didn't say, the first recent project, i.e. since the downturn, though Senate Square is at the opposite end, so I'm not sure its the same neighborhood.

 

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