Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Groundbreaking at 1150 Ripley Street


Minor construction work has now begun at 1150 Ripley Street in Silver Spring, but developer Washington Property Company will wait until next Tuesday to officially celebrate the groundbreaking of their 16-story multi-family building. The 306,000 s.f. building will add 286 rental units, and is being heralded by developers as the "first major construction project within the Ripley District in almost 20 years." On October 5th, Washington Property Company President Charles K. Nulsen III will be joined by Montgomery County officials to put a ceremonial shovel in the ground and provide remarks on the bright future of the Ripley District, including specifics on several other "exciting development
plans" in the area.

The building design, a generous use of glass textured by streaking and crisscrossing lines of metal as well as tall brick columns, is courtesy of the Lessard Group. Sitting on 1.16 acres of land, the apartment building will offer the usual assortment of amenities: business center, conference rooms, rec rooms, and a fitness center. Stocked with the standard array of studios and one and two bedrooms, the structure will stand atop three and a half levels of below grade parking totaling over 300 spaces. The ground floor will feature 7,000 s.f. of service retail.

The Ripley District, a triangular parcel of land in downtown Silver Spring, is bounded by Bonifant Street, Georgia Avenue, and the CSX Railroad. Sitting adjacent to the MARC railway and Silver Spring Transit Center, this is the type of transit-oriented development that county officials are hoping to encourage. The county’s Department of Housing and Community Affairs has offered $5 million in mezzanine financing, and hopes their visible cooperation and financial assistance will spur future smart growth in the area.

Silver Spring, and specifically the Ripley District, will look to mimic Bethesda and Arlington by sporting horse blinders, ignoring the recession, and plowing ahead. Officials will steer new developments to be "organized around open spaces, surrounded by a mix of high-density office and apartment buildings, with bike trails and pedestrian routes connecting residents to the nearby Paul S. Sarbanes Transit Center and the Metropolitan Branch Trail to Union Station in downtown Washington, D.C." Home Properties' Ripley Street North mixed-use development will look to follow this blueprint and give County officials another reason to smile, but no word on impending construction has been given. The plan for the Shalom-Baranes-designed 200 ft. residential tower and accompanying 80 ft mixed-use building was approved in 2008.

S.E. Foster, a subsidiary of the Paradigm Companies, is heading up general contracting duties, and will deliver the first units in roughly eighteen months. Full delivery is expected in approximately two years.

Silver Spring, MD Real Estate Development News

9 comments:

Critically Urban on Sep 29, 2010, 12:17:00 PM said...

It's great to see this moving. Hopefully it will give Home Properties incentive to finally begin construction on their (more ambitious and attractive) project across the street.

Anonymous said...

Great project. I am slightly worried that Downtown Silver Spring is getting too residential, though. Increasing the number of jobs and office buildings is key to making the community as "walkable" as possible - the fewer people commuting to DC and VA the better.

Anonymous said...

The nature of our economy is that even if some new Silver Springers find work near by, what says they won't be transfered, laid off, or find a better opportunity in Reston. The more residential, the better because that will encourage good retailers from coming here. Go Charlie!!!

Critically Urban on Sep 29, 2010, 1:30:00 PM said...

There are a number of office projects in the works, namely those on top of City Place Mall, and along Georgia Ave, on the Lee-owned parking lot as part of the Fillmore project approval, as well as next to the Crowne Plaza/office building. I also believe that Studio Plaza, the Fenton Village project, is supposed to include some office space. If only these projects would get off the ground.

Anonymous said...

This is fantastic news! In just a few years this whole area will be very much transformed by this project, the HP project and the transit center. Add in the MetBranch Trail, Purple Line and other planned office/hotel/residential developments in DTSS and we'll continue to build on the incredible renaissance of SS. Now, if we could just get the county to build some vehicular/pedestrian connections between EW Highway and the Ripley District...it would be great to rebuild the street grid that is cut off by the metro/csx rail tracks. Woo hoo go Silver Spring.

Critically Urban on Sep 29, 2010, 2:31:00 PM said...

I agree with the last anonymous poster. Either light and airy pedestrian/vehicular tunnels need to be built under the tracks to connect the Ripley District to the East-West Hwy/South Silver Spring district, or pedestrian bridges need to be built over the tracks. I have no problem with pedestrian bridges over train tracks. Over streets connecting libraries to parking garages however...big problem.

Anonymous said...

I'm optimistic enough about DTSS and the inside the beltway economy to think we can definately support more Class A office space. But, like you mentioned, it doesn't seem that any of the commerical projects are moving forward. I'm just worried that NoMa is sucking up a lot of companies that might otherwise migrate to DTSS.

Anonymous said...

if anything those companies would be moving to Arlington or Fairfax instead of NoMa. Virginia is viewed as way more competitive and business friendly compared to maryland for companies looking to move out of the district.

Anonymous said...

I'd assume Fairfax would be way cheaper than NoMa or DTSS - it's way out there, has terrible traffic, isn't metro accessible, etc.

 

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