Capitol Hill Oasis" sounds like the place to be, especially after a long, frustrating day amidst the incessant bickering on the actual Hill's desert of political disputation. But unless you consider "SoFlo" (South of Florida Ave) and "Capitol Hill" interchangeable monikers, and/or your idea of an "oasis" is eight dingy, brown brick prefab townhomes instead of gushing springs of purified water, palm trees, and lush fauna, then you're likely to be disappointed after visiting the residential project at 12th Street and Florida Ave, NE. While the marketing may be clever, it doesn't seem to be swaying any would-be buyers, as the homes at 915 thru 935 12th Street, NE, completed in mid 2008, remain vacant and unspoken for, with no one taking them up on the original $1.5m asking price (long since cut in half). But the inability to find tenants for the initial eight houses hasn't deterred developers 12th Street Partners, LLC and G. B. Herndon & Associates, Inc from pressing forward, as phase two of the development began recently.
Prudential Carruthers says that the units are zoned for commercial use, so the developers would consider leasing to small businesses if they continue to have trouble selling and/or leasing to full time residents. Kaye also explained that while they have not officially leased or sold any units, they have had communication of sincere, solid interest from several parties (his words). Even if there were deals in place, the units won't be ready for occupancy until mid October, he elaborated, when some basic utilities installation for phase two is completed.
Deluxe Homes in Pennsylvania, where the pieces of these assembled modular homes were produced, are very knowledgeable about the District's historic rowhouse architecture. Tim Brown at Urban Turf contends that: "When the units are finally completed, it is nearly impossible to differentiate modular homes from homes built with traditional construction methods." But even Paul Wilson, an architectural consultant on the project (in a very "limited role"), said that while prefab housing makes the construction process easier and more cost effective, and also allows better quality control, it can also result in a definite "cookie cutter look." While the exterior might not be exactly distinguished, the amenities package may appeal to the fitness-averse home buyer, as each of the completed units contains an in-house elevator so residents of the lazy persuasion won't have to think about climbing all the way to the fourth floor.
Washington D.C. Real Estate Development News