Just south of the Nationals stadium, one of the last remnants of the area's industrial past will soon fall, making way for 1.1 million s.f. of residential, office, retail and public access to the riverfront. Despite the progress, the wait time for new apartments, condos, restaurants, shops and water features continues to increase, with construction likely pushed back to 2013, at least.
The development team behind the long imagined mixed-use RiverFront on the Anacostia, located along the unit block of Potomac Avenue, SE, in the Capitol Riverfront area, asserts that the project is moving forward, albeit slowly due to the decision to deliver a residential building in the first phase, and not office space, as the PUD currently allows.
David deVilliers, president of Florida Rock Properties, the project developer and wholly owned subsidiary of land owner Patriot Transportation Holding Inc., confirmed that the first phase switch - announced this summer - is still being pursued, and that an informal process is currently ongoing in order to prepare a formal filing with the Office of Zoning to rezone the PUD in the "next 30 to 60 days."
deVilliers said he hopes Zoning will be "quick" to approve the request, but he is realistic about the time required to pursue the market-driven change. After approval, if granted, construction drawings will take approximately 9 months, followed by the several-month-long permitting process, resulting in construction likely to begin in 2013.
Meanwhile, the defunct concrete plant - Florida Rock - currently on site will be razed in the coming months. Activity at the plant wound down in mid-September, and a raze permit was issued last week, allowing demolition to begin, to be followed by environmental remediation.
In the year-long interim, the site could be used for something, but just what remains to be seen. Ted Skirbunt with the Capitol Riverfront BID acknowledged that while there probably won’t be any use before next summer, the BID has, and continues, to discuss potential uses with MRP and FRP.
Coinciding with the July announcement of the rezoning pursuit, was disclosure that local Midatlantic Realty Partners LLC, (MRP), founded by Fred Rothmeijer, came on board to partner with Florida Rock Properties on the stalled development, bringing with it $4.5 million in capital. Due to previous difficulty securing financing for the project - conception of which dates back to the '90s - the PUD was given a two-year time extension in 2009.
deVillers added that the partnership with MRP, under the leadership of Rothmiejer, is going well and the team is "fully engaged" in the project and committed to moving forward with the rezoning process, soon.
Washington D.C. real estate development news