Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Silver Spring Calls for More Residential Downtown

In addition to a new library and a new multi-modal transit center, and soon to be new residential project across the street, Silver Spring may get itself a development partner for yet another mixed-income rental housing near the intersection of Fenton and Bonifant Streets. Yesterday, the Montgomery County Department of Housing and Community Affairs released a request for qualifications (RFQ) for developers interested in forming a public-private partnership to build housing on 0.75 acres of County-owned property abutting the site of the proposed Silver Spring Library.

The County estimates that space would have the capacity for 120 units in 120,000 s.f. In return for a 99-year lease on the space, the County requires any developer to provide 30% of units at moderately priced levels, 30% as workforce housing and 40% as market rate units. The project would need to provide some on-site parking, but the County is encouraging creativity to minimize the need for parking, such as shared parking and flex car programs. The County also asks that the developer provide space for ground floor retail in the new building.

A few little hiccups make the site a little more complicated than most. First, the housing project cannot be built prior to the construction of the new library and any plans have to be coordinated with the library developer. Officials expect work to begin on the library site in mid 2010, though library construction will not start until officials have reached agreement on final design for the building, including how to incorporate the Purple Line, station and all, into the site. Second, some of the right-of-way for the proposed Purple line traverses the housing site as well, so any developer would need to work with the Maryland Transit Authority to make sure any development does not interfere with any potential future transit facility.

So if all that doesn't put a dent in your interest, submissions are due March 26, 2010 at 2 PM, a short list will be announced in April 2010, with follow-up details required by late May 2010.

Silver Spring real estate development news


Anonymous said...

"Soon to be new residential project across the street"? That project won't start constructin (in the best case scenario) for about two years.

Either way, I am really glad to see you guys covering all the fantastic development confirmed/proposed for downtown Silver Spring. We still have a long way to go, but this area has had such a remarkable transormation from the desolate, forgotten DTSS of a decade ago. Sure, the Foulger Pratt part of DTSS is vanilla, but there is so much more here than that...with so much more coming. Keep up the good work reporting on us and hopefully more of your readers will come see and experience our "town"

Critically Urban on Feb 3, 2010, 1:46:00 PM said...

I agree with Anonymous, but this site was going to be residential all along, so it's not like this is anything new. The only news here is that MoCo is putting out an RFQ for the site now to continue the previous plans.

Anonymous said...

Why does the county want any parking on this site at all, when there is an underutilized garage across the street?

Critically Urban on Feb 3, 2010, 3:24:00 PM said...

What garage is underutilized? The Wayne Avenue garage gets PACKED most days of the week usually almost every floor is 90%+ filled up to the roof. Either way, buyers in this new building wouldn't exactly want to pay every single day to park in the Wayne Avenue garage, especially when their spaces wouldn't be guaranteed.

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