Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Parkside Development On The Skids

For those who've grown weary of all the Benning Road plans for development, with little action to follow, the worst fears may have been confirmed on Monday evening at the Zoning Commission hearing. The mammoth Ward 7 redevelopment project that Parkside Residential, LLC representatives told the Zoning Commission in 2006 was a "landmark Planned Unit Development," has all but lost its early momentum. Whether it's the recent rains, some runaway Gulf oil slicks, or the economic downturn, much of the initial proposal has lost traction. The Commission recently denied the request of Lano Parcel 12, LLC for a two year extension of their first Parkside PUD, which took effect April 13, 2007 and expires October of next year.

The entire 15-acre Parkside project, located between Kenilworth Park and the Anacostia Freeway, was expected to become a massive mixed use development, bringing over 1,500 units of both affordable and market rate housing, 500,000 s.f. of office space, and at least 30,000 s.f. of neighborhood-serving retail. The Kenilworth Parkside area has been targeted by the District and the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development as a site in desperate need of improvement. Given its proximity to the waterfront, the Benning Metro Station, and three of the Great Streets Programs, the Washington Metro Area Transit Authority (WMATA) and the District Department of Transportation (DDOT), among other entities and initiatives, are in strong support of the proposed transformation.

In 2008, the Zoning Commission approved the first Second Stage PUD for three of the ten building blocks. Affordable senior living housing is planned and approved for Block A, B, and C. Being that the Second Stage PUD was granted for an area less than the original First Stage approval, Parkside Residential was accorded three years to submit the rest of their Second Stage PUD applications for review by Zoning. Applications for two more blocks are currently pending, and the submission of Second Stage plans for a third block are said to be in the works and should be filed soon. This would amount to Second Stage plans for a total of six blocks out of the original ten. But that's four blocks too few. The venture's representative pleaded in a recent document that this was "significant progress given the size of the project and the recent economic conditions." The Zoning Commission was apparently unmoved, and the deadline for all Second Stage applications remains October 3, 2011. This still leaves over a year left for the parties involved to shore up resources and finalize plans for the remaining four blocks. But given the the already requested extension, and characterization of meeting such a deadline as "not possible" despite their "every effort," that seems unlikely to happen.

The Lano Parcel 12 LLC and the Parkside Residential LLC are both multiparty ventures between Bank of America Community Development Corporation, Lano International, City Interest, and Marshall Heights Community Development Organization. The majority of design plans are being shouldered by Urban Design Associates in Pittsburgh.

Washington DC real estate development news


Anonymous said...

What I do not understand is why every other part of DC is either being developed or plans for development are underway, but when it comes down to this side of the District, which by the way has the most land, either development plans are going south or the companies and associations who've initially had plans to develop this area are now dragging the feet. Sometimes you have to go beyond looks. I've lived in DC-all parts, for the bulk of my life and I remember when Columbia Heights was a slum, U Street was barren, Southwest was extremely hood, Very few were able to surpass their twenties on the H Street Corridor, and Chinatown was exactly that, and the only ritzy and developed areas were Friendship Heights, Georgetown, Downtown, and Capitol Hill. So there is no excuse to not develop this side of DC, based on looks. This area is not only in severe need of development and revitalization, but could deem the most beneficial to businesses and corporations. It is near major highways-295,395, Pennsylvania Avenue. It is Metro Accessible, not far from FedEx field, near the new DC. Department of Employment Services, the Newly Developed up and coming H Street Corridor and New York Avenue,and has much more to offer. These are the considerations that must be taken into account. Not just on the way the area looks.

Rayful Edmond said...

to 11:54, all true. But you're not going to get the project financed if you can't project rental growth for at least 4 to 5 years out.

Focus on jobs first, then development.

Anonymous said...

Why is having nothing developed a better outcome than having most of the site developed? What on earth is the Zoning Board's rationale? Have they not noticed we've been in an unprecedented recession with commercial real estate grinding to a halt? They should be thrilled that Parkside Residential LLC has as much ready for development as they do, given these circumstances. Ward 7 loses again.

Anonymous said...

If there is not development and growth, then how do you expect for there to be any jobs. There would have to be businesses available in order for there to be a spike in employment due to the businesses in an area in need of development. That comment is just B.S.

Anonymous said...

It is sickening and disheartening at the same time. What I am tired of hearing or reading when concerning Wards 7 and 8 is how the area can not be developed due to economic hardships. However, these economic times are not stopping or halting any growth and development in other areas of the District such as; all of NW, the H Street/N.Y. Avenue Corridor, Rhode Island Avenue, S.W., etc. It may have took damn near 20 years for the projects in those previously mentioned areas to get off the ground and on the way, but once it started, it did not stop. So the theory of any developments not being produced for 4-5 years in this section of the city is a cop out.The focus is being too much on the NW section of the city and this section of the city has and is continued being treated as if it is not even part of the city or even worse, it is being treated as if it does not even exist. Say what you will but this is the truth and you know it just as everyone else does.

Anonymous said...

Oh yeah, by the way, on the weekends, the associates of Wiley Rein are sponsoring a series of community service events on which the Saturday, July 17th from 9am-12pm. a clean up of the Newly Developed Marvin Gaye Park will take place. For all of those who are interested, you are more than welcome to participate. Be a part of the community and take action. We'd really appreciate it.

Peter J Farrell on Jul 16, 2010, 3:16:00 PM said...

If the writer of the blog entry on the Parkside PUD had contacted the developer prior to posting the entry, several of the inaccuracies in the posting could have been cleared up. It is true that the Zoning Commission denied “without prejudice” our application for extension of the First Stage PUD Order. The Zoning Commission felt that the request was “premature” because more than a year remained on the existing order. We have been asked to resubmit in October, thus the denial without prejudice. The writer’s assumption that little progress has been made on the Parkside PUD development could not be further from the truth. Two Second Stage PUD applications have already been approved by the Zoning Commission and those projects are moving forward and two more Second Stage PUD applications have already been filed. Despite the severe downturn in the real estate market, CityInterests is still on track to deliver a landmark PUD development at Parkside.
Peter Farrell, Partner
CityInterests, LLC

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