Thursday, October 13, 2011

Buildings Gone on Wilson Boulevard, Construction "By November"

Zom Inc., developer of USAA Real Estate's transit-oriented residential and retail project at 1900/1916 Wilson Boulevard, asserted in July that construction would be underway "this fall;" and today, Graham Hatcher, VP of construction for Zom again stood behind a November start date, adding that general contractors are bidding on the project this week.

Both buildings previously on site - Hollywood Video and an office - have been razed in anticipation of new construction; however, according to Arlington County Inspection Services, two building permits applied for by Zom, in July and September, are trudging through inspection and zoning reviews, with one permit ready to be picked up by the developer, revised and resubmitted, and the other awaiting review by zoning before it will be released back to the development team.

The design, by Torti Gallas and Partners, was approved by the County last year, with only a few minor changes taking place in the schematics since that time, explains Michael Parker, project manager and Torti Gallas architect.

For one, the residential entryway was relocated further down Clarendon Boulevard, where it could have 20' high ceilings, combating digs by Country reviewers that the initial entryway location (at the corner of Troy and Clarendon) was "cavelike." Additionally, Juliet balconies were added to 33 residential units along Troy, Clarendon and Wilson Boulevard to "add texture to the building." Lastly, a darker red brick was introduced to frame main elements of the building and residential bays along Wilson, a change that created more of a warehouse feel.

Parker also notes how the design came together after a relatively minor land acquisition, by USAA, of an approximately 20,000-s.f. surface parking lot owned by property neighbor NSTA. With the extra land on the eastern edge of the property, the building design could be reconfigured from an initial "pan-handle scheme" into the "W" formation shown above, allowing for two courtyards (versus one) and an extra dozen or so apartment units.

With 191 apartment units in all, the units range from a 450-s.f. studio to 1400-plus-s.f. 3-bedroom layout. The building is 230,000 s.f. above grade, and will rise 5 stories, as is allowed in the Rosslyn-Ballston Corridor plan which affects land along Wilson and Clarendon Boulevards, although the land was zoned to allowed for 16 stories. There is ample parking on site, 256 spaces will be included below grade (18 more than is required by the County).

As for retail to enliven the Corridor, 17,500 s.f. of street-front retail will be divided into several storefront spaces: one on the corner of Wilson Boulevard and Troy Street, one on the corner of Troy and Clarendon, and three further down Clarendon Boulevard; if any retail space has been claimed, Zom wasn't ready to announce it.

With County approval, owner USAA, who bought the property/project from Zom in 2010, will also be required to create a public park worth $100,000 on a triangle swath of land nearby.

Also located nearby in the Court House district, is the future Tellus, a planned 16-story, 254-unit apartment building, expected to break ground next spring; in order to move forward, developer Erkiletian partnered with Jefferson Apartment Group.

Arlington Virginia real estate development news


Anonymous said...

what an attractive building! Compare it to the Shalom Baranes 1960's re-tread in the previous posts.

Anonymous said...

I really like the warehouse feel. It will be a great addition to the neighborhood!

Eric said...

Meh, I like the Shalom Baranes one better than this. This is pretty boring, so it should fit in well.

Anonymous said...

Great project! I'm glad to see more retail coming.

Gainesville apartment on Oct 31, 2011, 5:51:00 AM said...

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