Thursday, May 03, 2012

NoMa's Capitol Square Hotel to Break Ground This Summer

 Phase One of JBG's long-delayed Capitol Square mixed-use megadevelopment is finally set to break ground, with future phases scheduled for completion over approximately the next five years.

"The first phase of our Capitol Square project, a 200-room Hyatt Place hotel, is scheduled to start construction this summer and be complete by the end of 2013," said a source at JBG.  "The office, residential, and retail will follow in future phases."

Capitol Square will go up on the triangular wedge of land bounded by New York Avenue, First Street, and North Capitol Street, currently the site of the defunct New York Avenue Car Wash, nightclub Mirrors, a Covenant House youth shelter, and an older office building, also named Capitol Square (a name so catchy they had to use it twice).  Phase one, represented by the aforementioned hotel, will be located on the west end of the site, adjacent to where Covenant House is currently located.  The massive new office-residential-hotel-retail project will eventually bring over 2 million square feet of leasable space to NoMa, including 85,000 square feet of ground floor retail space.  Capitol Square is one of four properties in the District being developed under the umbrella of JBG Urban, a multibillion-dollar joint venture between JBG and real estate investment management firm MacFarlane Partners.

The project represents a major step in the continuing revitalization of NoMa which, despite all the hype, is still very much a work in progress.  While various real estate brochures and promotional literature like to cite the area's sizeable daytime population (NoMa BID estimates 40,000), this number glosses over the fact that after the proverbial closing time whistle, NoMa still becomes eerily quiet, though this and many other projects in the works will do much to amend that reality.

The area's bottleneck entrance from the north will presumably be alleviated by street improvements that are part of the Capitol Square project, as well as MRP's upcoming Washington Gateway project at nearby New York and Florida Avenues, which promises a "European plaza experience," featuring widened sidewalks, promenades, and sidewalk cafes.  NoMa has come a long way from when the term "neighborhood" could barely be applied to the area, but for now it remains a work in progress.

Washington, D.C. real estate development news


Anonymous said...

What's happening to the McDonald's @ 1st and NY Ave?

JA on May 3, 2012, 4:55:00 PM said...

The rendering - is that at North Capitol Street or 1st and New York Ave NE?

Anonymous said...

This will be a huge step in improving the image of DC for the tens of thousands who arrive via New York Avenue. Currently, with the exception of the lovely residual rowhouse block (north side of unit block NW, i.e. kitty-corner to Capitol Square's site), you gotta get to the Yale condominium before there's much sense of urbanity.

It's interesting to see how Sorsum Corda--immediately across N Capitol Street from this site!--is becoming an island of low-income housing amid market-rate developments. Kind of amazing, actually, that Hyatt would go for the west end of the site

DC on May 4, 2012, 7:17:00 AM said...

yes taht is really interesting that the hotel would go in that side of the project.
they better bring a lot more cops or hire security
i go rob @c gun point last summer one block up the road in NY ave nw.
the SORSUM CORDA needs to go its really ugly n brings a lot of crime to the area.
it going to be interesting to see how they handle the crime situation

Anonymous said...

Can someone please answer the first post?

75 New York Avenue NE (the SW corner of 1st and NY Ave) is owned by McDonald's. Yet the aerial site plan shown on the post does not show this site segregated from the overall plan.

Has JBG agreed to buy out McDonald's (which would be amazing since they typically hold onto prime sites...ala their location downtown at 14th and NY)? Will it be incorporated into the ground floor of one of the future Capitol Square buildings (which I also doubt considering they'd probably lose their drive-thru)?

Just wondering because that's probably the busiest/most visible corner of that entire project (bounded by 1st, N, NY and North Capitol). For them not to have it may alter (however slightly) the overall 'impression' the project has on re-imaging that area of NoMa.

Anonymous said...


Yes, JBG has an option to purchase the McDonald's site. They will turn it into an office building with ground floor retail.

tom veil said...

To confirm & add to what 12:14 said:
The west (left) side of that triangle is "Phase I" of the project. The east side with the McDonalds is, according to the NOMA website "Phase II-IV."

Isayaah Parker on May 10, 2012, 4:58:00 PM said...

That McDonalds is ugly. 2 stories of obsesity. Tear it down JGB! People will survive without it. Theres Burger King, Five Guys and Wendys right there! I hate how McDonalds has to hold on to every property, like the 14th and U location that sucks the life out of that intersection. KFC left but McDonalds just HAD to remain.

Unknown on Sep 16, 2012, 5:01:00 PM said...

God forbid that Washington D.C. stops tearing everything down right and left! It's true that not all old buildings are beautiful, but they all have their own charm in one way or another. Sometimes I'd rather see an old McDonalds building, an old Greyhound Station, a boarded up building, an old Safeway, or a group of old row-houses (etc.) rather than seeing a bunch of over-priced condos or glass office buildings with absolutely no character whatsoever. Washington D.C. used to be a real city with a lot of character until the city (or the developers, or whoever) decided to go overboard and tear so many things down. Why can't Washington D.C. just slow down on all the demolition projects and just let some of the old buildings co-exist in peace with all of the new buildings that have already gone up? Why not just leave the Greyhound Bus Station alone (or at least find a way to incorporate the current structure into the new project, just so it's not completely lost), why not leave the Wisconsin Avenue Giant alone (or at least expand on it), and why not leave the RFK Stadium alone (etc.)?? First of all, all of the buildings I mentioned are just fine. They may not be perfect, but they don't need to be demolished, either. Second of all, the Greyhound Station is convenient just the way it is right now. I don't know if they plan to tear the current structure down, but I know that the bus services are moving to Union Station. And third, once an old building is gone, it's gone!

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