Friday, November 02, 2012

Development of Rare Vacant Lot in Dupont to Start Next Month

A nine-story apartment building planned in Dupont Circle at the corner of 17th and O Streets, NW will break ground this year, replacing a parking lot on one of the last undeveloped lots in the neighborhood.  The First Baptist Church of Washington owns the lot, but developer Keener Squire will build the 218-unit building under a 99-year ground lease with the churchEric Colbert and Associates is the architectural firm on the project.

Rendering: Eric Colbert & Associates
DCMud reported in April that the developer intended to break ground this year, but unlike project start dates that regularly slip indefinitely, executives at Keener Squire assure DCMud that the initial estimates are still valid.  Developers expect the total construction time to be about 18 months.

The project has obtained necessary approvals from the Historic Preservation Review Board (HPRB) (the site sits in the Dupont Circle Historic District), and the DC Board of Zoning adjustment, and has the support of Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC) 2B and the Dupont Circle Conservancy.  The building's 118 units will be mostly junior one-bedrooms and some two-bedrooms, which were added to plans in response to requests from neighbors.

The building's design fits in with neighboring 1930's-era buildings, an architect on the project said.   "The design draws from the art moderne apartment buildings in the area, but at the same time is an updated 21st century building," Steve Dickens, architect with Eric Colbert and Associates told DCMud.  He cited Bay State Apartments and Boston House Condominiums, both just across the street from the site, as examples of neighboring art moderne-style structures.

Art moderne buildings in the neighborhood, Dickens said, were built after just after the historic district's so-called "period of significance" - a period historic districts look to in consideration of design appropriateness - which goes up until the 1930's.  Still, the HPRB backed the design.  "Given that this neighborhood has almost no buildings that date to the period of significance, the HPRB felt that the buildings that were around us were the significant buildings to look at."

Dickens emphasized that the design process has been collaborative, with the church as a major partner, "they want to make sure that whatever goes there is something that the most immediate neighbors are happy with."

Washington D.C. real estate development news


Anonymous said...

"...the building's 218 units...the 118-unit building..." which is it?

Anonymous said...

Looks like a great infill project. I'm sure it will fill up quickly. Glad to see the NIMBYs lost this one.

Anonymous said...

I am so glad to see that ugly parking lot go! It will be nice to have a building there!

Anonymous said...

Ugly parking lot....ugly building...not sure what's worse.

Anonymous said...

It looks like a public parking structure.

Anonymous said...

I think there is a very similar building by Colbert, on 13th street. The brick is darker. Safe and boring "architecture". Sort of like middle-age sex. Something to look forward to.

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