by January 20, 2012 at 8:00 am 1,711 1 Comment

Dupont Circle, Logan Circle, U Street NW, Borderstan

News from Dupont-Logan-U Street.

From Michelle Lancaster. Follow her and tell her your news on Twitter @MichLancaster or email her at [email protected].

Progression Place Up for Sale

The new mixed-use development still under construction in Shaw is up for sale, as the developers would like to free up some capital for other developments. UrbanTurf reports the construction could be complete by October of this year. The starting price tag to become a real estate mogul and own the complex is estimated to be $130 million.

Strip Malls Transforming to Urban

That may be a stretch, but this piece by Greater Greater Washington indicates that big box retailers are eyeing urban areas as their next playground. With their big, enclosed mall models struggling in the wake of economic change and the desire for ‘town centers’ that are more walkable, urban areas near Metro stations are being touted as the future of retail. Tyson’s isn’t going anywhere any time soon, but the Silver Spring model — retail, dining, bars and entertainment near a Metro stop — has taken off in Clarendon, Bethesda and the further out ‘burbs of Virginia, where people still love their cars.

Are we the beneficiaries of this evolution, or will the influx of Target, Wal-Mart and their ilk make vibrant city areas into beige spaces prone to playing Michael Bolton’s greatest hits on a tinny PA system? (Note: before you get all up in arms and protest me, I am aware and also agree this is a serious issue affecting our local small business owners and neighborhoods. But it’s Friday, and when else do I get to make jokes about otherwise depressing crap?)

Hunger Strikes for DC Voting Rights

Have you heard about the Occupy DC’ers that decided to fast in the name of DC self-government? Probably. If you assumed they finally ate, you’d be correct. But not after going a lot farther than anyone had planned, reports the Washington City Paper. It’s worth a read, even if you hate the Occupiers. Expect to feel sort of sorry for them — I can’t help it — for the bungling of the timing… seems striking until there is Congressional action is a poor idea when Congress is in recess.

I admire their moxie (this word should be used more often), as well as the commitment to an issue most people talk about and do jack about in reality.  I really do, but as the City Paper wondered politely, “it still wasn’t clear how much D.C. would benefit from having as its champion an emaciated artist best known for having once publicly circumcised himself as part of a performance.” What they said.

by November 1, 2011 at 10:25 am 3,951 1 Comment

"Borderstan""N Street NW""The Norwood", housing cooperatives

The Norwood at 1417 N Street NW is now an affordable housing cooperative. The Dupont-Logan area is home to a number of housing co-ops, including market-rate co-op buildings. (Luis Gomez Photos)

From Matty Rhoades and Mike Kohn

Victory, at last. That’s what the folks at Norwood Cooperative are saying. After years of organizing and millions in loans from the government, the Norwood tenants have finally purchased their building at 1417 N Street NW and have turned it into an affordable housing cooperative. The October 22 celebration, Huffington Post reported, included Mayan and Guatemalan fun throughout the day.

During a decade when housing for the non-upper middle class has become increasingly scarce in the neighborhood, the Norwood was an exception. The Capital Manor Cooperative on the 1400 block of W Street NW is another example of tenants being able to buy their building and turn it into an affordable housing co-op.

When one thinks of co-op buildings, it’s usually New York City that comes to mind. But there are more than 15,000 co-op housing units in the DC area, most in the city, according to the DC Cooperative Housing Coalition.

It is important to note that their are two types of housing co-ops: those that are market-rate and those that come under income limitations for the purchasers. For example, the Capital Manor buildings are in the affordable housing category while The Chastleton at 16th and R NW is in the market-rate category. There are several other affordable housing co-op buildings in the Dupont-Logan area, according to the National Cooperative Business Association.

How Housing Co-ops Work

How does a housing co-op work? By their very definition, a cooperative is a business owned by its members. Here’s how the DC Cooperative Coalition defines a housing cooperative building:

A housing cooperative is a form of ownership in which a person purchases shares (or membership) in a cooperative corporation that was formed for the purpose of providing its members a place in which to live. The cooperative corporation owns the building, land, apartments and all common elements. The owners/ members, in turn, own the corporation.

You purchase an interest in the cooperative association that allows you to live in your unit just as you would have had you purchased any other type of real estate. One thing that can be trickier when buy in a co-op building is financing. Co-op buildings often work closely with a set of lenders as banks view co-ops differently than condos or houses when it comes to loans.

Market Rate Housing Co-ops in Dupont-Logan

In the Borderstan area, the Coalition lists eight buildings in the Dupont neighborhood and one in Logan Circle — three of them are right on the 17th Street corridor. All of the ones listed are in the market-rate category, which is the composition of the Coalition’s membership.

  • Avondale Cooperative, 1734 P Street NW
  • Cavanaugh Court, 1526 17th Street NW
  • The Chastleton, 1701 16th Street NW
  • Copley Plaza, 1514 17th Street NW
  • The DeSoto, 1300 Massachusetts Avenue NW
  • Phelps Place (Woodrow), 1835 Phelps Place NW
  • Rutland Court Owners, Inc., 1725 17th Street NW
  • Hawarden Cooperative, 1419 R Street NW


by August 3, 2011 at 1:02 pm 6,657 1 Comment

14th Street NW, Logan Circle, Luis Gomez  Photos, Borderstan

Click on the collage for the Flickr slide show of development projects underway in the 14th Street corridor. (Luis Gomez Photos)

From Luis Gomez and Matty Rhoades

View the slide show of photos of development projects planned or underway in the 14th Street corridor. Each photo has a caption explaining the development project; click on Show Info to see the captions.

Washington’s 14th Street NW corridor was a big redevelopment project waiting to happen. As inner city and downtown living became popular again in the 1990s it now seems impossible that valuable chunks of land in the heart of D.C. would remain unused or underutilized.

The 1.5-mile strip of 14th Street from Thomas Circle to Columbia Heights had a relatively large number of empty or underutilized lots that were ideal for residential and commercial projects. Even now there are still empty lots or properties with small one-story structures that are suitable for new buildings.


by April 28, 2011 at 9:51 am 2,146 0

Borderstan, View 14, 14th Street NW

View 14 at 14th Street and Florida Avenue NW. (Photo courtesy of Level 2 Development)

From Tom Hay. Questions for Tom? send him an email. You can follow him on Twitter @TomOnSwann.

After a three-year lull, condo and apartment development along 14th Street — from Logan Circle to the blocks north of U Street — has blossomed at a frantic pace. (See list of related stories at bottom.)

Work is well underway at several sites and many and others are slated for groundbreaking soon. Most properties will be considered mixed-use, usually in the form of ground floor retail and residential units above.

Proof of the return of the market on 14th Street is a mixed-use project by Level 2 Development, a local real estate developer specializing in high-end residential and retail projects. It has announced two tenants for the retail spaces at the View 14 complex at 2303 14th Street NW. The building is on the northeast corner of 14th and Florida Avenue.

YWCA National Capital Area (Young Women’s Christian Association) and Beta Academy will occupy the spaces after build-out is complete. YWCA agreed to a 15-year lease and hopes to open in January 2012. Beta Academy will have a 10-year lease and has a target opening of third quarter 2011.


by April 6, 2011 at 3:01 pm 3,423 1 Comment

Borderstan, Luis Gomez Photos 14th & R Streets NW, Verizon building, Logan Circle

14th & R NW Verizon building sold to developer PN Hoffman with mixed-use development planned. (Luis Gomez Photos)

From Tom Hay

The fortress-like Verizon building at 1700 14th Street NW, the northwest corner of 14th and R Streets, has been sold to local developer PN Hoffman. The property will be redeveloped as mixed-use with residential condominiums and retail.PN Hoffman is known for their upscale properties in urban neighborhoods, locally they were behind the Flats and Warehouses at Union Row at 14th and V,  Alta on 14th near Thomas Circle, Gatsby at 15th and O, Hudson in the 1400 block of P Street and Saxon Court and  Metro Lofts on the 1400 block of Church Street.

Last week we reported on the project on the southwest corner of 14th and R Street NW  that is getting underway in May. That project is slated to have 31 units.

14th & You has a status roundup on a number of projects on the 14th Street corridor.


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