The fast pace of residential development continues in the Dupont and Logan Circle neighborhoods. A few recently announced projects are working their way through regulatory and neighborhood approval.
Dupont Parking Lot To Become Residential Building
At the southeast corner of 17th and O Streets NW, on what is now a parking lot, the First Baptist Church is seeking approval for a 228-unit apartment building. The developer is Keener-Squire, which manages a number of properties in the Dupont Circle area. The Architect is Eric Colbert, also a well-known name in the neighborhood. The project must obtain approval from the Dupont Circle Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC) 2B and the Historic Preservation Review Board (HPRB), as well as receive a variance from the Board of Zoning Adjustment (BZA).
At the August 10 ANC meeting, a few commissioners voiced support for the design elements of the project. Several attendees, who mostly identified themselves as residents of the neighboring Richmond and Boston House condominiums, were opposed to many aspects of the project, including design, scale and amenities. The ANC’s Zoning, Preservation & Development Committee will meet September 6 to discuss the project in detail.
More Residential Developments Coming to Logan Circle
In Logan Circle, the Community Development Committee of ANC 2F heard the proposal for a 55-unit residential project at 1328 14th Street NW. This parcel is a few doors south of the 7-11 at 14th Street and Rhode Island Avenue NW. The architect for the project is Torti Gallas, who designed The Ellington in the 1300 block of U Street NW and several new residential building around the Columbia Heights metro station. According to Urban Turf, the design includes mostly studios and one bedrooms — a trend in many of the projects up and down 14th Street NW — with a mostly glass facade and ground floor retail. This project is also subject to HPRB and BZA review.
Just around the corner, Abdo Development announced plans to construct a 70-unit residential building on vacant land at 1427 Rhode Island Avenue NW. This plot is the last vacant property on the 1400 block of Rhode Island Avenue and will complete the transformation of the block that began a decade ago. Abdo had maintained an office at 1402 14th Street and rumors circulated last year that the space would become an Italian restaurant. However, Ward 2 D.C. Councilmember Jack Evans (D) recently leased the space as his campaign office in advance of the April 2012 primary and September general election.
Pigs, Pixie’s and Pedicures
Lots of activity on the commercial front as well. Eatwell DC — owners of Logan Tavern, Commissary, Grillfish and The Heights — have announced a new venture in Logan Circle at 1320 14th Street NW. The restaurant will be called The Pig, and, as the name implies, will focus on pork. According to their press release, the restaurant will have just 72 seats and a target opening in Spring 2012.
A Washington Examiner piece by neighborhood resident and journalist Harry Jaffe on how 14th Street NW is being transformed broke the news that Miss Pixie’s would be moving in March 2012. Miss Pixie’s is the landmark antique furniture store with the pink awning that has operated at 1626 14th Street NW since 2008. Borderstan editors contacted Pixie Windsor to confirm the details. Windsor said she holds some small hope of remaining in her current space beyond March 2012, especially if no new tenant is found. In the meantime, she is looking for other retail space and said she would like to remain in the area if possible.
It seems like nail salons open up faster than CVS drugstores in D.C., and Logan Circle is getting their own. Construction is underway for a nail salon at 1410 P Street, a small storefront in one of the few historic buildings that remain on the commercial strip. The other tenants in the building are a barbershop and Mac Dee Cleaners, and is across the alley from Logan Hardware.
Irvine Contemporary Closes
After five years at 1412 14th Street NW, Irvine Contemporary closed over the weekend. Earlier this summer the owner cited rising rents as the reason for closing. Not a good sign, especially since the the gallery is at the heart of the recently branded DC Arts District. The gallery is next door to the space that previously held the Mar de Plata restaurant, which has remained vacant since the restaurant relocated in 2009.
From Laura Herman. Follow her on Twitter @lmhhabs.
Spring is in the air. Whether you’re caught up in the Royal Wedding craze, trying to stake out a prime outdoor drinking location, or staying inside until the pollen disappears, get excited because the weekennnnnd is almost here. And per usual, no need to even leave the neighborhood! Here are my picks to keep you nice and busy this weekend in and around Borderstan.
Well, wake up early to watch the Royal Wedding, if you’re into that. (Can you tell I couldn’t care less?) Then spend the morning at work checking out some excellent Wedding-related interwebs items.
DANCE at Miss Pixie’s! Fast forward to the evening…by now you’ve realized that I have a little thing for dance parties, so why not extend that to a dance performance? Go check out “DANCE, DANCE, DANCE” this Friday at Miss Pixie’s from 6:30 to 8 pm.
Local artists have planned a unique performance piece, set inside Miss Pixies, looping around the furniture and window display. The event is free, though the dancers request a door donation of $5 to $10. Something a little different? Totally. Check out Uprooted Dance and pro ekoh dance for more information.
Tom Goss is a gay singer-songwriter who lives in D.C. If you were at the 17th Street Festival last September, you might have caught his performance. A native of Wisconsin, he moved to the area in 2004 to enter Catholic seminary. He later abandoned his quest to become a priest and began performing in local coffee houses in 2006.
Goss is also still program manager at Charlie’s Place, an organization that works with the homeless; it is based at St. Margaret’s Episcopal Church at 1830 Connecticut Avenue NW.
Today, he is a successful musician with two full-length CDs, two LPs, a live DVD and four music videos. Next month his latest CD, “Turn It Around,” releases, which will be followed by a 10-week, 50-city tour. For more information about Tom and his music, visit his website.
Borderstan: How would you describe your music to someone who has never heard it before?
Goss: I describe my music as Acoustic pop. Lots of folks call it singer-songwriter but I try to really focus on writing pop songs more in the vain of The Beatles rather than folk songs. People often compare me to Jason Mraz, Jack Johnson, David Gray or Dave Matthews.
Luis took this shot of Miss Pixie with her pink Christmas Tree when we passed by the store earlier this week around closing time. She told us that the tree is not for sale although she gets offers.
I remember shopping at Miss Pixie’s store when it was on Adams Mill Road in Adams Morgan. One spring Saturday afternoon I went into the store with a friend. Somehow she ended up purchasing a wrought iron bird bath–for me. Cocktails may have been involved. The bird bath now lives a few houses away with a neighbor.
Here are my picks for things to do during the weekend in Borderstan, really close by or in the city… restaurants, galleries and theater.
La Carbonara at 1926 9th Street NW is in Shaw’s Little Ethiopia. This recently opened Italian restaurant has received mix reviews, from excellent to bland, perhaps depending on the day of the week. If you are feeling adventuresome, give it a try and let us know.
Local 16, at 1602 U Street NW is a nice place to go during the week. The weekend is totally different and it can get crowded and uncomfortable. The menu is American food with an Italian influence. Local 16 has a beautiful roof top deck.
“Ink Storm” at Transformer Gallery, 1404 P Street NW: “This exhibition highlights how artists CHEN Shaoxiong, DAI Guangyu, and Paula TSAI, three emerging Beijing based artists who re-interpret and re-invent traditional Chinese uses of ink through video, drawing, and mixed-media installation, incorporate ink into their work, ink, and how each individual exploration offers compelling contributions to contemporary art discourse.”
“Mirage Series” by Steve Alderton at Touchstone Gallery, 406 7th Street NW: “The series includes portraits, cityscapes, still-lifes, and landscapes. One landscape includes what appears to be two farm structures viewed from across a field; the hot, shimmering light of a summer’s day has had its effects. Another painting shows a cityscape, with a mass of loosely rendered buildings. In both works, the atmosphere has seemingly blurred many of the specifics–but there is enough information in the watery images to transfix and invite one in. The artist’s technique successfully conveys the essence of his message, but also effectively leaves room for personal interpretation. The result is strong and engaging.” (more…)
The week-long, third annual GLBT Ganymede Arts Festival continues this week, running through Sunday–right in the heart of Borderstan. All festival performances are at Miss Pixies Backroom Palace (in the rear of the retail store) at 1626 14th Street NW (west side of 14th between Corcoran and R Streets NW). Ticket information is at the Ganymede website.
The mission of the Ganymede Festival is to “provide high-quality, professional theatre and art that fosters social and cultural awareness of and for the glbt [gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender] community.”
- Wednesday at 7 p.m. – “GLBT Stand Up Comedy Night” (Pay what you can donation)
- Thursday at 7 p.m. – “American Premeier Reading” by Australian GLBT playwright. (Pay what you can donation)
- Friday at 7 p.m. – “Rockin’ Women’s Night” with Hope Leigh Rollins and and Esmirelda. (Pay what you can donation)
- Saturday and Sunday – Featured theatrical event, “After the Garden – Edie Beale LIVE at Reno Sweeney.” Saturday show at 8 p.m.; Sunday shows at 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. Tickets are $25.
- There is also a post-festival event on Saturday, October 10, at Miss Pixies: “Catie Curtis Lives with Tom Goss.” Tickets are $25.
Oops, we missed this one. But Prince of Petworth has it: “Mid City Caffe To Open June 14th (Above Miss Pixie’s on 14th Street).” From PoP:
So it was a little later than April… From a press release:”On Sunday, June 14th, owners Fernando Acha and designer Mick Mier will unveil Mid City Caffé, a new coffee shop in Washington, DC. Located at 1626 14th Street, Mid City Caffé will offer the neighborhood and greater D.C. community a traditional coffee and pastry destination…”
Read full posting. Thanks, Prince.
Before starting, I figured that since we are such a small mini-hood, an autonomous region of the Dupont Circle and Logan Circle neighborhoods, that I would have to include neighboring and nearby winners. After all, our commercial strips are the north side of the 1400-block of P Street NW and the west side of 14th Street NW from P to S Streets.
I was wrong. Businesses in our little enclave between 14th and 16th and P and S Streets NW did incredibly well in the City Paper competition: 10 businesses, one community-based organization, one locale and one individual (a bartender) made the list of favorites from the Readers’ Poll and City Paper Staff Picks. Several businesses were winners in more than one category.