Category: Press

The Washington Post Features Agudo in Union Market

Only one of four units is still for sale. It has three bedrooms and is listed at $924,900.

The four high-end condos at 513 M St. NE are two-story residences in a one-of-a-kind building in the Union Market neighborhood. Only one unit remains for sale.

The currently available Unit C, on the lower and ground-floor levels, measures 1,870 square feet and has three bedrooms, two full bathrooms and a powder room (half-bath). It’s listed at $924,900. The condo fee is $196 a month. Move-ins for the other units are expected to start in the next few weeks.

Each of the two upper units has a rooftop deck. Each of the lower units, including Unit C, has a below-ground patio at the back of the building. There are parking spaces, but they have all been sold. The building was once a church — the development team helped relocate the congregation — and D.C.-based Kube Architecture did the design work for its conversion into condominium units. Warmington Oppenheim Development is the developer.

Angled bay windows facing the street are among the building’s most distinctive features.

“One of the biggest challenges in designing condos is bringing natural light and fresh air into the middle of the units,” said Janet Bloomberg, a partner in Kube. “Often, we’re working in rowhouses or attached units that have party walls on one or both sides, so this is difficult. We develop creative plan layouts to allow for operable windows in the middle of the units, making them feel more open and breathable.”

The building is a short walk from Union Market, which has a long, rich connection to the wholesale and retail food businesses. The city has been encouraging investment in and development of 45 acres sandwiched between Florida and New York avenues NE.

The effort has paid off, according to Kate Hanley of McWilliams Ballard, who is in charge of sales and marketing at 513 M Street NE.

“There is very little [residential] inventory in the Union Market area, and what is there is not of the same quality as this project,” Hanley said. “The combination of high quality and high design, in a neighborhood that is booming, made this project a success.”

The neighborhood continues to move upscale with the addition of the quick-selling condominium project at 513 M Street NE. Matthew Oppenheim, a principal in Warmington Oppenheim, said going with an edgy design was a good gamble.

“Our M Street project is flanked by two projects that are generic and don’t contribute any character to the neighborhood,” Oppenheim said. “There is a price premium attached to our units. The unit contract prices have set a record in the Union Market neighborhood.”

Warmington Oppenheim advocates preservation rules that make it possible to put well-designed, well-made modern buildings in traditional neighborhoods.

“We love diversity in design and think it adds a lot of character to the city to see rowhouses next to well-executed contemporary projects,” said Brett Warmington, also a Warmington Oppenheim principal. “Preservation is important but can also hold some neighborhoods back. Design guidelines that mandate quality of materials and execution are equally as important as any preservation guidelines.”

Bloomberg, the architect, said buyers are attracted to interesting design. “I definitely believe that condos designed in a creative or unexpected way sell faster,” Bloomberg said. “People are looking for a home that stands out as high design. They don’t want their home to look like all the others.”

Schools: J.O. Wilson Elementary, Stuart-Hobson Middle, Eastern High School

Transit: The NoMa-Gallaudet U Metro station (Red Line) is less than a half-mile to the west. The 90 and 92 bus routes run on Florida Avenue NE and Eighth Street NE.

Nearby: Union Market, Gallaudet University, Union Station, Alethia Tanner Park.

513 M Street NE

Four condominiums were built, and one unit remains for sale. It’s listed at $924,900.

Builder: Warmington Oppenheim Development

Features: The chef’s kitchen has an island, walk-in pantry, Bosch appliances (including six-burner range) and custom maple kitchen cabinetry. The unit also has white oak floors, Nest smart doorbell and Nest smart thermostat.

Bedrooms/bathrooms: 3/2.5

Square footage: 1,870

Condominium fee: $196 a month

View model: By appointment

Sales: Kate Hanley of McWilliams Ballard at 202-568-3045 or khanley@mcwb.com

81 Stylish Condominiums Are Coming Soon to an Ideal Old Town Location

Undeniable style, a centralized location, elevated design, and cosmopolitan lifestyles — these are the hallmarks of urban living and what you can expect when Towngate North comes to Old Town North Alexandria.

Anchored at the intersection of Slaters Lane and the George Washington Memorial Parkway, Towngate North offers 81 stylish condominium residences with exceptional access to the quaint charm of Old Town and the hustle and bustle of DC.

“We know our owners want and expect to have it all when choosing urban DC living and I can say Towngate more than delivers,” said Gregg Hughes, Senior Vice President at Brookfield Residential. “Whether it was selecting the condominium’s location, amenities or floorplan options, every time we thought what we had couldn’t get any better, we pushed ourselves a little further to offer an unrivaled living experience.”

Towngate North is scheduled to open for pre-sales in early 2022, with residences in the first building ready for move-in by fall 2022. The second building will be ready to welcome new owners in early 2023.

This new condominium community by Brookfield Residential features two thoughtfully detailed buildings with 1-, 2- and 3-bedroom residences. Each floorplan is defined by flowing open spaces and abundant natural light. Prices range from the $400’s to $1.6M. Residences at Towngate North will feature a refreshing blend of timeless designs with polished finishes, offering owners a rare combination of modern style and comforting warmth in their home. Amenities at Towngate North include a building concierge, clubroom for gatherings and conference space.There is also a fitness room for energizing workouts, a dog spa to pamper the pups and a rooftop terrace to unwind with gorgeous Old Town views.

Homeowners will be just moments from George Washington Memorial Park and the Mount Vernon Trail, where they can cruise into the heart of Old Town for dinner, shopping or a show. Or they can hop in the car and take the George Washington Memorial Parkway into downtown DC.

Discerning home buyers will easily recognize that Towngate North offers an ideal combination of style, sophistication and location, and the property is expected to sell quickly.

To learn more about Towngate North and register for VIP updates, visit TowngateNorth.com.

At City Homes in DC, condo-living is a multilevel thing

By Connie Dufner, Washington Post | October 19, 2021

Jordan Mixter said she knew one thing for sure when she and her partner were searching for a new home: The dining room table as office was done, and so was pandemic-style work-life imbalance.
So, when they started contemplating a move from their apartment in D.C.’s NoMa neighborhood, space and lifestyle were priorities. They looked at a mix of options, including existing rowhouses, a Brookland bungalow and new homes of various types.
“My partner is much more into new things than I am,” said Mixter, director of operations and strategy for a think tank. “I loved the charm of a bungalow, but I kept thinking about the upkeep and the repairs. It was more than I wanted to bite off.” At City Homes Eckington, in Northeast Washington’s Eckington neighborhood, the couple found a pleasing blend of new construction, urban neighborhood romance and, most importantly, a feeling of spaciousness, both mental and physical.
“I wasn’t against buying a condo,” Mixter said. “I just wanted it to feel like we were buying a home.” They chose a two-story residence in the City Homes community of 45 townhouse-style condos, which opened for sales in September. About 30 percent of the units have been sold, and owners are expected to begin moving in over the next few weeks.
City Homes is one of three residential communities in the Quincy Lane mixed-use development, along with the condos at 1625 Eckington and the Judd & Weiler rental apartments.
When complete, Quincy Lane will have a variety of shops and restaurants connected by a pedestrian-friendly cobblestone street. Businesses open there now are Union Kitchen, a commercial kitchen, and Brooklyn Boulders, an indoor rock-climbing gym.
City Homes units have mostly two- and three-bedroom configurations in three floor plans. (One of the units is a one-bedroom.) Most units have two floors; the penthouses have three. Each unit has at least one private outdoor space.
Interiors were designed by the firm Cecconi Simone, and the building’s corridors feature three seven-piece collections — by painter Steven Cushner and multimedia artists Teal Price and Julie Wolfe.
Grosvenor Group is the City Homes developer. KTGY did the architecture, and McWilliams Ballard is doing sales and marketing.
Mixter’s unit, which she hopes to move into this fall, has a walkout patio and plenty of storage space. “We love that it’s two-story and lives like a home,” Mixter said. “The appliances are beautiful. I love gas cooking, so the gas range was a big plus.”Mixter added: “We have been stuck in an apartment without even a small balcony, so we appreciate the designated outdoor space. There’s plenty of interaction with the urban environment around you.”Another homeowner, Michael Moore, a real estate broker with Compass, said he learned about City Homes from a sales presentation on Zoom. “I went to look at the model on a Saturday, and through the weekend, I kept thinking, ‘I really like them,’” he said.
He liked the two walk-in closets in the primary bedroom and the one in the guest bedroom. The construction was solid, Moore said, and the outdoor space inviting. “It checked all the boxes for me,” he said. “As a real estate agent, I’ve seen a lot. I asked to come back a second time, with a different set of eyes, looking at it for my personal use. I’m very picky about quality, and I found it excellent in 95 percent of the categories.”

Moore selected the community’s model unit, which will become available after the project is built out.Quincy Lane is “very forward thinking, like CityCenter, with a large pedestrian walkway and lights across the alley. I can walk up from my home and grab a coffee or groceries,” Moore said.

Nearby: City Homes is about a half-mile from Union Market, across the street from Alethia Tanner Park and a quarter-mile from the Metropolitan Branch Trail. It is less than two miles from Union Station and about 3.5 miles from Nationals Park.
Schools: Langley Elementary, McKinley Middle, Dunbar High

Transit: City Homes is about a half-mile from the NoMa-Gallaudet Metro station, on the Red Line. Many buses serve the area, including routes on North Capitol Street, R Street and Florida Avenue.

City Homes Eckington
1500 Harry Thomas Way NE, Washington
The community of 45 townhouse-style condos has a two-level, one-bedroom unit from $699,900; two-level, two- and three-bedroom units from $795,900; and three-level, three-bedroom penthouse units from $999,900.
Developer: Grosvenor Group
Features: Kitchens have Fisher & Paykel appliances, including gas cooktops, double ovens and double-drawer dishwashers; flat-panel cabinetry with soft-close hardware; built-in trash and recycling drawers; soapstone quartz countertops; and Perla white quartz backsplashes. Each residence has one or more private outdoor spaces in the form of a patio, terrace or balcony. Penthouse units include private roof terraces. Primary bathrooms have matte-black plumbing hardware by Pfister, Kohler fixtures, a frameless shower door and a deep soaking tub by Kohler. A parking garage is under the building, and 43 spaces are available for purchase.
Bedrooms/bathrooms: 1 to 3 / 2 to 4
Square-footage: 950 to 1,470
Homeowners’ fees: $310 to $489 a month, depending on unit size
Contact: David Klimas with McWilliams Ballard, 202-431-1272 or dklimas@mcwb.com

Towngate North, Office buildings in Old Town Alexandria to be converted to new condos

By Michele Lerner, Washington Post | October 6, 2021

The office-to-housing conversion continues, this time in Old Town Alexandria, Va. Brookfield Residential recently announced plans to transition offices into two condominium buildings called Towngate North in an Old Town North neighborhood at 625 and 635 Slaters Lane.

“Towngate North is comprised of two former corporate buildings which we’ll be extensively renovating to transform into upscale condominiums,” wrote Gregg Hughes, senior vice president at Brookfield Residential, in an email. “We’re excited to use our expertise in innovative homebuilding to revitalize these existing buildings into a new opportunity for people to join the vibrant Old Town North community.”

The 81 one-, two- and three-bedroom condos are anticipated to be priced from the mid $400,000s to $1.6 million. Presales are expected to begin in early 2022, with the first building ready for occupants in October 2022 and the second building ready in early 2023. Planned amenities at Towngate North include a clubroom, conference room, fitness center with yoga room, dog spa, bike storage areas and a rooftop terrace with views of Alexandria and Washington, D.C. Concierge services will also be available.

The Mount Vernon Trail, a paved trail for biking, jogging and walking which stretches 18 miles from Mount Vernon to Roosevelt Island along the Potomac River, will be easily accessible from the development. Towngate North is 1.2 miles from the Braddock Road Metro station and 1.7 miles from Potomac Yard, where a new Metro station is scheduled to open in fall 2022.

The Old Town Waterfront and the shops and restaurants on King Street are about 1.5 miles from the development. Other nearby neighborhoods include Del Ray, Shirlington, and Pentagon City. The development is just off the George Washington Memorial Parkway to drive into D.C. Reagan National Airport is two miles from Towngate North.

For more information and to be placed on a priority list, visit www.TowngateNorth.com

Urban Turf Highlights Eckington’s Quincy Lane Opening

Eckington’s Quincy Lane Opens Doors to Two Stylish Properties

September 10, 2021 by UrbanTurf 

Quincy Lane—Eckington’s energetic new pedestrian-centric meeting point—is welcoming homeowners to a mix of stylish condominiums, townhomes and apartments, all anchored by exciting new retail.

On September 25th from 4:00 to 6:00pm, the cobblestone community will come alive with local vendors, live music, food and drinks. Prospective buyers will have a chance to tour new models at both City Homes, a collection of 45 multi-level townhome-style residences; and 1625 Eckington, a contemporary 179-condominium property. To RSVP for the opening fair, visit QuincyLaneRSVP.com.

Attendees will also have the opportunity to explore the soon-to-open Brooklyn Boulders climbing gym and taste food from some of Union Kitchen’s forthcoming restaurants. Quincey Lane will also be home to Union Kitchen Commissary, a convenient neighborhood grocery store featuring prepared meals and groceries for owners.

City Homes is a timeless collection of connected townhome-style residences by internationally renowned interior design firm, Cecconi Simone. City Homes blends stylish contemporary interiors—featuring oversized windows, modern kitchens, work nooks and carefully curated living spaces—with private outdoor spaces. The homes are priced from $794,900 and move-ins for the property will begin in early fall.

The condominiums at 1625 Eckington feature a mix of one- and two-bedroom residences with spacious floor plans, nine-foot ceilings, kitchens featuring Porcelanosa cabinetry and Bosch appliances, and floor-to-ceiling windows that frame quintessential DC views. Owners at 1625 Eckington have access to a host of high-end amenities, including concierge staffed front desk, lobby-level meeting and lounge space, in addition to a rooftop fitness center, community room with built-in kitchen and expansive Nana wall that opens onto a rooftop terrace and private pool. Pricing starts from the mid $300s with homes available for immediate move-in.

Eckington is one of Washington DC’s oldest neighborhoods, full of historic Victorian homes and a wide variety of established and new commercial highlights. Local favorites include Union Market, Red Hen, Big Bear Café, Uncle Chips, Cotton and Reed and Anxo Cidery & Pintxos Bar. Quincy Lane is also steps from Alethia Tanner Park, the NOMA-Gallaudet Metro station and Metropolitan Branch Trail.

For more information about the Quincy Lane opening fair, and to RSVP, please visit QuincyLaneRSVP.com.

The Washington Post features The Archie

40-Condo D.C. Building Makes A Statement

By Connie Dunfer, Tuesday, August 17th

The Archie, a new condominium building in Northwest Washington’s Petworth neighborhood, combines modern construction, affordable pricing and access to urban amenities.

The 40 units — at 4111 Kansas Ave. NW, near Taylor Street and Georgia Avenue — are tailored for first-time home buyers, said Robbie Cook, vice president of McWilliams Ballard, the sales and marketing firm for the project. Lock7 is the developer.

“They are beautifully efficient and really reasonably priced,” he said. “You do get this wonderful balance in a building of this size, with the comfort of property management and the benefits of big condo living. But it’s not so big that you don’t know your neighbors.”

Since the project opened for hard-hat tours this summer, about 15 percent of the units have been sold, including one of three penthouse residences. Move-ins are expected to begin in the fall. “Three homes sold in the first week of sales because we believe, there’s pent-up demand” for housing in D.C. for first-time home buyers, Cook said.

To satisfy D.C.’s inclusionary zoning rules, three of the 40 units have been set aside as affordable housing, and they are available by application. The Archie has one high-speed elevator and a community roof deck, open to residents of all units, with greenery and views of Washington National Cathedral and the Petworth treetops. The penthouses also have private roof decks. There are five parking spaces. Three are available for purchase; two are for the use of residents with Zipcar memberships.

The five-story building has a mix of studio and one- and to two-bedroom units, many with outdoor terraces. Seven semi-basement units have big windows that bring in natural light. Cook noted that the building’s “ground-up construction” sets it apart from neighborhood condo projects that are conversions of existing buildings.

The exterior has corrugated metal siding and oversize black-metal-trimmed windows that “are meant to feel industrial,” Cook said. “The stark contrast between the industrial building and the lush green roof deck and streetside plantings is intentional and helps The Archie stand out on the block,” he said.

Inside, the condos have open floor plans, recessed lighting, wide-plank European flooring, polished chrome hardware and a stacked washer and dryer. “The interiors of the building are anything but cold and industrial feeling,” Cook said.

Cook is bullish on the Petworth neighborhood. “I see Petworth as an opportunity for safe investment,” he said. “It’s close in, accessible and has a lot going on. I only see it moving forward. … I like that for The Archie. You’re close to everything, but not on top of it. There’s a neighborhood feel.”

Nearby: The Archie is in a walkable urban area with many restaurants. Two supermarkets are less than a half-mile away. It is a half-mile from Upshur Park (with outdoor pool, dog park, soccer field and other facilities) and a four-minute walk from Petworth Recreation Center. The Petworth neighborhood library is across the street. Howard University is about a mile away.

Schools: Powell Elementary, MacFarland Middle, Roosevelt High

Transit: The Petworth Metro Station, on the Green and Yellow lines, is less than a half-mile from The Archie. Metrobus routes run along Georgia, Kansas and New Hampshire avenues.

The Archie

4111 Kansas Ave. NW, Washington

Market-unit prices range from $332,900 for a studio to $699,999 for a two-bedroom penthouse. The affordable units are about $210,000.

Builder: Lock7

Features: Kitchens have GE Profile stainless-steel appliances, with a French-door refrigerator in some units; a matte white finish on upper cabinets, soprano ash wood on lower cabinets; and a Kohler matte black pull-down spray faucet. Standard bathroom features include a soprano ash-finished vanity, a Delta Trinsic polished-chrome faucet, a Folsom white soaking tub with shower, white subway tile on the walls and light gray 12- by 24-inch tile on the floor.

Bedrooms/bathrooms: studio to 2 /1 or 2

Square-footage: 486 to 922

Homeowner association fees: $210 to $403 a month.

Contact: McWilliams Ballard sales team, 202-337-7222

The Ritz-Carlton Residences, Chevy Chase featured in Washington Post: Luxury Condos, Prime Suburban Md. Location

By Scott Sowers | August 3rd, 2021

Chevy Chase Lake, a multiuse development in Montgomery County, Md., is about luxury living on a large scale, with plans for 86,500 square feet of retail and 531 high-end residential units. It’s all happening just off Connecticut Avenue about two miles north of Chevy Chase Circle at the D.C. city line.
The first phase of that development includes — in addition to 280 rental apartments — 65 condominium units: the Ritz-Carlton Residences. The condos are expected to be ready for move-ins to begin in early 2022, said Robbie Cook, vice president at McWilliams Ballard, which is in charge of sales and marketing.
Prices range from $925,000 to more than $2 million, depending on options. About half the condo units have already been sold.
Chevy Chase Lake is being built around a spacious neighborhood square, and initially will have three buildings, two with apartments and one with the 65 condos. The development plan includes a Purple Line light-rail stop between two of Metro’s Red Line stations, Silver Spring on the east side and Bethesda on the west. Construction on the Purple Line has been halted by a contract dispute but is expected to resume this year. The original projected completion date was in 2023.
The Chevy Chase site is also near the other urban amenities of southwestern Montgomery County and neighboring Northwest Washington, as well as the area’s parks and other venues for outdoor recreation.“There is so much to do and see in Chevy Chase and the neighboring suburbs,” Cook said. “The location is exceptional, placing residents alongside the Capital Crescent Trail and just a bike ride away from Rock Creek Park.”
He also commented on the condo building’s on-site amenities. “This includes a piano lounge, state-of-the-art fitness facility, meditation and yoga terrace,” he said. Floor plans for the Ritz-Carlton Residences are broken into four groups: The Park, The Lake Collection, The Chase Collection, and Lion and Crown.The Park units range from 1,107 to 1,346 square feet, with one bedroom, a study and two bathrooms; The Lake Collection, 1,344 to 1,565 square feet, with two bedrooms and up to three bathrooms; The Chase Collection, 1,756 to 1,930 square feet, with two bedrooms and up to three bathrooms; Lion and Crown, 1,980 to 2,202 square feet, with three-bedrooms and up to three bathrooms.Every condominium unit has private outdoor space and at least one assigned parking space. Penthouses have two parking spaces. Condo fees range from $1,295 to $2,575 a month and are attributed to costs that include “signature services such as a building manager, doorman, valet, porter service and a dedicated residential team that caters to the needs of Owners.”
The lead architect for Chevy Chase Lake is D.C.-based David M. Schwarz. Akseizer Design Group, based in Alexandria, Va., did the interior design for the Ritz-Carlton Residences.

Some customization is available, but there is a deadline, which looms larger as the project nears completion. “For homes put under contract prior to Labor Day,” Cook said, “purchasers can select from a collection of seven different design expressions from Akseizer, or can choose their own flooring stain, cabinet hardware, countertops, decorative pendant lighting, wall paint colors and bathroom fixture style.”

Schools: Rosemary Hills Elementary, North Chevy Chase Elementary, Silver Creek Middle and Bethesda-Chevy Chase High
Transit: A Purple Line station is planned, although work on the light-rail line has been delayed. The Bethesda Metro station, on the Red Line, is about a mile and a half away. Chevy Chase Lake has easy access to Interstate 495 (the Capital Beltway). There are bus stops on Connecticut Avenue and Jones Bridge Road.
Nearby: Rock Creek Park, downtown Bethesda and the Capital Crescent Trail are close.
The Ritz-Carlton Residences
8551 Connecticut Ave., Chevy Chase, Md. Tours of the sales gallery at 8401 Connecticut Ave., Suite 111, are available by appointment only.
Sixty-five condos are under construction; half of them have been sold. Prices range from $925,000 to more than $2,000,000, depending on options.
Developer: Bozzuto
Features: All the residences have private outdoor space and at least one assigned parking space. Units on the penthouse level have two parking spaces. Units have smart-home entry systems, Nest thermostats, white oak hardwood floors, high-speed WiFi connections and tray ceilings with cove lighting in the owner’s suite and dining areas. The kitchens have solid-wood cabinetry by Stevali, LED undercounter lighting, quartz countertops and backsplashes, and appliances by Bosch and Thermador. Owner’s suite bathrooms have marble floors and Kohler Kallista faucets and fixtures.
Bedrooms / bathrooms: 1 to 3 / 2 to 3
Square footage: 1,107 to 2,202
Condominium fees: $1,295 to $2,575 a month
ContactThe Ritz-Carlton Residences, Chevy Chase Sales Team, rcresidences@chevychaselake.com 301-264-8806

City Homes & Area DC Developers Double Down on the Power of Art

By Keith Loria | July 9th, 2021

It isn’t enough for developers to just make pretty buildings anymore; to be truly engaged and seen as community builders, many developers say they find it wise to invest in public art projects that are in line with the communities that surround their projects.

That’s why many developers in the Washington region are now incorporating paintings, sculptures and other art installations in their projects.

Here is a look at some recent projects in the region utilizing art.

City Homes

Grosvenor Americas has always had a deep commitment to patronizing local artists and, over the last decade, has contributed more than $500,000 to local artists in D.C. through its development projects.

“We’re seeing a lot more interest in art right now in the multifamily space, as well as in commercial and office,” Ryan Stewart, Grosvenor Americas’ senior development manager, told Commercial Observer. “People are gravitating toward things that feel authentic, and these pieces really feel that way — they stand out and provide something pure and true that someone put their blood, sweat and tears into.”

It’s newest development, City Homes, a townhome community in D.C.’s historic Eckington neighborhood, includes a creative art walk experience within the unit corridors featuring three seven-piece original collections by local artists Caitlin Teal Price, Julie Wolfe and Steven Cushner.

“This area has a deep artistic history, and we have partnered closely with local artisans to curate art for the space,” Stewart said. “We decided to make a large investment in order to feature art in the corridors, because we really wanted to recognize the artisan members of our community and applaud their contributions to Eckington and D.C. as a whole.”

Another art piece in the region that Grosvenor Americas is proud of is Crossroads, a 30-foot-tall, stainless-steel sculpture at Central, an apartment community in Silver Spring, Md.

It’s a beautiful reminder of consequential decision-making. Importantly, this piece is a part of the public realm and is meant for all community members to enjoy,” Stewart said. “For us, our investment in public art boils down to creating a healthy environment. We know that experiencing true artwork is good for mental health — it challenges our thoughts and makes us look at things differently. It also brings us moments of joy in the day we otherwise wouldn’t have. We really see these art pieces as extensions of our goal to create strong, vibrant, lasting communities.”

Bryant Street

Byran Street is a new development in D.C.’s Edgewood neighborhood, offering apartments, retail and public spaces. Developer MRP Realty has taken specific care to understand the community it is entering and has invested more than $75,000 in local artists’ work, honoring the community’s history, both inside the building and outside in public art spaces.

“From a residential perspective, we know there is only so much we can do within the units themselves, so we are always looking for what else we can do,” Matt Bailey, development manager of MRP Realty, told CO. “In the past couple years, it seemed like we were in an amenity race to build the biggest gym, pool or lobby, but now we are seeing the prioritization of public art space as the ultimate community amenity.

“Amongst developers here, we are seeing an arts race of sorts,” he added. “Developers are pushing each other to incorporate dynamic art concepts from local and unique artists into their developments.”

The first residential building in Bryant Street, Coda, has more than 2,300 square feet of local art in five murals, and, overall, artists have created more than 5,000 square feet of art throughout Bryant Street.

“Much of the inspiration for the designs came from the existing community murals on the site. We wanted to be sure any public art was a true value-add and an authentic reflection of the community,” Bailey said. “For Bryant Street, community-curated art has been a great avenue to connect with the community. In fact, there were some existing murals commissioned years ago that we wanted to add to when we entered the space. We commissioned local artists to create complementary murals that connect the neighborhood to its history and future.”

Inside the buildings, MRP Reality has also incorporated the work of local artists that feature subjects that speak to the narrative of the neighborhood.

“We’ve found that public art generates a lot more interest in a development and helps add to the personality of those projects within their neighborhoods,” Bailey said. “It helps elevate and complement our architectural designs, both on the interiors as well as exterior, and we’ve found that residents really appreciate and value consciously created art installations in the place they call home.”

The Station at Riverdale Park

Calvin Cafritz Enterprises continues to develop The Station at Riverdale Park, a 36-acre development in Prince George’s County that, when completed, will feature 119 townhouses, 850 multifamily units, 160,000 square feet of retail and 20,000 square feet of office. The active mixed-use community also includes art from all over the world, which is featured throughout the property for the public to enjoy.

“As the DMV area continues to reopen, residents and visitors will continue to look for beautiful, relaxing spaces to spend time outdoors with friends and family, and many of those spaces will revolve around art,” Jane Cafritz told CO. “Art can be intimidating for many of us, making the artistic process feel out of reach. By putting curated works out in the open, it creates new energy, and inspires creativity and an appreciation for the arts within a community.”

The area includes a wing mural by renowned artist Kelsey Montague, known for her Taylor Swift-inspired mural in Nashville; and “The Soul of Words I and II” sculptures by Spanish sculptor and artist, Jaume Plensa.

“Art, like the pieces featured at The Station, can help add character and beauty to the spaces they inhabit,” Cafritz said. “Some, like our Riverdale Engineering Research Corporation plane from 1946, can be a beautiful nod to the neighborhood’s history. And others, like ‘Sir Rulean’ by Kim In Tae, can be a symbol for gathering at Bear Square — The Station’s central meeting point, with family and food-oriented programming, that brings the community together throughout the year.”

The Redevelopment of Downtown Columbia, including the Merriweather District Neighborhood

In 2010, The Howard County Council in Maryland adopted the Downtown Columbia Plan to guide the redevelopment of the center core of the city, calling for works of art to be incorporated into new amenity spaces and private developments, and suggesting that “the walls of buildings and parking garages could become the surfaces” for works of art.

“People today — everyone from CEOs to young adults joining the workforce and young families — are looking for an urban core within a community offering an active, outdoor lifestyle,” Greg Fitchitt, president of the Columbia region for The Howard Hughes Corporation, which is developing the area, told CO. “Public art, and the arts in general, have always been central to the vision and appeal of Downtown Columbia, notable for its natural, open setting and progressive institutions.”

Merriweather District is the first ground-up development in the Downtown Columbia Plan, and is envisioned as a regional hub for culture and commerce. Once completed, Merriweather District will include 4.9 million square feet of mixed-use development, including public spaces, residential, office, and varied street retail.

“One of our team’s early investments was “Azlon”, one of the largest kinetic sculptures in the state of Maryland, by internationally renowned artist Anthony Howe,” said Vanessa Rodriguez, vice president of marketing for The Howard Hughes Corporation. “Azlon presents a slow-motion dance of steel and light at such a large scale that it can mesmerize viewers for long, extended moments. When the wind is calm, the sculpture’s 22 finely balanced, curving wings remain perfectly still, but a breeze sets them into a majestic, spiraling vortex.”

HHC also commissioned Vicki Scuri Siteworks to create “Rainbow Sunset”, a dramatic graphic installation on the north and west sites of the parking garage for One Merriweather, the first building developed in the Meriweather District. Inspired by what Scuri has described as “the warm hues of Maryland’s sunsets”, the work interacts with sunlight, creating changing shades of color.

“As an arts activist, I have enjoyed seeing how this region continues to embrace the powerful role that the arts can play in shaping communities,” Rodriguez said. “Especially now, as we emerge from the pandemic, people are reconsidering just how important art can be in activating the public realm and ensuring the success of development by creating vibrant public experiences.”

Office-to-Residential Conversion in Old Town North to Open

May 24, 2021 | Alexandria Living Magazine Staff Writer

A new condo building at 801 N. Fairfax St. is under construction now in a formerly empty office building.   A commercial-to-residential building transformation at the corner of North Fairfax and Montgomery streets is under construction. The project, at 801 N. Fairfax St., will feature 54 condos.

One-bedroom condos will start in the upper $500,000’s. Two-bedroom condos will start in the mid-$600,000’s and two-bedroom-plus-den condos will be priced in the low $900,000’s. All will have open floor plans 10-foot ceilings, gourmet kitchens and plenty of natural light. The building was an empty office building and is being renovated by Abramson Properties and McWilliams|Ballard.

The condo building’s website, at live801north.com, is inviting would-be residents to sign up for more information about the property.  The building is located near the hotel-to-residential conversion project at the Crowne Plaza in the Old Town North neighborhood.

1625 Eckington – DC Condo Building Is In the Thick Of Mixed-Use Development

Jan. 19, 2021 at 8:00 a.m. EST

The streetscape is changing rapidly in part of Northeast Washington’s NoMa neighborhood as redevelopment transforms more than three acres into a mixed-use residential and retail destination. Eckington Yards will have a 12-story, 179-unit condominium building — 1625 Eckington at Quincy Lane — two rental apartment buildings and a structure containing ­townhouse-style condos.
The 179-unit condo building is at ­Eckington Place and Quincy Lane NE, a new street that is an extension of Quincy Place. The lane runs east of Eckington Place between the four new buildings to create a retail corridor open to pedestrians and slow-moving vehicular traffic.
“This is a ‘woonerf-style street,’ ” said Chris Masters, executive vice president of McWilliams Ballard, which is handling sales. “It’s common in Europe and is called a ‘living street.’ ”The first two floors of 1625 Eckington will be occupied by shops and restaurants. The building’s residential units will occupy the third to 12th floors. Base prices for the condos range from $359,900 to $1,299,900. About 20 percent have been sold. A furnished model unit is on view at 1625 Eckington. And the McWilliams Ballard sales gallery, at 1485 Ninth St. NW, has a scale model of the entire development and a mock-up of a kitchen and another of a bathroom.
Boxes checked: Rachel Sinderbrand and Wesley Williamson have lived in NoMa for a few years. “When we started looking to buy, we knew we wanted to stay in walking distance of where we are now,” Williamson said. But they had a growing list of prospects before they saw an ad for 1625 Eckington.
They went to the sales gallery and chose a seventh-floor unit after studying floor plans and researching the developer. “It was very much a trusting situation for us,” Williamson said.
On a hard-hat tour of the unfinished unit, they “got a sense of the space and view,” Sinderbrand said. “We liked the light, especially compared to our home now, which has just one smallish window. And there’s a terrace. It was important to have some outdoor space.”
She added: “It checked all the boxes. Hopefully, we can move in the spring.” Masters confirmed that the unit should be ready to occupy in the spring.
Eckington Yards is in a vibrant, up-and-coming section of D.C. The building at 1625 Eckington has a “warm, residential aesthetic [that] blends mid-century, classic modernist design with industrial touches, evoking the heyday of Eckington’s industrial past,” said Rhea Vaflor, associate principal and lifestyle director at Hickok Cole, the interior designer.

“When residents want to get away without going too far from home, the rooftop [clubroom] features a see-through fireplace with a picture-perfect view of the Capitol, downtown D.C., the Washington Monument and National Cathedral,” she added.The building’s amenities include a rooftop pool, a fitness center, a cafe with a hosting kitchen for entertaining, a green roof and rooftop grilling station. The building lobby will have a full-time concierge.

Eric Colbert & Associates is the architecture firm.

Nearby: Alethia Tanner Park, 2½ acres and open since June, is a neighborhood highlight, with gardens, grass, a playground, a dog park and a connection to the Metropolitan Branch Trail. The park is named for Maryland native Alethia Tanner, who was born enslaved and bought her freedom and the freedom of some relatives in 1810. She promoted education for D.C.’s Black children.

Gallaudet University’s grounds are an inviting place to walk. Union Market weathers the pandemic as a venue for takeout food, with tables outside. The market also has shops such as District Cutlery, Harvey’s Market and Red Apron Butchery. There is a Whole Foods Market on H Street and a Trader Joe’s on Florida Avenue.
Schools: Langley Elementary, McKinley Middle, Dunbar High.
Transit: The closest Metro station, NoMa-Gallaudet U on the Red Line, is within easy walking distance and is one stop from Union Station. It has 10 bike racks. Eckington Yards is near New York and Florida avenues and North Capitol Street. It is steps away from a streetcar line that traverses H Street. Resident-only street parking is prevalent.
1625 Eckington at Quincy Lane
1625 Eckington Pl. NE, Washington

There will be 179 condos in the 12-story building. Base prices range from $359,900 to $1,299,900. About 20 percent are sold.

Developer: JBG Smith
Features: Ceilings are nine feet high. Hardwood floors run throughout the units. Floor-to-ceiling windows let in natural light. The color scheme is neutral white with black matte fixtures. Bosch appliances, Porcelanosa cabinetry and quartz counters are standard. A below-ground parking garage has about 100 spots available for purchase for $45,000 each. There’s also bike storage.
Bedrooms/bathrooms: 1 to 2 plus den/ 1 or 2
Square-footage: 510 to 1,380
Condominium association fees: $325 to $810 a month
See model: By appointment.
Contacts: Kate Hanley at 202-568-3045 or Timur Loynab at 571-215-6554 and 1625eckington.com
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