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1,800 Residences & More: Gallaudet, JBG File Plans For Massive Redevelopment

by UrbanTurf Staff

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Layout of proposed buildings. Click to enlarge.

One year ago, Gallaudet University entered into an agreement with The JBG Companies to redevelop four university parcels along 6th Street NE. Recently-filed plans now reveal the massive scope of this planned redevelopment.

The first stage planned unit development application filed with the Zoning Commission outlines plans for 1,800 residential units, approximately 135,000 square feet of retail and 63,000 square feet of office space, built in four phases. There will be a significant affordable housing component for those making below 80 percent of area median income. The project architect is Morris Adjmi.

The four parcels that will be redeveloped sit adjacent to the university and Union Market, in an area bounded by Penn Street, Florida Avenue, 5th Street and the university itself (map).

Parcels 1 and 2 sit on the northeast corner of the intersection of 6th Street and Florida Avenue NE (map), and will be intended for use by Gallaudet students, staff and faculty. The parcels will include a large plaza that is described as a gateway to the campus, a visitor’s center and a series of “green fingers” or recreational passageways between buildings. In addition to the visitors center, there will be two other buildings on Parcel 1 that will have residential, office, retail and university uses.

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Morris Adjmi designed Atlantic Plumbing at 2030 8th Street NW.

Parcel 2 will feature a campus promenade, as well as two more residential buildings. The retail for Parcels 1 and 2 will front 6th Street NE.

Parcel 3 is bordered by 5th Street, Morse Street, 6th Street and Neal Place (map). Parcel 4 sits between 5th Street, a private alley, 6th Street and Penn Street. Both sites are located directly in front of Union Market on land currently used as a parking lot.

Both of these parcels will have a heavy retail component, as well as the majority of residences planned for the redevelopment. Parcel 3 will have an open air retail market that will feature a number of local artisans, as well as approximately 850 to 900 residences and 405 parking spaces. Parcel 4 will consist of an “iconic building” with 725 to 775 residential units, 353 parking spaces and 54,000 square feet of retail space.

A specific focus of the plan is to increase the connectivity of pedestrian spaces and roadways between the University and the market. Specifically, wayfinding tools that use DeafSpace principles aimed at alerting drivers and pedestrians to one another’s presence will be incorporated into the redevelopment.

the redevelopment of four university parcels along 6th Street NE

See other articles related to: union market, morris adjmi, jbg, gallaudet university, gallaudet

This article originally published at http://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/gallaudet_jbg_file_plans_for_massive_university_redevelopment/10462

1 Comment

  1. skidrowedc@gmail.com said at 3:36 pm on Friday October 16, 2015:

    Seems like a generally thoughtful plan.  My main concern is that the two primary buildings will have such huge footprints that any meaningful sense of “community” will be almost impossible to create.  Parcel 3’s 850-900 apartments, divided over 11 stories, yields a whopping 77-82 units per floor.  Sociological and psychological research shows that somewhere around 10 units/story, neighbors stop knowing each other, that there is no sense of “community” or “neighborhood.”  This true regardless of the income levels and other demographic factors of the residents.  Apartment buildings with huge floorplates and endless corridors with scores of doors are soulless at best, nightmarish at worst.  DC already has too many of them, most constructed in the past 10 years.

    The solution is to have more elevator cores & egress stairs, which limit the length of corridors and quantity of units that open off a given corridor.  This increases costs, of course, but then most worthwhile things increase costs. (It also allows for more multiple-exposure units and other desirable floor plans which the endless-corridor buildings can’t provide.)  The question is whether it’s value-added overall—to the future residents, to the community at large.  My pitch is that it is. 

    The nature of a Planned Unit Development is a developer asking we the citizens for permission to build much larger than by-right zoning allows.  In return, they offer “public amenity” proffers.  Affordable housing, nowadays, is central, and that’s appropriate.  But more cores, as a means of creating future community should also be a legitimate public amenity.

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