MRP Wins Bid to Develop 965 Florida Avenue

by UrbanTurf Staff

image
Rendering for 965 Florida Avenue.

The Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development has made its decision as to who will redevelop a sought-after Florida Avenue NW parcel.

The city gave the go-ahead to the team made up of MRP Realty, Ellis Development Group and Fundrise to develop 965 Florida Avenue NW (map), the Washington Business Journal is reporting. The initial plans that the team has in mind for the site include a 370,000 square-foot mixed-use building with a residential component and a market made up of stores and small grocers on the ground-level.

image
Rendering of planned retail.

The MRP-led team was going up against a mixed-use proposal from the team of JBG, Gragg & Associates and Moddie Turay Comapany. The plans for the JBG proposal included a 125-room hotel, 70,000 square feet of office space targeted at creative and local uses, a previously-reported Harris Teeter, a 100-unit condo development with 22 affordable units, 250 apartments, 200 micro units and the W Street extension, a large outdoor plaza.

image
Rendering for 965 Florida Avenue.

The decision to go with the MRP proposal hinged at least partially on that proposal’s plan to create more affordable housing, a point that JBG takes issue with.

“The JBG/Gragg proposed plan actually provided 22 more affordable housing units than proposed by the MPR/Ellis plan, for a total of 80 affordable units,” JBG’s James Nozar wrote in an email to UrbanTurf. “It goes without saying that we are very disappointed in the city’s decision given our tremendous investment in this proposal and in the surrounding area.”

See other articles related to: mrp realty, jbg, 965 florida avenue

This article originally published at http://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/mrp_wins_bid_to_develop_965_florida_avenue/7393

27 Comments

  1. Chip Rodgers said at 3:45 pm on Tuesday July 30, 2013:

    So much inventory coming…worries me. One of these coming Columbia Heights and Shaw projects may be going rental.

  1. charlie said at 3:54 pm on Tuesday July 30, 2013:

    what the hell? I thought JBG was a shoe in.  The harris teeter would have been a great addition.

  1. JB said at 3:57 pm on Tuesday July 30, 2013:

    Wow what a diaster.  The JBG was much better and we need a grocery store.  The Giant in ColHeights is a diaster.

  1. Jay said at 4:04 pm on Tuesday July 30, 2013:

    Very disappointing.  This area needed a grocery store, and Ellis projects take forever to get built.

  1. Bright Side said at 4:42 pm on Tuesday July 30, 2013:

    Great! (no not sarcasm.) That means the Howard Town Center can still attract a grocery store. The Howard Town Center is a bit of a long shot but it is even less likely without an anchor tenant like a grocery store.

  1. JB said at 5:36 pm on Tuesday July 30, 2013:

    The Howard Town Center will NEVER happen.  They have been trying to do that for YEARS.

  1. Ace said at 6:52 pm on Tuesday July 30, 2013:

    The market concept will be awesome if done like Union Market attracting a mix of some cool funky little spots that offer a variety of services like coffee, butcher, pastries, farmers market etc…and if it is open all the time (not just on weekends).  Did their presentation divulge how they would identify the tenants and lease the spaces?

  1. Ace said at 6:55 pm on Tuesday July 30, 2013:

    Also…this could potentially be more of a place to come and hang out (one of those “third places”). While I do love HT for groceries… I just go there, grab my stuff, and come home.  This market might be a place I want to take out of town friends to or my parents for an afternoon. I just hope they do it right!

  1. Bright Side said at 6:56 pm on Tuesday July 30, 2013:

    Maybe, but all parties would be leaving a lot of money on the table. I would have said a house will NEVER sell for over a million in Brookland (actually I would have said 800k) A house just closed at 900k+.  I stick to my original point, the BEST chance for HTC to happen is for an anchor grocery store to sign on as part of the development.

  1. George said at 8:06 pm on Tuesday July 30, 2013:

    @ Chip, You’re worried about too much housing inventory? That’s how rents go down, isn’t it?

    I’m glad that DMPED prioritized affordable housing here.

  1. charlie said at 8:06 pm on Tuesday July 30, 2013:

    its even worse
    “What put MRP over the top, according to Hoskins’ office, was an offer to build more affordable housing, an agreement to submit to the District’s planned-unit development process (ensuring community coordination) and its willingness to pay more for the land.”

    So, no supermarket, and more poor people!

  1. AC said at 9:23 pm on Tuesday July 30, 2013:

    Hey Charlie you (part of this comment has been removed for its inappropriate nature), whats wrong with affordable housing and how does it mean “poor people”. It’s a difference between affordable and section 8. Everybody dont make 200k a year ok.

  1. jag said at 9:38 pm on Tuesday July 30, 2013:

    I’ll second the “screw you” @ charlie.

  1. The Editors said at 12:37 pm on Wednesday July 31, 2013:

    UT Readers,

    We intend for the comments on UrbanTurf to be appropriate, respectful, relevant, and constructive.

    If the nature or tone of reader comments violates any of these qualities for a particular article, we will close them for that article. We make the assessment at our sole discretion.

    In other words, please play nice.

    Thanks,

    The Editors

  1. Mike said at 1:16 pm on Wednesday July 31, 2013:

    I literally live across the street from this parcel.  I have mixed feelings, on one hand, I was NOT looking forward to apts/condos/HOTEL/business offices going up but was really looking forward to the Harris Teeter.  Yay, we won’t have the hotel or business offices but now we’ll have a lousy, expensive, souped up food court.  Wonderful!

  1. Bill said at 1:20 pm on Wednesday July 31, 2013:

    Most of the “affordable” housing in these developments historically have been reserved for households making 80% of area median income.  For a family of 4 in DC, that works out to about $86,000 of annual income.  [With perhaps a small number of the affordable units reserved for lower incomes.]  Not exactly “poor.”  Though I don’t know the specifics of the requirements attached to this offering….

  1. Bright Side said at 2:05 pm on Wednesday July 31, 2013:

    per WBJ -

    ‘MRP’s win is potentially very good news for the planned Howard Town Center. And the Howard Town Center, located in the 2100 block of Georgia Avenue NW a block-and-a-half from the Florida Avenue property, could use some very good news.

    If Harris Teeter is out, then the town center’s planned supermarket would appear to be in a much stronger position — if Howard University and its recently exiled development partners can work out their legal issues.”

    I actually liked that a Hotel was a part of the other bid. The U street area is popular people want to stay in the hot / popular area, U street needs a hotel, nothing huge, something like a Kimpton Hotel.

  1. J.M. Keynes said at 2:28 pm on Wednesday July 31, 2013:

    too much housing inventory? That’s how rents go down, isn’t it?

    In theory.  But look at all the new units in DC that have gone up in the last five or so years.  How much have rents gone down during that time?

  1. James said at 2:30 pm on Wednesday July 31, 2013:

    Both proposals included dedicated affordable housing units ranging from 30-80% of AMI, so, they were providing units to those with much lower income levels.  Regarding the hotel, the stated vision in the JBG proposal was for a smaller independent hotel - like a Kimpton.

  1. D said at 2:35 pm on Wednesday July 31, 2013:

    How did fundrise jump from a <10,000 SF re-development play to a JV on a 300,000 SF re-development deal.  I wonder if they were brought to the table to help the bigger fish (in this case Ellis and MRP)get preferential treatment from the city, as they seem to be garnering alot of praise for the community based/crowd funding model.  If that is the case, will they/their ‘investors’ get a preferential equity return or just stand shoulder-to-shoulder on whatever piece of the pie they end up contributing?

  1. john said at 3:49 pm on Wednesday July 31, 2013:

    Maybe JBG has too much on it’s plate right now?

  1. ab said at 5:25 pm on Wednesday July 31, 2013:

    This is a horrible, shady decision. The JBG plan actually offered more affordable units, would bring in more money for the city, and would connect W St. to ease traffic, which is a no-brainer. Not to mention how badly the area needs an actual grocery store as opposed to a food court.

  1. Payton Chung said at 5:46 pm on Wednesday July 31, 2013:

    JBG has been talking to hotel operators for several years about U Street, but probably couldn’t cement a deal soon enough there and went forward with apartments instead. It’s a bit of a shame, because U St. would be better than Florida for non-residential. While I agree that a Kimpton would make sense at that location, their current hotel properties are mostly Starwood, Marriott, or Hilton branded. A 120-key hotel by JBG would probably be an Aloft, rather than a W or Autograph or Monaco.

    @D: yes, Fundrise was brought on as a junior partner to MRP; they will raise a small slice of the equity ($300K according to their site) as a means of proving community support for their plan. They (actually Westmill) will not be developing or managing the project, though. And yes, Fundrise deals are structured so that all equity investors are “shoulder to shoulder.”

  1. Payton Chung said at 5:50 pm on Wednesday July 31, 2013:

    To be clear, this is the first public offering where Fundrise was just a platform—a la Kickstarter—for a developer who is not Westmill. (Other developers have used Fundrise to manage/advertise their private equity offerings.) Westmill is not a partner in the MRP development.

  1. U Street Resident said at 12:03 pm on Thursday August 1, 2013:
  1. Michael Connor said at 8:49 am on Friday August 2, 2013:

    I hope everyone who has written or is otherwise outraged by this decision to go with the Ellis proposal over the more unified, more socially conscious JBG proposal will sign the change.org petition and write to Councilman Jim Graham about this.  You can reach Jim at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

  1. U Street Resident said at 6:01 pm on Saturday August 3, 2013:

    The response below from Councilmember Jim Graham:

    Dear Friends:

    I have been paying close attention to the dozens of emails objecting to the recent award of 965 Florida. I have carefully read the recent email from Mr. DeWitt as well as the statement by Deputy Mayor Hoskins (see below). I am also now responding (via Bcc’s) to my Ward 1 constituents who have written me. Thank you for writing me.

    I have rarely experienced in Ward 1 such a widespread and negative community reaction to a development decision. Clearly there are a great many neighborhood people who are disappointed and unhappy with the choice and justification that has been offered thus far.

    This is a major decision affecting the future of development in the eastern sector of Ward 1.

    I am also sensitive that the legal process requires a decision to be made at this stage by the Mayor and his advisors. I also know that this decision will, in the future, require Council approval. That would include the property disposition.

    But this does bring to mind the Foggy Bottom outcry to the initial decision by the Fenty administration to award the Stevens School contract in 2009. That Ward 2 property prompted the expression of strong views by my Council colleagues including CM Jack Evans and others. Ultimately, the following year, the award was vacated, in substantial part, on the grounds that there was so much community opposition.

    I appreciate the statement that has been issued by Deputy Mayor Victor Hoskins.

    But, as a first step, I think more detailed explanation of the rationale for the decision is necessary.

    I am now requesting that detailed justification including documentation appropriate for release (not involving proprietary information) .

    Bests Councilmember Jim Graham

Join the discussion

UrbanTurf now requires registration in order to post comments. Register here, or login below if you are already registered.

Click here if you forgot your password.




 

Alex Khachaturian

Slate Properties

646-295-5179

Serving:

Glover Park

Columbia Heights

14th Street Corridor

NEW!

DC Real Estate Guides

Short guides to navigating the DC-area real estate market

We’ve collected all our helpful guides for buying, selling and renting in and around Washington, DC in one place. Visit guides.urbanturf.com or start browsing below!

Northern Virginia

Profiles of 14 neighborhoods across Northern Virginia

Ballston
Looking to Give People A Reason to Stay Past 6pm
Clarendon
Happily Straddling the Line Between City and Suburb
Columbia Pike
Arlington’s Neglected Stepchild is Getting a Makeover
Crystal City
Turning Lemons into Lemonade
Lyon Village
Developing An Air of Exclusivity?
Rosslyn
Hitting Its Growth Spurt
Shirlington
An Urban Village Hitting Its Stride
Del Ray
Virginia’s Small Town Near the Big City
Eisenhower Avenue
The Vibrancy Might Take a Few Years
Huntington
The Quiet Neighborhood By the Beltway
Old Town
Mayberry By The Potomac
Parkfairfax
132 Commerical-Free Acres
Downtown Falls Church
Staying the Same in the Midst of Change
Tysons Corner
Radical Change Could Be On The Way

See more Northern Virginia »

Maryland

Profiles of 14 neighborhoods in suburban Maryland

Annapolis
Small-Town Living in the State Capital
Bethesda
Bedroom Community Gets Buzzing Cache
Cabin John
In With The New While Maintaining the Old
Chevy Chase
Affluence, Green Lawns and Pricey Homes
Downtown Silver Spring
Experiencing a Resurgence After a Bumpy History
Potomac
A Suburb on Steroids
Rockville Town Square
Despite the Dynamism, Still Somewhat Generic
Takoma Park
More Than a Little Bit Quirky
Wheaton
A Foodie Magnet on the Verge of Change
Capitol Heights
Kudzu, Front Porches and Crime
Hyattsville
Glass Half Full or Half Empty?
Mount Rainier
Artists, Affordable Homes and A Silo Full of Corn
National Harbor
A Development Rises Next to the Potomac
Riverdale Park
A Town Looking For Its Identity

See more Maryland »

Northwest DC

30+ neighborhood profiles for the city's biggest quadrant

16th Street Heights
DC's Sleeper Neighborhood
Bloomingdale
Where (Almost) Everyone Knows Your Name
AU Park
One of DC’s Last Frontiers Before the Suburbs
Brightwood
DC’s Northern Neighborhood on the Cusp
Burleith
DC’s 535 House Neighborhood
Cathedral Heights
Do You Know Where That Is?
Chevy Chase DC
Not to Be Confused With the Other Chevy Chase
Cleveland Park
Coming Back After A Rough Year
Columbia Heights
DC’s Most Diverse Neighborhood, But For How Long?
Crestwood
An Island of Serenity East of the Park
Dupont Circle
The Best of DC (For a Price)
Foggy Bottom & West End
Where the Institutional Meets the International
Forest Hills
Ambassadors and Adventurous Architecture
Fort Totten
Five Years Could Make a Big Difference
Foxhall Village
350 Homes Just West of Georgetown
Friendship Heights
A Shopping Mecca With a Few Places to Live
Georgetown
History, Hoyas and H&M
Glover Park
One of DC’s Preppier and More Family-Friendly Neighborhoods
Kalorama
A Posh View From Embassy Row
LeDroit Park
A Quiet Enclave in the Middle of the City
Logan Circle
Trendy Now, But Not By Accident
Mount Pleasant
Sought-After Homes Surround Main Street in Transition
Mount Vernon Triangle
From Seedy to Sought-After
Palisades
The Long, Skinny Neighborhood at the City’s Northwest Edge
Park View
It’s Not Petworth
Penn Quarter/Chinatown
DC’s Go-Go-Go Neighborhood
Petworth
Getting a Vibrancy of Its Own
Shaw
The Duke’s Former Stomping Ground
Shepherd Park
DC’s Garden of Diversity
Spring Valley
A Suburb With a DC Zip Code
Takoma
Not To Be Confused With Takoma Park
Tenleytown
Not Quite Like Its Neighbors
U Street Corridor
The Difference a Decade Makes
Woodley Park
Deceptively Residential
Adams Morgan
No Longer DC’s Hippest Neighborhood, But Still Loved by Residents

See more Northwest DC »

Southwest DC

The little quadrant that could

Southwest Waterfront
A Neighborhood Where A Change Is Gonna Come

See more Southwest DC »

Northeast DC

Profiles of 10 neighborhoods in NE

Brookland
New Development Could Shake Up Pastoral Peace
Deanwood
A Little Bit of Country Just Inside the District’s Borders
Eckington
Not to Be Confused With Bloomingdale
H Street
A Place To Party, and To Settle Down
Langdon
The Northeast Neighborhood That Few Know About
Michigan Park
A Newsletter-On-Your-Doorstep Community
NoMa
Evolving from a Brand to a Neighborhood
Rosedale
Ripe for Investment Right About Now
Trinidad
The Difference 5 Years Makes
Woodridge
Big Houses, A Dusty Commercial Strip and Potential

See more Northeast DC »

Southeast DC

6 'hoods from Capitol Hill to East of the River

Capitol Riverfront
Still Growing
Hill East
Capitol Hill’s Lesser Known Neighbor
Congress Heights
Gradually Rising
Hillcrest
Notable for Its Neighborliness
Historic Anacostia
Future Promise Breeds Cautious Optimism
Eastern Market
A More European Way of Living

See more Southeast DC »

Upcoming Seminars ▾