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The Development Rundown For Georgetown and the West End

by Nena Perry-Brown

UrbanTurf is continuing its early 2016 look at residential developments in the planning and construction phases for neighborhoods around DC. This week, we are focusing on Georgetown and West End. While the developments here are on a smaller scale compared to other city neighborhoods, their construction will have a big impact on the area going forward.


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Square 37: West End Library and Residences

The Square 37 development, located at 23rd and L Streets NW (map), will see the construction of a new West End Public Library, serving as the ground-floor anchor of the mixed-use project. The completed building will include 300,000 square feet of luxury residential units comprised of 71 condominiums and 93 apartments, in addition to 7,400 square feet of retail. A three-level underground parking garage will provide 246 spaces. All of the residential units will feature the same high-end finishes and share a rooftop deck and swimming pool, gym, business center and other common areas. The library will front L Street, while a cafe at the 23rd Street corner provides a segue to retail along 23rd. Developer Eastbanc is partnering with WDG Architects, Ten Arquitectos and Clark Construction to deliver the project in the second quarter of 2017.


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Nobu-Anchored Office-to-Condo Conversion

PRP Real Estate Investment Management is converting the Class B office building at 2501 M Street NW (map) into residences. Specifically, the lower six floors of the nine-story building are being converted into five levels of high-end condominiums and ground-floor retail space. The top three floors, which were already condos, will not be changed. World-renowned Japanese restaurant Nobu will lead the redevelopment wave with an opening later this year, while the condos will start delivering in 2017. CORE is handling the design of 2501 M, and the Mayhood Company is managing sales and marketing.


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West Heating Plant

The Four Seasons, the Levy Group, and the Georgetown Companies are working toward demolishing the Georgetown West Heating Plant, with aims to replace it with a 60-70 unit luxury condominium building. A one-acre public park will also be appended to the site at 1051-1055 29th Street NW (map).

The high-end condos will sell for over $1,500 a square foot and will remove what is, to most, an eyesore in the neighborhood. Architect David Adjaye has presented a modern marble, bronze and glass structure that he says will evoke the city’s monuments and Georgetown’s warmth. Even if the remainder of the bureaucratically-dense approval process goes smoothly, completion of this development is still at least three years away.


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Eastbanc Gas Station Conversion

Eastbanc plans to build an eight-unit condo development with a restaurant at 2715 Pennsylvania Avenue NW (map). The restaurant on the cellar and ground floors will have outdoor seating at the corner of Pennsylvania Avenue and M Street NW. Architect Eduardo Souta de Moura has also planned a penthouse gym and terrace, and the units will average 2,000 square feet apiece.


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Alexander Hall

The former Alexander Memorial Baptist Church at 2709-2715 N Street NW (map) was sold to an SGA Companies affiliate early last year, and is being converted into a residential development. Set for delivery later this year, three, three-bedroom/2.5-bathroom condos will range in size from 2,100 to 2,500 square feet, with prices in the $2.5 to $2.95 million range. A seven-bedroom, seven-bathroom home that used to be the church rectory will be sold as a single-family home for $7.95 million. New owners at Alexander Hall will get a special perk with their new home: access to amenities at the Four Seasons hotel two blocks away.


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Latham Hotel Redevelopment

Thor Equities is still in the closing phase of acquiring the former Latham Hotel at 3000 M Street NW (map) from SB-Urban. Thor has plans to create a new hotel/retail concept at the site. Previous plans for the site included a 10-story, 125,000 square-foot building that would house furnished micro-units.


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Georgetown Hillside

Another Eastbanc-helmed gas station redevelopment, Georgetown Hillside would bring 28 condominium units to the one-acre site at 3601-3607 M Street NW (map). The two- and three-bedroom luxury units would replace the Key Bridge Exxon gas station near the infamous “Exorcist Steps”. It remains to be seen if this project, designed by Handel Architects, will actually move forward. Eastbanc’s Mary Mottershead told UrbanTurf in January that the firm’s plans for the site are “unclear” right now.

residential developments coming to Georgetown and West End

This article originally published at http://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/the_new_residential_developments_coming_to_georgetown_and_the_west_end/10973

2 Comments

  1. Brett said at 4:20 pm on Friday March 11, 2016:

    So Eastbank has two prominent projects and two ugly renderings that can’t get approved. Sounds to me like Eastbanc should stop commissioning crappy designs from unimaginative architects.

  1. skidrowedc@gmail.com said at 11:49 am on Sunday March 13, 2016:

    It’s pretty rich (and perhaps displays UrbanTurf’s modest conflict of interest) that the West Heating Plant is called “an eyesore in the neighborhood” whereas no judgment is made on the architecture of any of the other projects.  Likewise that the West Heating Plant’s approvals issues are viewed as"bureaucratically dense”—as if they were created by the bureaucrats—rather than the logical result when a developer makes a brazen attempt to ignore their own contractual agreements with government entities.

    Re Brett and Eastbanc’s choice of architects: I don’t think the problem is the lack of imagination of the architects chosen.  It’s the mismatch between the talents of the architects, sites and programs.  The West End is a decent match, and the results have promise. The Eastbanc buildings promise to add some zing to the pleasant-but-dull West End.

    Georgetown, however, is not a good match.  In particular, the 2715 Pennsylvania site, a mixed-use building, and Portuguese architect Eduardo Souta de Moura are a horrible combination.  Souta de Moura’s portfolio consists of austerely beautiful, rigorously isolated minimalist buildings, almost all single-family houses or museums.  He has experience in older (“historic”) areas, but none remotely like Georgetown. The result is awful.  Looks like a Modernist college campus building that was high style when constructed in 1965—that is, having no relationship either the time period of its own projected construction (the near future) or the Georgetown historic district.  Georgetowners, you need to start raising the funds to buy the land to become a park.  You have the money, and it’s the only decent solution. 

    Handel and the Exxon site are a somewhat better match, particularly since the program is all-residential (not mixed-use) and the site is somewhat isolated.  The results are better, although I’m not shedding any tears if the project dies.

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