1,100 Units and Park Space: A First Look at the Sursum Corda Redevelopment

by Nena Perry-Brown

Sursum Corda redevelopment. Click to enlarge.

Just weeks ago, demolition began at the Sursum Corda Housing Cooperative, a 148-townhouse lower-income community in DC. Now, UrbanTurf can provide a first look at the redevelopment plans for the site.

In 2016, 1.3 million square feet of new development was approved for the 6.7-acre site bounded by First and North Capitol Streets and L and M Streets NW (map). Following Toll Brothers' purchase of the site earlier this year, those plans are shifting somewhat, going from 1,131 dwelling units across five buildings to 1,131 dwelling units across four buildings.

Aerial massing view; Phase I in foreground. Click to enlarge.

A Toll Brothers-affiliate has applied to modify the previously-approved first-stage planned-unit development (PUD) and to submit a second-stage PUD application for the first phase of the two-phase development, giving us our first look at the aesthetics of the buildings. WDG Architecture is the master planner.

As previously approved, the first phase of development would sit on the 2.44 acres of the site (South Parcel) between First Street and First Place, the latter which would be extended into the surrounding street grid. Those plans will change as follows:

Southwest Building in foreground. Click to enlarge.
  • Building 1A, previously envisioned as an 8-story building with 176 units, will instead be the Southwest Building, a 7-story building with 160 units and 11,339 square feet of amenities/common space.
Southeast Building. Click to enlarge.
  • Building 1B was previously approved as a 182-unit, 78 foot-tall building, while Building 1C was approved as a 63-unit, 65.75 foot-tall building with 8,315 square feet of commercial or amenity space. Now, those buildings will be combined into the Southeast Building, sitting at 8 stories on the L Street side and up to 10 stories toward Pierce Street, delivering 365 units and 22,000 square feet of amenities.
Temporary park space on North Parcel. Click to enlarge.
  • The 12,608 square-foot lot to the east of First Place will be maintained as open green space.
  • Additionally, the originally-approved 272 parking spaces to be delivered in this phase will instead be 346 spaces accessible on First Place south of Pierce Street. The loading dock will also be shifted from L Street to First Place north of L Street.

The Southeast Building was designed based on the assumption that L Street will be widened from 40 feet to 90 feet. In case that does not happen, the development team has also submitted alternate plans for this building with a maximum height of 80 feet.

Aerial rendering. Click to enlarge.

The second phase of development on the North Parcel would change as follows:

  • Building 2A/B would go from delivering 348 units across 6-11 stories to being identified as the Northwest Building, delivering 298 units and 19,100 square feet of retail across 5-10 stories at the same height, along with 16,945 square feet of amenities.
  • Building 2C/D would go from delivering 362 units, 11,325 square feet of retail and 8,940 square feet of office/retail to being identified as the Northeast Building, delivering 308 units and 15,147 square feet of amenities. In either case, the building would be 6-10 stories high, ranging from 68.93-106.93 feet tall. 

199 of the housing units in the redevelopment will be affordable to households earning up to 60 percent of area median income (AMI), and 136 will be studios to four-bedrooms set aside to accommodate returning residents and tailored to their incomes. 

Razing at the site is expected to be complete by year's end. A zoning hearing has not yet been scheduled.

This article originally published at https://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/1100-units-and-park-space-a-first-look-at-the-sursum-corda-redevelopment/14779

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