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119 Apartments and a Two-Unit Shotgun House Headed for the Hill

by Nena Perry-Brown

119 Apartments and a Two-Unit Shotgun House Headed for the Hill: Figure 1
An early rendering of 1234 Pennsylvania Avenue

Last night, Sassan Gharai Architects (SGA) presented community members on Capitol Hill with the redevelopment plans for the shotgun house on E Street and the abutting current site of the Frager’s Garden Center on Pennsylvania Avenue. Approximately 121 residential units and 5,500 square feet of retail will be created on the two sites.

The Shotgun House at 1229 E Street SE (map) will be dissembled and reconstructed into a two-unit flat, while the Frager’s Garden Center at 1234 Pennsylvania Avenue SE (map) will be replaced with a four-story mixed-use project containing roughly 119 apartments and retail space.

The retail space on the southeast corner of the site could potentially be occupied by a small high-end grocer that carries prepared foods; discussions with Streets Market and Cafe are currently on the table.

The narrow apartments will primarily be 400-550 square-foot units that will come partially-furnished with mattresses, sofas and coffee tables. SGA also anticipates that these units will rent for a few hundred dollars less than a typical English basement in the neighborhood, with $1,200 a month as a possible starting point.

The apartment building will be 50 feet high with a 12 to 15-foot tall penthouse level which will contain the building amenities. There will be a fitness center, wading pool, game room, lounge, shared kitchen and four guest-suite units for residents. An underground parking level will also provide 21 parking spaces to the site per the revised zoning code.

In addition to the redevelopment plans above, an existing historic townhouse at 1230 Pennsylvania Avenue will be partially demolished and renovated into a live/work space that could potentially serve the retail tenant. The apartment building will be fashioned to surround the townhouse and will also be stepped back 25 feet at that point.

The facade of the apartment building will have various articulations and colors, with the garage framed by gray brick and the main residential portion a dark red brick. The retail portion will be a more varied orange-pomegranate brick and there will also be bays along the residential and retail areas in both the front and the rear. The residential entrance will be marked with a multi-colored glass canopy.

119 Apartments and a Two-Unit Shotgun House Headed for the Hill: Figure 2
A drawing of the reconstructed shotgun house

Meanwhile, the Shotgun House will be shifted over so that it touches 1227 E Street, and a 33 foot-tall addition will be constructed around it to create a two-unit structure. After decades of contentious debate over the future of the House and whether it could be salvaged, it will undergo an extensive reconstruction.

Ideally, work on the Shotgun House project will begin this year. Both sites are being bundled into a single application and will require several layers of approval before moving forward. The ANC 6B planning, zoning and transportation committee will review the project this coming Tuesday and it will go before the Historic Preservation Review Board this month. The Capitol Hill Restoration Society, District Department of Transportation and Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs are also some of the organizations that also have a say in moving the project forward.

SGA acquired development rights for the Frager’s Garden Center property after inking a 100-year ground lease with owner Larry Quillian; principal architect Sassan Gharai stated that he hopes to break ground on the apartment building next spring.

1229 E Street SE

This article originally published at https://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/119_apartments_and_a_two-unit_shotgun_house_headed_for_the_hill/11423

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