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270 Units, ALDI and a Meow Wolf: Fort Totten’s Art Place Gets Key Approval

by Nena Perry-Brown

Newer rendering of food hall entrance from 4th Street. Click to enlarge.

One of the city's most exciting and dynamic mixed-use developments is moving forward.

New rendering of the HUB, the FEZ and the grocery store. Click to enlarge.

This week, the Zoning Commission granted approval to the planned-unit development for the next phase of Art Place in Fort Totten. The PUD will deliver 270 apartments; a food hall; a 24,000 square-foot ALDI; 35,000 square feet of retail; and a Family Entertainment Zone (FEZ) that will incorporate a 30,000 square-foot Explore! Children’s museum and a 78,000 square-foot location of experiential outlet Meow Wolf to the approximately five acres at South Dakota Avenue and Ingraham Street NE (map)Next Stop...Riggs Park reported on the approval yesterday. 

Newer rendering of development on 4th Street. Click to enlarge.

The project will also include 30 artist live/work units, ground-floor studios and makerspaces leased at below-market rate, a pedestrian bridge between the residential buildings, an outdoor dining rooftop terrace, and will transform 4th Street into a woonerf-style shared street. The artist housing units will be affordable for 20 years at 60 percent of area median income, rather than the previously proposed 80 percent. The Morris and Gwendolyn Cafritz Foundation is leading the development; Perkins Eastman is the executive architect of this phase while Studio Shanghai is the design architect. 

Newer rendering of development from 4th Street toward pedestrian bridge. Click to enlarge.

The design of the development has been refined somewhat since Commission hearings earlier this year, with the palette of the residential buildings darkened and balconies and bay windows added. The tubular element of the FEZ has also been simplified and will no longer have kinetic rotating fins. 

Older rendering down 4th Street looking towards Ingraham and the Modern. Click to enlarge.

Part of the community benefits include discounted admission to Meow Wolf for District residents, and discounted admission to the children's museum for residents of Wards 4 and 5.

Newer streetscape rendering of grocery store. Click to enlarge.

The development is expected to break ground in the first quarter of 2020 and deliver in the third quarter of 2022; the developer plans on filing PUD applications for the final two phases by the end of 2024 and the end of 2030.

Newer rendering from Ingraham toward central plaza. Click to enlarge.
Newer rendering looking northward from Kennedy. Click to enlarge.

This article originally published at https://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/270-units-aldi-and-a-meow-wolf-fort-tottens-art-place-gets-key-approval/15519