Last year, Events DC presented fleshed-out short-term concepts for the redevelopment of RFK Stadium and the surrounding 190-acre campus. Since then, DC United has played its last game there in preparation to move to an under-construction stadium at Buzzard Point, leaving RFK mostly fallow besides regular farmers' markets and occasional community, entertainment and recreational sports events.
Now, Events DC has provided a more definitive timeline to further activate the site, including a plan to open three multi-purpose recreational fields next spring.
As part of the first phase of the short-term redevelopment, the asphalt of surface parking lot 7 will be replaced with two full-sized soccer and lacrosse fields flanking a youth-sized soccer field in a north-south arc parallel to the Anacostia Riverwalk Trail. Each field will have artificial turf and will be able to accommodate two games simultaneously. The youth soccer field will also have a baseball diamond on either side.
This phase is envisioned to incorporate a playground, picnic area, and a "celebration pavilion" for community events, medal ceremonies and the like. An existing parking lot with 315 spaces will be rehabbed to provide vehicular access to the site; there will also be a drop-off point.
Events DC has created spec architectural drawings of the fields and accompanying buildings and is currently preparing a request for proposals for a designer and construction contractor; they expect to choose contractors by this spring. A zoning text amendment will be required for approval of the recreation fields. Assuming that the approval process is completed this summer, the fields will be on track to open to the public in spring of 2019.
Further down the line, Events DC plans to deliver a 61,000 square-foot Market Hall with a mix of fresh food and dining options, including groceries and prepared food. The hall will be adjacent to a farmer's market and community gardens; the interior space will have an open feel and contain nearly 5,000 square feet of seating.
The 350,000 square-foot sports and recreation complex sited between Independence Avenue and the riverfront is also still on the boards, potentially creating indoor access to dozens of activities from basketball, batting cages and bowling to go-karts, trampolines and an ice rink.
Events DC is currently consulting on the plans for both the market hall and the sports complex and anticipates releasing a request for expressions of interest for development partners this spring. If the approval process goes smoothly, the market hall will deliver in 2020 followed by the complex in 2020 or 2021.
The three pedestrian bridges connecting the campus to River Terrace and Heritage and Kingman Islands are also still priorities, as is an interactive memorial dedicated to Robert F. Kennedy; however, these items have much more involved approval processes associated with them.
The RFK site is federal land which the city is leasing; the current term expires in 2038. Brailsford & Dunlavey and OMA New York's design team are also partners in the redevelopment.
This article originally published at http://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/a_market_hall_and_recreation_fields_the_timeline_for_the_short_term_plans/13489
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