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Developer of Massive Anacostia Project Seeks Time Extension After TIF Funding Seems Imminent

by Nena Perry-Brown

A rendering of Reunion Square office building, facing west. Courtesy of Hickok Cole. Click to enlarge.

A nine-building, 1.5 million square foot development near the Anacostia Metro station (map) recently got a promising nudge forward. Mayor Bowser recently announced that the administration is poised to move ahead with Tax Increment Financing (TIF) for Reunion Square. 

A previous bill to use TIF funds for the project languished in the council last fall after Councilmember Trayon White raised concerns about it not going far enough to add affordable units and ensure local residents' access to jobs and other benefits. “This agreement is the result of months of hard work in negotiating with the development team to ensure that this development is responsible, inclusive, and equitable,” Councilmember White said this week. 

A rendering of Reunion Square office building, from W Street. Courtesy of Hickok Cole. Click to enlarge.

Just before the announcement of the TIF bill, the Four Points and Curtis Investment Group-led development team filed for a two-year extension on the original planned-unit development (PUD) order, which was filed in 2013. If approved, the extension would give the team two years to file second-stage PUD applications for two of the buildings in the development. 

The Reunion Square development will create 481 apartments and 943,000 square feet of office space, as well as more than 140,000 square feet of retail. The recent negotiations have increased the number of affordable units to 143 (134 for senior housing). Twenty-five of the affordable units will be for households earning less than 30 percent of median family income (MFI), and 95 will be for households earning less than 60 percent of MFI. A small portion of the retail space will be affordable for local retail, while 5,000 square feet of the office space will be affordable for Ward 8 businesses. The development will also deliver an affordable new home for the Anacostia Playhouse and a new headquarters for the DC Department of Health. 

If the bill passes, the project is expected to be the first ever in Ward 8 to use tax-increment financing, a provision which allows the city to invest funds borrowed from the expected future tax revenue a project would generate. The TIF bill will likely be introduced next month. Hickok Cole is the master planner of the development.

All renderings have been updated since the article was originally published.

This article originally published at https://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/reunion-square-developer-seeks-time-extension-after-tif-funding-seems-emine/15430

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