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The Craigslist Rental Scam

November 8, 2010 by  

So you’ve been searching on Craigslist for that perfect home to rent and the best possible when all of a sudden you see it.  The perfect home, not to mention that the price is about 1/2 of what you budgeted to spend.  Is it too good to be true?  It probably is.

Here’s one of the most common examples….

The search criteria

The listing…

Sounds too good to be true, doesnt it?  All the scammers did was copy the content of the real estate listing on HomeTryst….

So, I emailed them to see what would happen if I inquired about renting the home for my “family and I.”  Here’s what they responded with…

Hi,

I can see you are interested in the ad I have posted, I am currently in Spain with my family where we work as a volunteer with the Missionary, here is the site WWW.missionary-blogs.com for more details about why we are here in Spain.we spent less time in the States so we could not get a hold on any Realtor to handle this rent issue, although it was when we knew how long we are going to stay in Spain that we decided to rent out the house. However, the initial plan was to sell out the house. which we tried, but sometimes the agents inflates the price and it takes longer to sell we are telling you this in case you find the house on another website, that is the old advert So we need a tenant to take care of it but since  we are out of the state now, we have received some proposals regarding the rent because it is located in a very good area of Herndon, but we still have to make sure it is rented out to someone who can take good care of it.The keys to the House are right here with me and i could send it to you after all necessary agreement has be accepted by my family,It includes facilities such as water and heat laundry facilities, air condition, internet and telephone access and a car park and other necessary facilities, also comes with trash collection, pets are allowed as well as long as they are not destructive,we also want you to let us have trust in you as we always stand on our word.So if you know you are capable of the task,It is available for a  long lease.The monthly rental fee is $1600 per month including the utilities and the security deposit is $1600 which is refundable back to you at the end of your stay if nothing is damaged from my properties.It is not the money that is the main problem  but we want you to keep it tidy all the time so that we will be glad  to see it neat when we come for a check up.You will only be able to drive by the house for now but not have a look at the interior until we have sent the keys and documents of the house to you.So we wouldn’t want any violation on our property if finally rented by you.Please if you are ready now to occupy the house kindly provide the information below for record purpose

RENT QUESTIONNAIRE

PLEASE TELL US ABOUT YOURSELF

Full Name__________________________ ________________________
Home Phone (        ) ________________________
Date of Birth_________________________ ________
Other Phone (       ) ___________________
Current Address_______________________ ________Apt#________ City__________________ State______ Zip________
Reasons for Leaving_______________________ _____Rent $__________
Phone (       ) ____________________________
Are you married_______________________ _____
How many people will be living in the house_________________________ ___
Do you have a pet___________________________ _
Do you have a car___________________________ _
Occupation____________________ ________
Move In Date__________________________ __

House Address
12416 Willow Falls Drive, Herndon VA 20170

Looking forward to hear from you with all this details so that we can  have it in my file in case of issuing the receipt and contacting you. Await your reply so we can discuss on how to get the document and  the key to you.Please Note that your rent only starts counting after you have finally moved into thehouse,so you need not to worry about making the deposit payment now and not moving in immediately,all you’re doing is securing the house in your favor in order not to loose it to other interested applicants..

Hope to read from you soonest…
Thanks so much.
CADLE MICHAEL R

So…if it sounds TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE it probably is.

Your hole is our goal!

September 26, 2010 by  

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Good use of campaign signs

September 26, 2010 by  

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Bryant street nw flood

September 26, 2010 by  

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We met the owner who was painting his second story windows when up from the ground came the flood of thousands of gallons of waste water.

Interesting commuter rail in California – Caltrain

August 25, 2010 by  

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Iconic Local Bookstore Up For Sale

June 10, 2010 by  

Politics and Prose, an independent local bookstore located near the intersection of Connecticut Avenue and Nebraska Avenue NW, is up for sale.

The Washington Post reports that owners Carla Cohen, who is seriously ill, and Barbara Mead, are ready to sell.

“It’s time for us to stop and let somebody else take over for the future,” Meade said in an interview with The Post. “I just don’t have the energy like I used to,” Cohen adds.

Politics and Prose, established in 1984, is one of DC’s independent bookstore that became a neighborhood institution over the years.Politics and Prose is a premier stop for top-shelf novelists like Salman Rushdie whenever he tours the country to promote a new book.

Vacant Properties To Be Sold At Auction In DC

May 31, 2010 by  

The DC Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) announced yesterday that it will sold at auction 18 vacant government-owned properties on June 30th at the Convention Center.

Among the eighteen properties, which include single-family and multi-family buildings, are those located in the following addresses:

Barry Farms, Square 5889, Lot 0815
Woodridge, Square 4355, Lot 0058
Lily Ponds, Square 5116, Lot 0115
Columbia Heights, Square 2665, Lot 0032
Congress Heights, Square 6240, Lot 0054
Congress Heights, Square 6240, Lot 0060
Congress Heights, Square 6240, Lot 0063
Old City 2, Square 0363, Lot 0034
Congress Heights, Square 6239, Lot 0082
Deanwood, Square 5093, Lot 0140
Deanwood, Square 5176, Lot 0989
Columbia Heights, Square 3041, Lot 0012
Old City 2, Square 0507, Lot 0016
Old City 2, Square 0239, Lot 0804
Old City 2, Square 0475S, Lot 0033
Old City 2, Square 0361, Lot 0806
Old City 1, Square 0808, Lot 0069
Old City 1, Square, 0889, Lot 0015 (the existing dwelling will be demolished before the closing and the property will be delivered as a vacant lot)

All of the properties, located in wards 1,2,5,6,7 and 8, will be sold at the one-day auction to the highest bidder in order to redevelop them into habitable residences.

Only the following bidders are allowed to join in the auction:

  • homeowners who intend to make the property a primary residence
  • non-profits
  • DC Certified Business Entities

Profit corporations are not eligible to join.

New Apartments At Georgia Avenue Soon To Begin Construction

May 27, 2010 by  

A year after Neighborhood Development Company (NDC) and non-profit Mi Casa Inc. obtained zoning approval to build a new mixed-use development, the Heights at Georgia Avenue will soon begin construction this summer.

The Heights is a mixed-use residential and retail development located in the Petworth neighborhood within walking distance to Howard University and the Georgia Avenue Metro station.

The apartment offers 10,000 square feet of retail on the ground and 69 rental units on the next five stories. Half of the residential units are made available at 60% to 80% AMI. An underground parking garage is also available.

The project will replace surface parking lots and older commercial buildings, located just a few blocks near the planned development at Park Morton.

Developers are working with Grimm + Parker Architects on the design that will maximize usable space allowed by the Planned Unit Development while maintaining the existing neighborhood character. The project also affords homeowners an eco-friendly lifestyle with its green roof consisting of solar panels that power some of the common area lighting.

NDC is a local real estate development company while Mi Casa is a local organization that provides affordable housing in the district.

photo by Grimm + Parker Architects

DC Area Home Prices Increase, Signs Of Housing Stability According To CoreLogic

May 20, 2010 by  

CoreLogic, a real estate research firm, has recently released data showing home prices increase in the DC Metro area from a year ago. National home prices, including distressed sales, were up by 1.7 percent in March 2010 compared to March last year.

Chief economist for CoreLogic, Mark Fleming, explains in a press release:

“March’s year-over-year increase in the HPI shows that the housing market is continuing to exhibit signs of stability.”

“The differences between trends, including and excluding distressed sales, indicate the strong influence of distressed activity remains, but the surge in home sales in March is giving the market a boost this spring. As the influence of the tail end of the tax credit and spring buying season fade, price growth will fade with it as we go into summer,” he added.

To know more about the report, you can read the entire press release dated May 19, 2010.

QR Codes – the future of Real Estate for Realtors

May 18, 2010 by  

So this afternoon my mother and I went to downtown Bethesda for dinner on the way home from work.  We were supposed to eat a Sweet Green but in the end decided on Redwood (who offer an incredible hamburger).  While thats not important the reason for my post was that something unique caught my eye on the back of an employee’s shirt walking out of SG.  Its something my friend @lafauce has been talking about for a while and really motivating me to adopt in our pursuit of technological adoption.  QR Codes.

According to SearchEngineLand.com “They come to us from Japan where they are very common. QR is short for Quick Response (they can be read quickly by a cell phone). They are used to take a piece of information from a transitory media and put it in to your cell phone. You may soon see QR Codes in a magazine advert, on a billboard, a web page or even on someone’s t-shirt. Once it is in your cell phone, it may give you details about that business (allowing users to search for nearby locations), or details about the person wearing the t-shirt, show you a URL which you can click to see a trailer for a movie, or it may give you a coupon which you can use in a local outlet.”

What intrigues me most is their application in real estate on listings, real estate signs in the street, open house announcements, photos of the interior of a home, etc.  Its really intriguing technology that I hope to adopt as rapidly as possible and recommend other Realtors out there do as well.

For a QR-Code Generator I recommend http://qrcode.kaywa.com/.

EYA’s Luxury Town Home Community To Begin Sales This Week

May 10, 2010 by  

EYA’s new town home community in DC, Chancellor’s Row, will begin sales this week, particularly the first phase of its townhouse development in Brookland.

EYA bought 10 acres of property from St. Paul’s College and developed an environment-friendly and energy-efficient project in accordance with the standards set by the U.S. Green Building Council.

Chancellor’s Row, a 237 single-family units situated near the Trinity and Catholic campuses along 5th and 6th Streets, NE, will feature four-level town homes, which will be about 14 to 18 foot wide and will sell between $450,000 and $550,000.00

The project, a classic DC row house with rich architectural details, will offer several open floor plans designed for modern lifestyles, with kitchens furnished with granite countertops and energy-saving appliances. Rooftop terraces and private garage parking are also part of the project amenities.

EYA is set to purchase the second phase from the Paulists in no more than three years from now, which s based on the assumption of three sales each month. The purchase can take place sooner depending on sales.

Chancellor’s Row is just within walking distance to several shops, restaurants, and other amenities of Trinity University and Catholic University. The property is less than 10-minute walk from the Brookland Metro, part of the agreement between the Office of Planning and the community.

EYA is considered “America’s Best Builder” in 2009 according to BUILDER Magazine. Starting at $469,000, the project is said to be the most affordable in DC.

EastBanc To Turn Former Fillmore School Into Luxury Condos

May 9, 2010 by  

The Corcoran College of Art and Design announced in a press release EastBanc as the winning bidder on the old Fillmore School building.

EastBanc had long had their eyes on the building, which is located on 1801 35th Street, NW, at the Georgetown/Burleith border.

The company had over 60 buildings in the area for the past two decades. It won the bid for the site, outplaying more than eight other firms competing for the project. EastBanc plans to turn the building into luxury condominiums and as well as build new townhouses along 34th Street on the area where the 100-car parking lot is situated.

The Corcoran bought the old building from the district government in 1997 for $1.5 million but because of expansions, the school has to look for a wider space elsewhere in the city.

“Fillmore offers approximately 26,000 square feet, but we are at a point where we need a room to grow – and plant to release an RFP for a 45,000 square foot space to lease,” said Fred Bollerer, Corcoran’s Chief Operating Officer. “A decision will be made soon with more than enough time to facilitate a move.”

The Corcoran’s main campus is at the Corcoran’s downtown location at New York Avenue and Seventeenth Street NW. Its second campus will be relocated by the summer of 2011.

Silver Spring Civic Building Nears Completion

May 4, 2010 by  

At the heart of Downtown Silver Spring, the 42,000-square-foot and $22-million-worth project, Silver Spring Civic Building, will soon open to feature an art gallery, 800-person auditorium with a dance floor, classrooms and meeting rooms available for community use, and offices.

The great hall, located between Ellsworth Drive and Fenton Street, will also host weeding receptions. The art gallery, which is to be operated by the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County, is on one side of the main lobby. On the other side is a high-ceilinged atrium with a glass wall.

Work on the ice rink, which will also serve as an ampitheatre for concerts and other performances in the warmer months, is still in progress.

The second floor will house classrooms and government officers. A suite of offices set aside for the Silver Spring Regional Services Center although other county agencies will have their space as well. The entire basement has been turned over to Round House Theatre in exchange of $1 a year in rent, which is part of an agreement made several years ago.

photo by: thecourtyard

Takoma Overlook Still Converting To Condos

April 27, 2010 by  

DC-based Tenacity Group is still converting rental apartments to condos in its massive Takoma Overlook apartment complex, formerly known as Hampshire Towers.
Tenacity Group bought Hampshire Towers in mid-2006 for $15.3 million and, after major renovations, put up units in one tower for sale as condos while units in the other tower remained rental.

Forty-one our of 273 units in the new condo tower were purchased at a discounted price. Fifty percent of the 94 units in the North Wing was already sold. The group is now working on both the South and West Wings to convert more units. The West Wing’s 44 units is underway, with 8 units sold while the South Wing’s 94 units will begin delivering by the end of this year.

Takoma Overlook, an FHA-approved project, is expected to be completed as early as December. One-bedroom units with prices starting from $124,500 will be delivered first due to demand; three-bedrooms will be delivered last. Two-bedroom units are priced from $229,500. Sales has already started in October of 2007.

Arlington County Begins Construction Of The Pentagon City Park

April 22, 2010 by  

The Pentagon City Park, a 46-acre Park which had long served as an industrial site including a brick factory and staging area for construction of the Pentagon, is expected to be replaced with a building next summer.

The Arlington County began its plan of replacing the industrial site in 2001. The plan calls for trails for pedestrians and bikers, fill-size grass fields, an esplanade with public event area, and a building which will house a 50-meter pool and exercise rooms.

The County describes the project as “a distinctive showplace of environmentally sound development featuring attractive public green spaces, high-quality outdoor recreation facilities and environmentally responsible structures.” A new walkway is included in the plan to accommodate “strolling, bicycling, train spotting, plane watching and small festivals” according to a county statement.

Arlington voters have already approved a $50-million construction budget back in 2004 but with the additional planned phases, the project is expected to cost about $90 million. The county will pick up the initial $28 million construction costs while Marymount University will provide a $2 million construction grant.

DCHFA’s DC Bond Is Back

April 22, 2010 by  

DC Bond is again made available through the DC Housing Finance Agency. The program offers an affordable, fixed rate mortgages to both individuals and families seeking their first home in the District, which means that those who have owned a home in DC in the last three years are disqualified. The loan is also intended for those seeking primary residence.

Interest rate for borrowers is set at 5.25% with zero points and is only available as an FHA loan or a Veterans Administration loan though financing without these options are still being considered.

The new DC Bond, which will largely benefit low-income borrowers, requires all loans be purchased by Ginnie Mae. It also requires prospective borrowers to make less than $57,500 and less than $65,700 for couples. For a family of four, total household earnings must be less than $82,200 to qualify for the bond. Maximum amount of loan is fixed at $417,000. Furthermore, applicants must have a minimum FICO score of 620 to be qualified.

Columbia Heights’ Historic Row Homes To Be Sold As Condominiums

April 15, 2010 by  

Urban Investment Partner, a subsidiary of Urban Investment Partners, starts to rehabilitate The Matheson, a large century-old row home at 1451 Harvard Street, NW in DC’s Columbia Heights neighborhood.

Renovations are expected to be completed by July and seven unique residential units will be sold as condominiums.

The Matheson will be completely renovated to accommodate sustainability and green design concepts. The building will feature new plumbing, electrical and HVAC systems. The condo units will also provide for new kitchens, baths, flooring, appliances and fixtures.

Equity Residential Acquires The Dumont

April 14, 2010 by  

Equity Residential has recently acquired 425 Mass, formerly known as The Dumont, for $167 million.

The luxury DC property is located in the Mount Vernon Triangle area, just a few blocks away from the Capitol. Judiciary Square, the Federal Triangle. K Street and Union Station.

This two 14-story residential towers at 401 and 425 Massachusetts Ave. NW were developed by New York-based Broadway Management Co. but units have sat empty since its completion. The developer’s lender, New York-based PB Capitol Corp., filed a notice of foreclosure on the property back in 2008.

Completed in 2009, the property boasts of its high quality unit finishes and amenities.

” We are very pleased to add a brand new asset to our portfolio without construction risk and at a price well below replacement cost,” said David J. Neithercut, Equity Residential’s President and CEO. “This acquisition is a continuation of our strategy to acquire high-quality assets in core markets and is yet another example of the complex transactions that we are able to efficiently execute to create long term value for our shareholders.”

Equity residential owns and operates 51 properties which consists of 15, 976 DC apartments and 3 other properties made up of 1,062 DC units.

DC Apartment Rents On The Rise

April 7, 2010 by  

Reports from research firm Reis, Inc. revealed the rise in apartment rents during first quarter. DC had the second highest rent increase over the past 12 months, second to Colorado Springs.

An article from the Wall Street Journal noted that the apartment vacancy rate at the national level stayed flat at 8%, the highest since the firm started its tally in 1980.

More from the Journal:

“We clearly hit an inflection point in all of our markets in January and February,” said Jeffrey Friedman, chief executive of Associated Estates Realty Corp., which owns and operates 12,000 units in the eastern U.S.
Renters are also staying put longer: the average renter now stays for 19 months, up from an average of 14 months, said Mr. Friedman, and despite low mortgage rates and greater home affordability, fewer renters are leaving to buy homes.

“This is the first time in many, many years that it feels like even people who could afford to buy are making the investment decision not to,” Mr. Friedman said.

Modified Home Properties’ Project To Appear Before County Planning Board

April 7, 2010 by  

Ripley Street North, Home Properties’ mixed-use development formerly known as Kettler’s Midtown Silver Spring when it received county approval, will appear before the Montgomery County Planning Board this week.

Designer Shalom Baranes Architects submitted new plans for the modified Silver Spring residential project in January.

What used to be a single, mixed-building plan will now become two buildings in the Ripley District. The new plan will also increase the number of residential units from 314 to 385, which will be divided between two buildings, and as well as the amount of retail space, fro, 5,380 to 5,541 approved maximum density.

The planning board has already approved an increase in the maximum building height to 200 feet back in 2006.

Revival of the Bromptons at Cherrydale

April 1, 2010 by  

The Bromptons, a half-finished building located at 3800 Lee Highway, will no longer be an eyesore in the Arlington neighborhood. This 22-unit, mixed-use townhouse condo is making a comeback after a long halt.

The Arlington County was forced to order the Ed Peete Company to stop the construction due to multiple structural violations back in 2005. It issued a stop work order in 2006 and eventually a demolition order in 2007.

The County was about to file suit to confiscate and sell the property until Ed Peete Company reached an agreement with the Arlington County to post a $250,000 escrow account.

Steve MacIsaac, Arlington County Attorney, said there were several problems with the original construction. This made R15 LLC, formerly known as Ed Peete Company, pushed for modifications to ensure a code-friendly building. The exterior is nearing its completion while interior work is set to start by April.

Deadlines are especially significant for the company since, as stipulated in the agreement, the County had the right to demolish the whole building if these were not met.

The Bromptons is a wood-framed, 22-unit condominium with four commercial spaces on the ground floor. It’s located next door to the fire station.

2650 15th St NW Sells both Assembled and Individually

March 31, 2010 by  

This morning I came across an odd circumstance.  A brand new four unit building in Columbia Heights just came on the market at $1.65 million when the developer is also selling each of the condos individually for a gross sales price of $1.9 million.  While this isn’t an unheard of circumstance, its a bit odd to see both offerings together in less than a 30 day period.  Any ideas?

The building

2650 Listing Here

The listings

Unit 1

Unit 4

Major Development Coming to H Street

March 31, 2010 by  


The local advisory neighborhood commission has recently approved the redevelopment of a two-bloc strip mall in the H Street Corridor, a significant move for the completion of the project. This also signals the start of new developments in the area.

The project, known as H Street Connection, will feature 346 to 423 apartments and over 50,000 square feet of retail covering the two blocks along H Street between 8th and 10th Streets NE. It will replace a one-story strip mall built in 1987.

Developed by Parcel Seven Associates and designed by architects Torti Gallas, the project is now on its way to get a zoning hearing with the city in the coming months. The earliest groundbreaking is expected to occur in 2012.

Other developments in H Street are under way including Washington Real Estate Partners Project, a mixed-use project with 234-unit residential space, 500 parking spaces and ground-floor retail. Another mixed-use project in the area, Capitol Place, will feature over 400,000 square feet of retail, 300 condos, and 380 parking spaces. This Dreyfus Development project will reach several stories high at 2nd and H Streets but will scale back to row house heights as it approaches 3rd Street to the east and G Street to the south.

DC Home Prices Up by 1.84% for 2010-2011

March 24, 2010 by  

First American Core Logic recently released data suggesting that home prices in DC-Arlington-Alexandria, including foreclosures and short sales, would increase by 1.84% for 2010 and 2011.

A 35.8% increase in the number of homes for DC, Maryland, (from 1,573 to 2,136 homes in February 2010) was not as strong as the 2007 sales. Sales of lower home prices also pulled last year’s sales from $287,000 to $270,000 this year.

While incentives work for homebuyers, with the perfect buying conditions coming from federal tax credit for buyers, low interest rates and low prices, low inventory of homes will be the single most important factor to drive prices up.

Condo sales in Northern Virginia looks more promising for sellers though. Sales were up by 12% and home prices increased by 20% since last year, from $267,500 to $320,660.

First Residential Units In North Bethesda Market Up For Grabs By Summer

March 24, 2010 by  

North Bethesda Market’s first rental apartment units are expected to sell out by summer of this year. About 397 units of the 24-story building are scheduled for delivery and will become available for lease by late spring although JBG Companies has not finalized the rates yet.

North Bethesda Market is a mixed-use development located along Rockville Pike, or what has become known as the White Flint Triangle.

Apart from its residential units, North Bethesda Market is also known for its 220,000 square feet of retail space, which includes restaurants, boutiques, and high-end stores. Prominent tenants like Whole Foods Market and L.A. Fitness are also located here.

Bethesda is the county’s healthiest submarket. Last year,only 9 percent of resales were foreclosures or short sales compared with 43 percent in other counties. Current new condo inventory in the county is at 608 units.

Newest Capitol Hill Condos Now Open For Sales

March 22, 2010 by  

The latest addition to Capitol Hill condos, 15 East, started to open sales on Saturday. 15 East is an 8-unit condominium located on the border of Capitol Hill’s historic district, close to the Potomac Avenue Metro and new Harris Teeter supermarket.

The 4-story building only has 2 units per floor, which are about 750 to 1000 s.f. each. One-bedroom units costs $289,900 and two bedrooms are priced at $379,000. One-bedroom units have outdoor spaces while two-bedroom units feature a corner living room with a wall of glass facing south and west. Occupants can also purchase parking for $25,000.

All units feature handscrapped wood floors, granite counter tops, open floor plan European style flat front cabinets, and Italian tiles in the baths.

A project by Macy Development, 15 East is expected to be ready for occupancy by mid April. The construction began in 2007 although long construction during financial drought delayed sales until the project was revived earlier this year. Macy also developed the Axis Condominium across the street.

Urban Matters, Mission First and Mt. Lebanon to Redevelop M.M. Washington

March 17, 2010 by  

Mayor Adrian Fenty has announced just this week the winning group to redevelop M.M. Washington Career High School and turn it into about 80 units of affordable housing for senior citizens: Urban Matters, Mission First Development, Mt. Lebanon Community Development Corporation and Square 134 Architects.

Urban Matters was also part of a team chosen by Mayor Fenty in September 2009 to  build 56 affordable housing units at Dix Street and Eastern Avenue NE. The council approved a land deal for Urban Matters along with its partners, Denning Development and Beulah Community Improvement, in October.

Pastor Edmunds of Mt. Lebanon Baptist Church said the project will require between $6 and $8 million in low-income housing tax credits. Edmunds and the development team estimate a mid-2001 ground breaking and a late 2012 completion date. They expect to start construction later this year.

The group will also work closely with the Washington Interfaith Network (WIN), an association of local churches. Mayor Fenty describes WIN as a “full-fledged community partner and developer.”

In addition to housing for seniors, the plan also calls for a 15,000 square feet of community space. In a press release on Monday, Mayor Fenty said the project is “a great example of how we are using our excess government-owned properties back into productive use and meeting the needs of our seniors at the same time.”

The Cultural Development Corporation (CuDC) also submitted a proposal, which would have brought a mixed-use office and artists’ studios to the neighborhood, but apparently lost the bid.

Anne Corbett, Executive Director for CuDC, was skeptical about a proposal which requires so much in financing that is unavailable. Corbett worries that this plan will require a significant amount of public money. She said the arts project required only an initial seed contribution from the government but won’t need an “ongoing public subsidy.”

photo credit: WILL1955

EastBank to Develop 3 West End Properties

March 16, 2010 by  

City officials announced last week that East Banc won its bid to redevelop three underused properties, in the corner of 24th and L Streets NW, in the West End.

EastBanc was already given rights back in 2007 but the project was put on hold due to several protests.  Now that the project is back on track, EastBanc is set to develop three properties located in the West End corner including the West End library, fire station, and special operations police.

The current site of the library will exhibit a 20,765 square feet ground floor library. The 9-story residence above will have about 150 residential units. There’s also 10,000 square feet of retail and 235 parking spaces available for residents.

Ten Arquitectos will design the project, LeMay Erickson Wilcox Architects will be the architects for the fire station and WDG Architecture will be the architect of record.

Eastbanc’s partners on the project include Warrenton Group, Dantes Partners, TEN Architectos, and WDG Architecture. Mayor Fenty said that he expects groundbreaking for the project “at the end of 2012, at the very latest.”

photo credit: WILL1955

West End Marriott Courtyard Hotel: The Future Still Looks Uncertain

March 10, 2010 by  

The Marriott Courtyard Hotel could be replacing a 420-car parking garage in George Washington/West End. But that’s not going to happen so soon. The plan was originally approved in 2006 but has since faced opposition from an ANC chair and a civic organization.

The ANC and other Foggy Bottom organizations opposed the development expressed concerns about increased traffic and the possibility of blocked streets during constructions. An ANC Chair and active member of a civic organization, Dorothy Miller, filed a suit in the D.C. Court of Appeals against the Board of Zoning Adjustment’s approval of the plan.

Now two years after the court sided with BZA, certain efforts made by WDG Architecture and Allstate Hotel Partnership are suggesting that construction may begin in the near future. The group is deciding on a general contractor but it looks like Marriott’s future is still uncertain. Architect Nelson, project architect/manager at WDG Architecture said the timeline will depend on the financing. “It might happen in the next four months, it might happen in the next three years,” Lobo said.

Should the group push the project through, expect for a “very urban project, unlike other Courtyards.” Lobo said the building has a “contemporary design” and “fits in with the GW area.”

photo credit: arellis49

LeDroit Park’s New Residential Project

March 9, 2010 by  

Ground Level Plan

Fifty out of the original 64 James-McGill-designed Victorian homes in Ledroit Park are still in the neighborhood- but one of them is to get renovated.

Community Three Development is pushing for renovation proposals on the main house and carriage house at 1922 3rd Street NW. There will also be a new, small residential development at the southern edge of the property. The proposal calls for a 14,000 gross square feet of space, a 14 residential units and four garage spaces- which is permitted by zoning. Of the 14 proposed residential units, one will be set aside for affordable housing.

Second Level Plan

A document submitted by Community Three Development to the District of Columbia Historic Preservation Review Board says that the design for the project

“creates an addition to the existing main building that is smaller in scale and secondary to the main building, allowing the main structure to continue to read as the dominant form on the site. This addition terminates in a “carriage house court,” designed to celebrate the existing carriage house, while maintaining the historic structure’s existing view corridor from U Street. A new unsubdivided townhouse lot and structure is created to terminate the row of townhouses directly to the south of the site. The result of these interventions preserves and enhances the character and urban form associated with the main structure and corresponding carriage house.”

Third Level Plan

This renovation is nothing new. Some historic homes in the neighborhood have been renovated in the past. Just a few years ago, a historic LeDroit property, the Italianate-styled Juniper, underwent renovations which many considered as an exquisite achievement.

photo credit: Community Three Development

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