Modern Bay-Window Beauty in Bloomingdale

Under contract with multiple offers in 6 days!

1731 1st Street NW #2, Washington, DC 20001

Offered at $735,000

Beautiful Bayfront in Bloomingdale! After brunch at Big Bear Cafe or dinner and drinks at The Red Hen, wow your friends with the gorgeous vistas from the private 13’x 14′ roofdeck. When you tire of the stunning views of this historic neighborhood’s turrets, come inside to enjoy the generous proportions of your modern, top-floor 2 bedroom, 2 bath condo.

The multiple dining areas, sleek European kitchen, and bay-front living room are perfect for a crowd, and the owner’s suite is an ideal respite at the end of the day – big enough for a king sized bed, an office AND a reading nook with a view. With 2 full baths, an additional balcony, generous storage and off-street parking, what more could you want? Just 0.6 miles to the metro, and pet and investor friendly.

Come, enjoy and rest easy – you’re home!

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RFK Future Development Study to Go to Brailsford and Dunlavey

DC United RFKEvents D.C. will award a contract to study the possible future development of the Robert F. Kennedy (RFK) Memorial Stadium (including its parking lots) and the non‐military portions of the D.C. Armory to Brailsford & Dunlavey, The Washington Business Journal reports.

Events D.C. first issued a request for expressions of interest (RFEI) in November of last year and responses were due in January. Seven teams responded.

The RFEI sought respondents to study the possible redevelopment of/uses for the RFK campus and to possibly execute those development plans.

Events D.C. has not officially announced the selection of Brailsford & Dunlavey, but the business journal confirmed the selection with spokeswoman Teri Washington.

The selected company has worked with local universities like George Washington University, Howard University, Georgetown University, Catholic University of America with projects including athletic facilities analyses, strategic development plans, developer selection assistance and campus, athletic and recreation master plans.

“All of the seven respondents understood how important it was for us to ensure that we have community input” said Eric Moses, managing director of Events DC’s Sports and Entertainment Division, at a community meeting in April.

 

The post RFK Future Development Study to Go to Brailsford and Dunlavey appeared first on District Source.

CAS Riegler and MidAtlantic Realty Partners to Develop Brookland Metro Sites

A vision for the Brookland-CUA Metrorail Station sites.

A vision for the Brookland-CUA Metrorail Station sites.

Metro awarded the development rights for two sites at the Brookland-CUA Metrorail Station to a joint venture comprised of MidAtlantic Realty Partners (MRP) and CAS Riegler Companies, the agency announced Monday. The Brookland site is the second of five such sites for which the agency sought joint development responses.

MRP and CAS Riegler beat out proposals from Donatelli Development, A&R / Urban Atlantic, and Four Points to redevelop the Brookland site and in June the team was also selected for Metro’s Navy Yard Chiller site.

The proposed Brookland project will bring 280 residential units, 9,000 square feet of ground-floor retail and a new Metro kiss-and-ride facility to two sites near the Brookland Metro. The north site would have about 150 units and the south site would bring 130 units, according to a community proposal presentation from May.

Pending approval by Metro’s Board of Directors and the District’s various regulatory agencies, construction could begin in 2016, according to a press release from Metro.

When Metro first announced its joint development solicitation in November, neighborhood groups started a petition to save the Brookland Green, located just east of the existing kiss and ride, from redevelopment.

Metro assures area residents the Brookland Green will not be impacted by the development and will instead become a public park owned and managed by the District government.

“It’s heartening that the voice of the community was heard and that green park space is going to be preserved. This new project will continue the transformation of Brookland into a thriving and modern destination neighborhood,” says Laura Bowman Pimentel*, a local Realtor and resident of the nearby neighborhood of Woodridge.

Metro's parcels near the Brookland-CUA Metrorail Station.

Metro’s parcels near the Brookland-CUA Metrorail Station.

*Editor’s Note:  Laura Bowman Pimentel is a Realtor at  Lindsay Reishman Real Estate, which is the sponsor of District Source. Here’s how that works.

The post CAS Riegler and MidAtlantic Realty Partners to Develop Brookland Metro Sites appeared first on District Source.

H.R. 57 Eyes New Home Near Howard Theater

625 T St. NW is a District-owned lot that could become H.R. 57's new location. Photo courtesy of Peter Courtney.

625 T St. NW is a District-owned lot that could become H.R. 57′s new location. Photo courtesy of Peter Courtney.

Venerable D.C. jazz institution H.R. 57 wants the bring the music a little closer to its roots as owner Tony Puesan closes his H Street location and plans to bid on a District-owned parking lot across from the Howard Theater at 625 T St. NW, according to an exclusive interview between Puesan and CapitalBop.

“We are in the midst of negotiating for a spot that we would consider historic—next to the Duke Ellington statue, right across from the Howard Theatre,” Puesan told CapitalBop.

The District purchased the lot in 2012 for $775,000 with plans to solicit bids for development. In 2014 the land was assessed at $567,680.
Though Mayor Vincent Gray issued an executive order in 2012 to solicit offer for development, the site did not make the list of properties up for solicitation until FY 2014.  The Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development (DMPED) has not yet issued that solicitation.

DMPED spokeswoman Chandra Washington told Capitol Bop her agency should issue a request for proposals for the 2,200 square-foot lot just south of Florida Avenue, NW in the “near future,” but noted the process would be a competitive one, meaning there’s no guarantee Puesan will be the winning proposal.

DMPED records from 2013 indicate the District would consider selling or leasing the lot, “site to be conveyed to selected development team by ground lease or fee simple transfer.”

For his part Puesan is not worried about a little bit of competition. “We have our bid ready to go,” he said.

Click here to read the full report by CapitalBop.

The post H.R. 57 Eyes New Home Near Howard Theater appeared first on District Source.

Online Alcohol Orders Now Legal in D.C.

DSC_3795 (700x466)Less than two months after the District government told online alcohol vendorUltra, to cease and desist operations, the The Alcoholic Beverage Control Board (ABC) has paved the way for legal sales via unlicensed websites and smartphone applications.

The new guidelines limit companies to connecting users to District alcohol retailers and promoting retailers’ products. They cannot take orders for beverages, store their own supplies for sale to consumers or collecting any money or fees for the sale of alcohol.

So companies can act as middlemen between licensed liquor stores and customers, but can’t stockpile booze to sell via app without a license from the District.

“The Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration (ABRA) recently reviewed several technology businesses that partner with liquor-licensed retailers to provide alcohol order and delivery services,” according to a press release.

ABRA advised two such companies, Drizly and Klink there business models were on the right side of the law in D.C. The release did not mention Ultra, but company founder Aniket Shah tells DCist “they’ll be back in business in a few days.”

Want to understand the new guidelines? Check our ABRA’s quick guide.

Next time you wonder what your tax dollars are paying for again, remember your civil servants made sure you could order extra beer to your party without having to leave on a beer run.

The post Online Alcohol Orders Now Legal in D.C. appeared first on District Source.

The Reishman Report – July 2014: Median Prices Up, Inventory Down

It’s summer in Washington. With most politicians back in their home districts or on vacation, not much legislative business is getting done, but the real estate business remained quite busy in July, according to the latest data from RBI.

Real estate inventory here in D.C. is down overall from last month (7.1 percent) – an expected summer slowdown, but it’s still up 6.4 percent over July 2013. Active listings of attached properties are up slightly in Washington, driven primarily by non-condo townhomes and rowhomes.

Days on market has increased just slightly from June to July — from 10 days to 15 days for detached homes, and from 9 days to 11 days for attached properties. That’s not an unexpected slowdown for this time of year, and something we routinely see between June and July. However, the average time on market is half of what it was back in 2012, so we continue to look at a healthy market, particularly compared to recent history.

Median sold price, another metric we follow closely, was at $530,000 in July – that’s up from last month and up from a year ago. In July 2013, the median sold price was $520,000 and in July 2012, the median sold price was just $457,000.

For sellers, this is overall good news. The market is doing well, and an increasing number of people rightly believe they can get a good profit on their properties. For buyers, it means they still need to be ready to move quickly on properties.

Next month’s Reishman Report may not be quite as rosy: August is traditionally a month when available inventory and median prices both decrease, and days on market increase. We’ll see a rebound in September in all of those areas – years of experience and data back this up.

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Stanton-EastBanc Hine Development Can Move Forward Following Favorable Court Ruling

Hine project site in Eastern Market. Image courtesy of Stanton-EastBanc.

Hine project site in Eastern Market. Image courtesy of Stanton-EastBanc.

The proposed redevelopment of the Hine School site in Eastern Market can now begin following a ruling by the D.C Court of Appeals Thursday in favor of the the development team, Stanton-EastBanc. The project, which received approval from the Zoning Commission in October 2012 and was reaffirmed in March 2013, has been on hiatus pending the ruling on an appeal by three neighbors supported by two community organizations who opposed the mixed-use proposal.

Stanton-EastBanc proposes a $150 million development with office space, retail and more than 130 units of housing, to include as many as 46 affordable units. The team was chosen through a competitive bid process for redeveloping the site initiated by the District government in 2008.

Ground floor retail and office spaces would line Pennsylvania Avenue SE across from the Eastern Market Metro Plaza as well as 7th Street, SE leading to the historic Eastern Market building. A residential building would sit on 8th Street, facing existing townhomes and a second residential building built to the north of a newly-reconnected C Street, SE will be entirely affordable housing. The northern building will sit on the site currently occupied by the temporary Fragers Hardware garden shop.

The requested height and massing of the new project required zoning map amendments from the Zoning Commission to allow a development much taller than the mostly two- and three-story homes in the immediate neighborhood. The team requested the site be redefined as medium density, which generally allows a planned unit development project to build up to 90 feet. However,  the developers also requested approval for a portion of the project to rise to 94.5 feet for mechanical equipment like the elevator. This became the biggest issue for nearby residents and was among the primary concerns raised during both the Zoning Commission process and the ultimate appeal to the court.

In their appeal, the residents in opposition argued the Zoning Commission did not sufficiently consider the impact the tall, dense project would have on nearby homes. The court, however, did not agree.

“Although the record contains many objections to the project’s size, it is also replete
with evidence upon which the Zoning Commission based its conclusion to the
contrary. We therefore reject petitioners’ claim,” the order reads.

Alex Golding, Vice President at Stanton Development, said the decision’s significance cannot be understated.

“We’ve been waiting 11 months,” said Golding about the appeal decision. “We have everything ready and can now move forward.”

The team already has permit documents drawn up and will need to now secure financing and file permit requests so they can begin construction.

Work on remediation of the site and possibly demolition of the old school building could begin as soon as this fall.

Though the development team has been trying to secure leases for the office space, now that they can offer firmer dates for completion, which will make it easier to lock-in leases.

Golding estimates the soonest the 27-month-long project could deliver would be early 2017.

 

The post Stanton-EastBanc Hine Development Can Move Forward Following Favorable Court Ruling appeared first on District Source.

Mt. Vernon Mural Saved, Condo Construction Coming Soon

The mural conservator hard at work. Photo courtesy of the Jewish Historical Society of Greater Washington.

The mural conservator hard at work. Photo courtesy of the Jewish Historical Society of Greater Washington.

Now that an historic mural on the interior of a former synagogue in Mt. Vernon is being safely removed for preservation, the new six-unit condo planned for the site, 415 M St. NW and its adjoining lot, will be able to start construction, pending permits.

A professional conservation team has spent much of the week painstakingly removing the last remnant of Shomrei Shabbos–a small synagogue that probably consisted of a handful of eastern European Jewish families. The mural–painted some 90 years ago on an interior wall–will be relocated to theJewish Historical Society of Greater Washington (JHSGW), which raised the necessary $20,000 for the restoration project.

The mural’s rescue was also made possible by the current owners of 415 M St. NW,  BlackRock Holdings, Inc., which bought the historic home in 2013.

“On the one hand we knew that a proper restoration of the nearly 160 year old building would necessitate a full gut of the existing structure.  On the other hand we knew such drastic renovation and repair would destroy this beautiful and historic mural of which we were now de-facto custodians.  None of us wanted to be a party to that kind of destruction,” said Patrick Moran, managing partner of BlackRock Holdings, in a previous interview with District Source.

With a little help from the D.C. Historic Preservation Office (HPO), the developers were able to connect with JHSGW to discuss how to save the mural without standing in the way of the project.

BlackRock was in the midst of historic review and permitting when the fundraising campaign began, putting the campaign for the mural on a bit of a time squeeze.  But JHSGW was able to raise its funds before BlackRock received its building permit–which are still pending approval with various District agencies according to online permit records.

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Douglas Development Topping Out on 14th Street

Douglas Development's  2221 14th St. NW. Photo Courtesy of Shane Reeder.

Douglas Development’s 2221 14th St. NW. Photo Courtesy of  local realtor Shane Reeder.

Douglas Development is topping out on its six-story residential project at 2221 14th St. NW (corner of Florida Avenue and 14th Street, NW), reaching the roof top level this week after first beginning construction just over a year ago in April 2013.

The project will bring 30 new luxury apartments and 2,700 square feet of ground floor retail  to the site of a former used car lot just north of U Street.  The building will offer 10 spaces of below-grade parking and amenities like balconies for several units as well as two roof top terraces.

“We are excited to contribute to neighborhoods with enormous potential or certain needs, such as more luxury apartment buildings near the U Street corridor,” said Senior Vice President of Douglas Development, Norman Jemal, in a press release about the project last year.

The project is across Florida Avenue from View 14, which also offers luxury apartments. 

The ground floor retail could accommodate a restaurant, based on marketing materials Douglas Development has online–to include possible sidewalk seating for 30.

“I would love to see a restaurant there,” says Shane Reeder, a nearby resident and local realtor*.

Reeder says he’s glad the project has ground floor retail because it will add vibrancy to the corner and a restaurant tenant would help continue the restaurant trend of 14th Street south of U Street.

Pre-leasing has not yet begun.

*Editor’s Note: Shane Reeder is a Realtor at  Lindsay Reishman Real Estate, which is the sponsor of District Source. Here’s how that works. 

The post Douglas Development Topping Out on 14th Street appeared first on District Source.

Buyer Tips for Choosing a Title Company and a Lender

Choosing a title company and a lender are big steps in your home purchase process. For most people, it all comes down to money.  But here are a few things (besides cost) to take into consideration when selecting a title company or a lender for your new home purchase.

Did you get a referral?

Consider looking into the title company or lender that your real estate agent recommends.  Often, agents will work frequently with the same lenders and title companies, and have laid all the groundwork for a great working relationship for you.  Also, it helps for the lender and title company to not only have a good relationship with the agent, but for them to have a good relationship with each other.  Every company is different, and working with a new company for the first time can be tricky for all parties involved.

This is not to say that you have to choose someone your agent likes, it just helps smooth out the process when there are existing business relationships.  If you choose to work with someone that your agent has never worked with, your agent still will work diligently to make the process as smooth as possible.

You may also want to consider the experiences of friends and family when selecting a title company or lender.  Let people share their experiences with you so you can be even more prepared to determine who to trust.  And, of course it always helps to look for online reviews of the companies you’re considering!

How good is the customer service?

Good customer service is so important!  Do the companies you’re working with have knowledgeable staff members readily available to speak to you?  If you leave a voice mail, do they return your call in a timely manner?  Are their email responses prompt?  Do they keep you informed throughout the process?  When you’re making one of the biggest purchases of your life, things go so much better when you are working with people who have good customer service.  Obviously you won’t know how good the customer service will be throughout the process until you’re committed and going through it with them, but these are some items you can keep an eye out for when you make your initial contact.

Everyone is different, but I have worked with many clients who wish they were spared the headache of working with a company that had poor customer service.  When you’re shopping around, make note of how long it takes for them to return your call or email.  Also, pay attention to the content of the response.  Did they answer all of your questions?  Do they seem knowledgeable?  Did they put an effort into the response, or did it seem rushed or haphazardly put together?  There’s no guaranteeing that they won’t have good customer service at the beginning and then drop off the map, but first impressions can be a good indicator.

Do the title company and lender have an existing relationship?

While this shouldn’t make or break your real estate experience, it does help if the title company and lender are familiar with each other.  Having previously worked in the title insurance industry, I can attest to how much easier it is for the title company to have worked with the lender before.  There are so many conditions and requirements for each loan, and every lender is different.  When the title company is familiar with the lender’s needs, they tend to be able to provide those items more quickly than when they’re working with a new lender that has a different set of requirements. Aside from being able to provide efficiency in producing the title documents, a prior relationship between the two companies can also aid in communication efforts.

I recently heard of a deal where the title company never sent any of the necessary documentation to the lender because they never got a formal request.  The title company knew there was a lender and the contact information was provided at the very beginning, but they waited for the lender to reach out to them. Each side knew what needed to happen, but there wasn’t any communication between them because they weren’t familiar with each other’s process. No one knew they hadn’t communicated until two days prior to closing.

It all worked out in the end and the closing proceeded on time, but this was a strange scenario that shouldn’t have happened. This is not a common situation, but it’s an example of how helpful it can be when the title company and lender are familiar with each other.

Does the title company or lender have any specialized experience you may need?

If you have any special circumstances that need to be handled with care, be sure to ask the lender or title company up front if they have experience with that scenario. Examples could be a state government loan program, such as HPAP in D.C., or purchasing the property in the name of a trust.  Situations like these do require some previous knowledge on the loan and title end, so you’ll want to make sure that the company you choose is aware of all the necessary requirements.

Of course cost is highly important, but just keep in mind what it will cost you in time and patience if you select an unreliable lender or title company.  Since there are so many variables that go into your home purchase, you want to make sure that all of the parties involved are doing everything they can to keep it running smoothly for you and get you to settlement on time.

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