Friday, January 25, 2008

Weekend Roundup

Deposed Monarch

It looks like the Monarch is taking a page out of the Madison project's book and morphing into rental apartments. Click here to read the story on DC real estate blog DCMud, who dubbed the new units "condopartments."

Some Disenchanted Evening

The final Braddock Road Metro community meeting last night concluded on an unexpected down note, as many Parker-Gray residents started to grasp just how much density and height the City is prepared to shove into the area — particularly on the Metro lot itself — and how much greater this is than what was proposed in the original draft plan. The Growler distinctly heard an FAR of 3.0 mentioned for the Metro development, which is the same FAR as the Meridian.

It now appears that the goal shared by the Cranky One and other members of the community to keep density at reasonable levels at Braddock has been subverted by the City and its consultants, who have used the lure of builder proffers and future tax revenue for streetscaping and open space to try to gain buy-in for big development.

Another wet blanket was thrown on the proceedings by respected ARHA Vice Chairman Carlyle "Connie" Ring, who stated that ARHA was at least "15 to 20" years away from redeveloping the Andrew Adkins project. Mr. Ring observed that the building still had years of useful life and that it was still paying its way -- unlike the troubled Glebe Park project in Arlandria which is the spur for the redevelopment of James Bland.

Has anyone noticed that ARHA and the City are back in the same standoff they were in back in late 2006 when Adkins was first suggested for redevelopment in tandem with Glebe Park? The City wanted great height and density on the Adkins site, while ARHA adamantly rejected the idea of managing a high-rise public housing project.

The BRT Pack

There was a flurry of news coverage for our hardy neighbors on Patrick and Henry Streets who recently appeared before City Council to protest the Ad Hoc Transportation Committee's proposal for bus rapid transit (BRT) on Route 1. The Examiner kicked off with a story which was followed up by WJLA and NewsChannel 8 (Channel 8 on local Comcast cable TV). Bravo, BRT pack!