Being a Down-and-Out Developer Surprisingly Fun and Liberating!
This morning's Washington Post features a front page article on District developers that have lost their "swagger." They meet in conference rooms, instead of pricey downtown restaurants. They drink cups of ice water, instead of scarfing down steaks at the Capitol Grille. Or they've dropped their businesses all together! Fired their staffs! Closed up their offices. It's too bad, it's kind of sad—except, well, that it's not. The Post article notes that nearly all these developers saved enough money to do whatever they want now. A few examples:
- What happened: Developer Scott Pannick built Logan Circle's Metropole, which has since been seized by his lender. Moving on: Pannick plays with his three-year-old daughter (Ugh, how pitiable!), and plans a six month move to Argentina "to contemplate his future, the options of which include writing a novel."
- What happened: Former co-owner of Monument Realty Jeff Neal leaves a bunch of half-finished projects around D.C.—most noticeably in the Capitol Riverfront/ballpark area—to take over a "failing brokerage that he closed this year." Moving on: Still developing...this time, in the realm of reality television; he declined to discuss his new show, "except to say that he's not the star." Neal also plays golf and works on a book about politics.
- What happened: Trained architect Dominque Kostelac "amassed up to $5 million, buying, selling and rehabilitating properties in Mount Pleasant, Adams Morgan and Shaw" before beginning a more substantial 21-unit condo in Adams Morgan in 2000. But construction delays caused him to eventually foreclose on nearly all his properties. Moving on: His new business Arganica Farm Club is freshening up palates across the D.C. region with a produce delivery service, based in Charlottesville, plus he produced sorbets and syrups.