Housing Complex

Diving-Board Apartments and Dog-Grooming Stations: A Virtual Tour of CityMarket at O


The two-block development project that promises to transform a section of Shaw is inching toward completion. Roadside Development's CityMarket at O, which replaces the former O Street Market and the run-down Giant supermarket on 9th Street NW, will include a new Giant, a 182-room Cambria Suites hotel, and senior and market-rate housing. And after some false starts, the end is finally in sight.

On July 8, leasing began for the apartments. On Aug. 21, Roadside and city officials will dedicate the 90-unit senior building, which is reserved for residents 55 years and up making under 60 percent of area median income. (The name of the senior building is still under wraps, though I'm told it'll be named after a D.C. notable I've probably never heard of.) On Nov. 1, the Giant is set to open. And on Nov. 4, the first apartments will be ready for move-in.

The development's marketers are painting CityMarket at O in superlative terms. "Move over, oxygen," begins a promotional booklet. "There's a new element in town." Not only is CityMarket itself "as luxurious as it is comforting, as stylish as it is connected," the booklet says, it will also "be the centerpiece in the rebirth of the entire district."

Big talk. Can reality match? Let's find out with a brief tour of CityMarket at O—both as it is now and as it will be.

The Giant will be the company's flagship store, with a sushi counter and coffee bar. Like the old Giant on the site, it will have a surface parking lot for customers that will take up much of the block between 8th and 9th streets. The Giant will occupy the former market space at 9th and O streets:


The roof of the 1881 market collapsed in a 2003 snowstorm. Roadside was able to use some of the original bricks in rebuilding the market:


... as well as some of the original slate on the rooftop steeple:


CityMarket will feature 407 market-rate apartments in two buildings, straddling a rebuilt 8th Street. Studios, ranging from 407 to 544 square feet, start at $1,800, while junior one-bedrooms (526 to 614) start at $2,005. Many of the junior one-bedrooms don't have windows in the bedrooms, but rather frosted glass doors to allow in some of the natural light from the living rooms.

Two-bedroom apartments (850 to 1,407) start at $2,830, though corner units like this one likely cost a bit more:


There are two two-bedroom units that stand out, literally. Here are the so-called diving-board apartments that jut out from the side of the east building:


The two junior one-bedrooms above the diving-board units don't have as much space on the inside, but they have generous balconies atop the units below:


And the eastward view from the balconies isn't shabby:


The apartment rents might seem exorbitant for their size and location. But they're partly explained by the buildings' amenities. The east building's roof will have a dog park and fire pits; the west roof will have an infinity pool, a demonstration kitchen, and, yes, more fire pits. Not yuppie enough for you? OK—this rooftop space will be a dog-grooming station:


But dusty work-in-progress shots tell only a fraction of the story. So here, according to Roadside's renderings, is what the place will soon look like:

CMO_Exterior_O-Street_Aerial_800px (1)




CMO_Exterior_Residences-Rooftop_800px (1)

Photos by Aaron Wiener. Renderings courtesy of CityMarket at O.

  • Keith

    Aaron when will the hotel open?

  • Trey Graham

    Surface parking? Seriously? I'm super-curious to know what the rationale for that is. Isn't the square footage in that part of town way too pricey for that kind of thing?

  • Carmen

    I dont think there will be surface parking at all - there is a 500-space underground lot, and no room on the surface for parking.

  • david

    I have been to the site multiple times. There is no.surface parking. Please clarify...

  • John

    Where are all these people coming from? I know we have about 1000 people a month moving into DC but that's not going to continue over the long haul.

  • hotdog!

    A dog park on the roof during the deecee summer sounds like a place to fry my feet; will canines be welcome in the pool?

    As much as young families clamour about *safe* downtown playspaces for children, I'm surprised the developers didn't prioritized child play spaces over a dog park. UHOP is building its own rec center down the street because the adjacent NStPark is too often filled with gang thugs and the birdseye view depicted of the KennedyRec, to the east, doesn't give any impression of the violence and vulgarity among many of the local users or the bullet holes that appear in the windows every year. The great thing about the shopping center in CoHi and SilverSpring is the water play areas that are a huge attraction for a wide variety of families and a great way to beat the heat.

    Funny, no grand view of the 1330Apts — aka, "historic Shaw crime magnet" and home to some of the District's most heinous criminals according to DOJ reports (its actually slyly tucked away in the background of image 1 and the source of the perspective of image 10) — due south of the development. All the chic young chicks in their high heels are going to have a heck of a time running past 1330Apts at night coming home from downtown frolicking. 95% of the 1330Apts residents are good loving honest hardworking people, but the others harbour the criminal element and it's brought down the entire community for decades. (SEE MPD CRIME MAPS before signing on the bottom line OR the WCP: http://www.washingtoncitypaper.com/articles/35651/truce-and-consequences.)

  • http://www.washingtoncitypaper.com/blogs/housingcomplex/2013/08/09/morning-links-241/ DCMOMMA

    "Morning Links
    Posted by Aaron Wiener on Aug. 9, 2013 at 8:05 am

    D.C.'s the third-best city NOT TO HAVE KIDS. [Estately]"

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  • https://twitter.com/ShawingtonTimes/status/333396630097248256/photo/1 Addicted Gas Guzzler

    If the community bothered to examine the initial plans or click over to the developer's nifty web site, they'd know the beauty of the surface parking is that it's accessed from 8th St, internal to the development, west of the giant Giant (in about the same footprint of the old Soviet Giant), as the developers explained ad nauseam in public meetings. The unsightly ozone destroyer / globalwarmer reststop will not be apparent from 7th, 9th, O or P streets. Hopefully it will have adequate summer ventilation and security cameras.

    Where's the non resident bike parking going to be located? The more they build, the more will come. Sheltered bike parking is a great model used out in Virginia (security cams would be a plus):

    If the bike lanes didn't end at N St to the south, thousands pedalers who commute downtown would have safer access and not bother with the dangerous NY Ave traffic hazards north of the Safeway.

  • http://youandmeandwalliemakethree.com Alexa

    I simply can't understand it. Tons of government folks in this city have stagnant salaries and DC continues to build more and more expensive housing. Having watched the changes in this and other areas (ie Logan Circle) over the years, I'm certainly pleased with the growth and more people interested in moving closer in, etc. But the prices are prohibitive for lots of people looking to actually save toward purchase one day.

  • Addicted Gas Guzzler

    @ Alexa

    Old world capital cities around the globe aren't traditionally homes for the poor or middle class. It is a shame that with all the potential to create new housing in the US capital, that HUD and our black and "Democrat" city officials were not more involved, intelligent, strategic and humane in creating a city that supported a truly diverse level of incomes. The folks working at the Cambria Suites hotel, or down the street at the Marriott hotels, wont be able to live in or near the development — if they can afford living in the city at all (non resident income tax revenue goes out to MD/VA). Commuting 1-2hrs with high transportation costs on a low wage salary to clean a toilet or make a bed is something Democrats (before Jesse Sr's fall from grace) used to talk about regularly. Our Mayoral candidates are silent about effective results oriented strategies to maintain a diverse sustainable city so they don't annoy their developer donors. It's a confluence of incompetence and "republican"-style catering to the rich, that results in tragic missed opportunities. Rachel Maddow's, MHP and other MSNBC are not screeching about this; if republicans had any power in this liberal ghetto, the talking heads would be on them like flies.

  • Colin

    What stagnant salaries? They can still get promotions and step increases.

  • Salary Free Fridays


    I don't know a fed worker who is not being furloughed and expecting imminent RIFs after sequester season is over after govt evaluates furlough staff it can actually do without.

    What world are you living in? I want to visit.

  • Salary Free Fridays

    via Seattle's Amazon/WaPo:

    In the city, and the city only, the across-the-board federal cuts known as sequestration are dragging the economy down faster than builders can lift it up.

    The District has lost about 2,600 jobs on net since October, even as the metropolitan area has added about 30,000."

    In D.C., building booms but hiring fizzles

  • qwerty

    The district government should require all district employees to actually live in the city.

  • Leave it to the competent liberals in charge

    according to MPD <10% of their entry level officers (can afford to ) live in the District. Your tax dollars going to work via deecee payrolls helping Maryland and Virginia residents thanks to DC.gov deals w/ developers.

  • Biker Billy

    It's a shame that advocacy organizations like WABA weren't able to effectively advocate for the developers or the District to improve biking infrastructure in Shaw and Mt. Vernon Square that @Addicted Gas Guzzler mentioned. This is a massive redevelopment project and bike infrastructure improvements for bike access for residents and visitors to CityMarket @ O from all over the city would have been welcome.

  • http://www.streetfilms.org/portland-bike-parking/ Addicted Gas Guzzler


    Bike corrals and bike oasises are still a possibility — for O St at least — before they recreate the sidewalks. In the space of two cars (usually one, but up to 4-6 passengers per car) you can install bike racks for 18-22 cyclists and up the green bona fides of the development.

    To say that Shaw's local elected leaders haven't been visionary, active or responsive to best practices on environmental issues for decades is an under statement, but since the head of the ANC is a triathlete herself, there's hope she might still take advantage of opportunities to make Shaw a model for bike/ped and gasguzzler development throughout the District.

  • Gaga for Gas


    Surface retail and hotel parking at @CityMarketAtO:


    Arron, you should add the image to your gallery.

  • keithindc

    Did a construction tour w/building museum... the "surface parking" is inside a garage but on the street level so customers can take a cart from the Giant exit directly to car without going up or down a level. It may not be the most efficient but Giant had a long term lease on the property for the building that included a surface parking lot - so the developers designed around those perameters. The delivery truck parking bays are a floor below street level.

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  • Craig

    Who were the architects? Ikea & Ikea?