Archive for November, 2013

The Slight Act

D.C.’s hopes for some degree of authority over its own building heights were all but dashed last week when the National Capital Planning Commission voted not to recommend that Congress make any major changes to the Height Act. Supporters of the 1910 law cheered the decision as an affirmation that D.C.’s skyline should retain a [...]

Washington Post Building to Be Sold to Carr Properties

First, the Washington Post Co. shed the Washington Post. Then it shed its name. And now, finally, it has rid itself of the aging property that serves as its headquarters.
The company, now known as the Graham Holdings Company, will sell its flagship building and land on 15th Street NW to developer Carr Properties for about $159 [...]

Free-Spending Director Is Out at Housing Finance Agency

The D.C. Housing Finance Agency has a new leader. Maria Day-Marshall, who previously served as DCHFA General Counsel, is now the interim executive director, the agency just announced.
Conspicuously absent from the announcement? Any mention of Harry Sewell, the outgoing head of DCHFA.
Sewell, as reported by my colleague Will Sommer, was placed on administrative leave earlier this month after [...]

With 245-Apartment Complex, JBG Continues Takeover of 8th Street NW

Having successfully conquered the area around the intersection of 14th and U streets NW, the JBG Companies have rounded the corner and will soon have a second epicenter along 8th Street NW and Florida Avenue.
The Chevy Chase, Md.-based developer has already altered the skyline of the 14th and U corner, with the nine-story, 268-apartment Louie [...]

A Big Chunk of Congress Heights Was Just Auctioned Off. Hardly Anyone Noticed.

On typical days, the sprawling collection of abandoned, mostly-built houses and vacant lots tucked behind 4th Street SE sits fenced-in and empty, a distorted mirror image of the flattened construction site across the street, which will soon become the new Ballou High School. But on a recent Wednesday afternoon, a crowd of mostly men (mostly [...]

D.C.’s Homeless Shelter Crisis, by the Numbers

D.C. is required by law to provide shelter for all homeless people when the temperature with windchill drops below freezing. This year, those so-called hypothermia conditions first set in two weeks ago. But last year, there weren’t enough beds to accommodate every homeless family, and so the District put up many of them in hotels, [...]

Adams Morgan’s Funkiest House Is About to Realize Its Dream

In February, I reported on a house that's not quite like its Adams Morgan neighbors. Shiny wallpaper depicting topless women and blackface minstrels lines the first and second floors. There's no living room or dining room, just shared bathrooms on each hallway. The walls are in varying states of deterioration.
And, most significantly, the house was [...]

Morning Links

Consultant sought for RFK Stadium redevelopment. [Post]
Zoning Commission explores making Inclusionary Zoning units more affordable. [GGW]
The U.S. Patent Office could soon have another new landlord. [WBJ]
Holiday season strains food banks. [WJLA]
Most Washingtonians support a $12.50 minimum wage. [LL]
Want the best seats in Minibar on New Year's Eve? It'll cost you $3,000. [Y&H]
Council committee approves bill [...]

Congress Will Take Up Height Act on Dec. 2

The congressional committee with oversight of the District will hold a hearing on Dec. 2 to discuss the future of the Height Act, two weeks after the D.C. government and the National Capital Planning Commission submitted to Congress two competing sets of recommendations for changes to the 1910 law that caps D.C.'s building heights.
The hearing [...]

Greenleaf Redevelopment Could Be Delayed as D.C. Misses Cut on Planning Grant

In May, the D.C. Housing Authority applied for a federal planning grant to begin the process of redeveloping the Greenleaf public housing complex that occupies four blocks near the Waterfront Metro station. On Friday, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development announced the nine winners of the 2013 Choice Neighborhoods Planning Grants—and D.C. wasn't among [...]