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Monday, April 11, 2011

Progress at the Flats at Atlas District

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Things appear to be moving along quite quickly. this photo is from 4/2. The development is behind Hechinger Mall (i.e., the old Sears site).

13 comments:

Anonymous said...

I've been watching this with interest. They are making incredible progress and I can't wait to see the facade. I hope they are able to lure some quality shops for the first level.

Business at the Capitol City Diner and Jimmy V's is going to spike. Great for them, but I love this area when I'm not in the mood for fighting H Street crowds and I selfishly hope it doesn't become completely overrun.

Anonymous said...

Is that a parking garage that they are building first?

Rayful Edmond said...

Yes, it's a deck parking.

BB said...

an above ground parking garage in the city? Seems to be a great waste of realestate in a city like ours. Why not build it underground and use that space for more retail and condo space? I hope they atleast camouflage to be someonewhat visually appealing. But atleast they're making use of a depressing lot.

Anonymous said...

I think the garage is going to be wrapped in the building facade. I can't remember where I heard this but I don't think it will be visible when the construction is complete.

Anonymous said...

also, have folks noticed the Benning St. Safeway has a sign that says "Ross" - coming soon. That seems like a fairly big deal doesn't it? It will be nice to have some more options for housewares/clothing etc in walking distance.

Rayful Edmond said...

I love how folks always know what is best for development, as if developers are clueless and haven't thought this through.

Below-grade parking costs $40k/space, while deck parking is $15k/space. Be happy they're not building a sea of surface parking at $2k/space.

Not to damn the area with faint praise, because it is an up-and-coming area, however the numbers don't exactly pencil out for below-grade parking.

Renters enjoy having assigned parking on the level of their building, since they don't have to hassle with stairs or an elevator.

oboe said...

@rayful,

I love how some folks don't get that developers will take the cheap route regardless of the long-term impact on the city.

A savvy developer created the H Street Connection. But this ain't 1990. One way to ensure an "up and coming area" remains up and coming forever is to trash the built environment.

Not saying that's what they're doing here, but it's a legitimate concern.

fff said...

whats the eta on the aldi?

Anonymous said...

ETA on the Aldi is mid-August, I think. I did notice the Ross sign after IMGoph posted it on twitter. Kind of excited about that. I hope it will be like a Marshalls.

Rayful Edmond said...

oboe, I understand your concerns. I too prefer below-grade over structured parking. The thing is that if the project can financially only support the construction of deck parking, there is no other choice without District subsidy assistance and/or a tax abatement.

In 5-10 years when rents are comparable with the Western end of H Street (Senate Square, Loree Grand, Flats at 130) I have no doubt that below-grade parking could be underwritten into the deal with sufficient coverage of the debt service. However, this is 2011 and we're lucky that this developer isn't willing to wait around 'till then.

Rob said...

Just curious, not taking sides: although the above-ground parking is less per space, isn't there an opportunity cost of fewer units above ground to rent/sell? Is this already built into those numbers? Is parking built where there couldn't be units, and therefore this isn't a concern? Help me out here...this is interesting.
Also, Rayful, I'm gonna hold you to that rent prediction. I want to be able to charge bigtime rent on my house in Trinidad in five years! ;-) JK.

BB said...

@Ray

I never intended to imply that I knew what was best for the development company or what their reasoning is. Of course above ground parking is going to be cheaper. But if your going to critisize someone's comments you might want to actually stick to what they said. My comment was only directed to what I thought was a better use of a given space. I have no doubt there's a relevant reason why they chose an above ground structure. Weather the developer has the capital, is willing to invest that capital if they have it available or not or is limited to a building schedule that would afford them the extra time it takes to build underground parking versus above ground are a different discussion altogether. My comment was strictly regarding form and function, not weather they should or should not spend the extra capital and the reasons surounding that decision.