Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Learn About the Future of Union Station

Amtrak, Union Station Redevelopment Corporation, Ashkenazy Acquisition Corporation, and Akridge (the air rights developer) will host a public information session on the future of Union Station. It takes place on Wednesday, August 15 from 5:30pm-7:30pm, at Union Station, Gate D (across from Starbucks). This open house will give members of the public the opportunity to learn more about the Amtrak Union Station Master Plan and how it will affect the surrounding communities. The plan will help guide the transportation capacity expansion needed to accommodate future growth for all the users of Union Station – intercity rail, bus, commuter, and high-speed rail, as well as local residents.


NiggaPlz said...

They need a whole lotta fuckin' money to make this whole dream happen, not sure where they are gonna find it. The country, city, and Amtrak are all broke.

Anonymous said...

The private development is on track and will happen.

Burnham Place (if I remember right that's the name) is going to be massive.

It's going to reshape that area for generations.

It goes forward regardless of what Union Station and Amtrak and the like can or can't do.

This is the time for residents to tell developers we really need ground floor retail and restaurants, a walkable accessible area, some architecture worthy of that stellar location, etc.

Otherwise we will get sterile, bland office-type buildings with nothing there for residents.

mizage said...

Can someone tell me when the current project in front of Union Station is supposed to finish? The construction site seems a bit abandoned.

Andrew said...

A lot of the cost actually comes from long-term infrastructure improvements that Amtrak wants to make, and will be difficult to accomplish once the private development gets built.

Although the price of the whole package is indeed *very* high, it's hard to argue with any of the individual components of the project. They're going to be laying the groundwork for future growth that's almost certainly going to happen.

That said, they probably should look for some realistic places to cut costs...

Tony Goodman said...

The project is scheduled to complete in September. It seems slow right now because the last 5% is always the toughest!

Truly, this project must go together with much of Amtrak's work, but the construction methods and plans will allow for construction to go simultaneously up (for the air rights project) & down (for Amtrak/MARC/VRE). It's also important to note that the capacity increases for MARC in particular are even greater than for Amtrak - this is a major project for local commuter rail too.

ANC 6C worked with the Office of Planning for several years to shape the new zoning for the air rights project, and we got several important items written into the project even before Akridge goes through the approval process:

1) The FAR (floor area ratio) is 6.5, while the maximum height varies from 90-130 feet. This can't just be a bunch of blocky buildings.
2) A significant residential component is required.
3) They need to install some streets at the level of the top of H Street.
4) Retail is required along the entire H Street frontage.
5) Additional entrances to Union Station are required.
6) All of the buildings need to go through a design review process with DC government, Commission on Fine Arts, Architect of the Capitol, and ANC 6C.