A look at what's going on in Trinidad, on H Street, and in the larger area north of Capitol Hill.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

WBJ: Douglas Development Plots Mixed Use Development on H Street

Screen Shot 2013-10-29 at 10.14.40 PM
The existing CDC building. Google Streetview

The Washington Business Journal has the details on Douglas Development's plans for the former headquarters of the H Street Community Development Corporation (501 H Street).

-Douglas Development paid $4.9 million for the property
-Initial list price was $8.6 million
-50 apartment units
-10,000 square feet of retail space
-Too early to discuss the identity of potential retail tenants
-Douglas hopes to break ground in late 2014

It's very early in the process on this one, & that can be easy to forget. But here's the thing, in early September Urban Turf reported on this Douglas project. Back then, the plan was 32 residential units, and 30,000 square feet of retail space. There was even mention of Crate & Barrel as a potential tenant.  That won't happen if the retail space is reduced to 10,000 square feet.

Before that the plan was a 48 unit Jair Lynch project on the site with 4,000 square feet of retail.

Before that the CDC had plans to expand their headquarters into a five story building with affordable housing.

Whew! Confused yet?


Anonymous 4realz said...

My prediction is that Douglas will sit on this property until it is practically falling apart. We will not see new development on this site in our lifetime.


Oct 30, 2013, 9:49:00 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

"My prediction is that Douglas will sit on this property until it is practically falling apart. We will not see new development on this site in our lifetime."

Maybe not a lifetime but certainly 5-10 years. Douglas Jemal is one stubborn motherfucker when it comes to development. Wonderbread sat how long before build renovated? Hecht Warehouse? Uline?

Oct 30, 2013, 12:46:00 PM

Blogger inked said...

Hey guys,
I've been letting it slide a bit recently, but could we try to keep the language a little clean? I want this to be a site all readers can enjoy. I also think it detracts from your argument/comment if you have o drop an f bomb every few sentences.

Oct 30, 2013, 1:21:00 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

He's apparently doing it up in Frederick, MD as well, with half of the vacant buildings in town (especially along the canal) long-empty shells with his name on them.

Oct 30, 2013, 3:12:00 PM

Blogger Derek said...

Jamel only recently bought the old Hecht's Warehouse buildings. Some of them have been since torn down. When Fererated (Macy's) bought Hecht's, they unloaded a number of properties. Patriot Developments out of Philly bought it, than the recession happened. Now Jamel has it. I think it is where one of the Wal-Marts is going. I did a building survey of it a few years back.

Oct 30, 2013, 3:44:00 PM

Anonymous Guess who said...

I get frustrated with his land-banking as well, but trust me, you would be singing a different tune if it was your money at on the line. Above a certain size, the success or failure of a given project is largely dependent upon its timing--when it delivers to market and the market AT THAT TIME is willing to bear the rents you underwrote...at the pace you underwrote absorption. You may purchase the land all equity, but once you go in the ground you've closed on construction financing and at that point you're officially on the clock...regardless how obstinate all players on the development team and the market as a whole decide to react. Mind you, over and above the risks associated with staying within budget and hitting the rents you projected, you also have to consider the additional money you put up at the closing of the construction loan, namely interest reserves to cover your losses during the construction and stabilization periods (...and you thought the closing costs associated with your recent home purchase in Trinidad were onerous...lol ;-). Perhaps it says something about your "frothy" H Street hotbed that Insight, Jair, Rappaport, Fundrise and the guys at the SE corner of 3rd and H still haven't gone in the ground yet.

Like I said, Jemal's presence can be a bit of a vexing proposition, but I can't blame them for getting in front of the competition to secure a property they believe to have value...but are unsure the exact "sweet-spot" timing for development.

Oct 30, 2013, 4:48:00 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Perhaps it says something about your "frothy" H Street hotbed that Insight, Jair, Rappaport, Fundrise and the guys at the SE corner of 3rd and H still haven't gone in the ground yet."

Thanks for explaining this to the masses. I had to explain the underwriting/timing issue repeatedly when Guy Steuart took his time with the Giant property (and Dreyfuss with the G Street property for that matter).

My only complaint about the issue is that the city could apply a bit more muscle. PUDs shouldn't be renewed in perpetuity, especially properties that are blighted and useless until redeveloped (like the 300 block of 3rd).

Oct 30, 2013, 7:35:00 PM

Anonymous Tony Goodman, ANC 6C06 said...

501 H will be on the agenda of the next ANC 6C Planning, Zoning & Environment Committee meeting next week. 11/6 7pm at Kaiser (700 2nd NE). This is not a voting item yet - this is an informal discussion to help guide their upcoming PUD submission.

Oct 30, 2013, 10:29:00 PM

Anonymous brookland_rez said...

"We love H Street, H Street is exploding," Jemal said.

The sale was brokered by KW Commercial's Anthony Bolling, who said he believes the mixed-use project could be a solid bet for H Street given the amount of investment that has come to the neighborhood in the past few years. Bolling said he believes H Street has moved beyond the point of being an emerging neighborhood at this point.

"I don't characterize [Douglas] as pioneering, and I certainly don't view H Street as an emerging market," he said. "I don't know what it is, but it's not in its infancy."

I think it's cool that a big brokerage firm has said that H St has moved beyond emerging.

Oct 31, 2013, 9:17:00 AM

Anonymous E in Rosedale said...

No discussion about Douglas Jemal sitting on properties is complete without mentioning the former WSSC HQ in Hyattsville. He's owned that for something like 8 or 10 years? That said, I cautiously trust that he'll bring a high-quality project to the site when the time is right.

Oct 31, 2013, 9:43:00 AM

Blogger pat said...

GIven the amazing projects Doug has brought to DC, I guess we just have to put on our helmets and pads and hang on.

Nov 5, 2013, 7:56:00 PM


Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home