Historic Building built in 1860s bought by Developer for $2 Million

415 M Street, NW

Last week we took a look at some of the awesome homes on the 400 block of M Street, NW. Big news for one of the historic ones at 415 M St, NW – [email protected] tweets:

“Blackrock Holdings paid $2M for 415 M St. NW last June. Looks like new owner is planning 2, three-story additions for a total of 6 units.”


Old photo and history from a heritage trail plaque after the jump.



13 Comment

  • so it’s going to be a 6-story building? How is that possible in a historic district? i’m a block away and we’re not even allowed to build a roof deck.

    • This is a massive lot – they can building in the side yard and plenty of room to build behind the original structure. There’s also a large carriage house/garage in the backyard that will probably be demo’d and built upon.
      $2m was for the potential to develop a large piece of land, not the original mess of a structure.

    • I read that to mean two additional portions of the building that would also be three stories tall.

    • Also, PIVS does not show this to be in a historic district. While the building might have historical value, it does not appear to be protected.

      • PIVS shows this as R-4 zoning
        “Permits matter-of-right development of single-family residential uses (including detached, semi-detached, row dwellings, and flats), churches and public schools with a minimum lot width of 18 feet, a minimum lot area of 1,800 square feet and a maximum lot occupancy of 60% for row dwellings, churches and flats, a minimum lot width of 30 feet and a minimum lot area of 3,000 square feet for semi-detached structures, a minimum lot width of 40 feet and a minimum lot area of 4,000 square feet and 40% lot occupancy for all other structures (20% lot occupancy for public recreation and community centers); and a maximum height of three (3) stories/forty (40) feet (60 feet for churches and schools and 45 feet for public recreation and community centers). Conversions of existing buildings to apartments are permitted for lots with a minimum lot area of 900 square feet per dwelling unit. Rear yard requirement is twenty (20) feet.”

      • PIVS has it as a contributing building to the mount vernon square historic district. Can also see it at the OP website (http://planning.dc.gov/DC/Planning/Historic+Preservation/Maps+and+Information/Landmarks+and+Districts/Historic+District+Maps/Mount+Vernon+Square+Historic+District+Map)

  • 1) The carriage house/garage is technically a different piece of property according to the DC Atlas but there’s not ownership information. Maybe they combined the lots but I’m not sure
    2) The lot includes the vacant land next to it so I assume one of the two additions will be there and the other will be behind the existing structure.
    3) This is the perfect kind of development DC needs. Infill in places where the transportation network can handle it. Sure, someone is going to make a lot of money doing it but that doesn’t mean it’s not win-win for the city.

  • surprised to see their name on this project

  • I live on this block, and was delighted to hear that this beautiful building will be restored/refurbished. The lots on this block are narrow but quite deep, so there’s pleny of room behind the original building for an addition. I live in a gut-renovated rowhouse that was converted to condos with a new structure in the rear yard, and FWIW, the developer said that he could not make any changes to the front facade because of the historic designation. Hopefully that will be the case with this building as well.

  • What book is that from? I’m interested in learning more about historic spots in DC- plus I love the old photos.

  • This building was highlighted in a documentary film shown at the Our City Film Festival a couple of years ago. Glad to see it’s being restored

  • And that building developed into the Hebrew Home for the Aged at 1125 Spring Road NW, and into a new management office next door at 1131 Spring. When you look at 1125, you can still see the Stars of David in the facade. The District owns the building now, and I hope we can again get movement to get the property developed without any taxpayer subsidies while preserving the historical facade.

    The original organization still exists and runs a very successful home in Maryland now. They are very forthcoming with historical information as well.

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