Mixed Use Hotel Coming to Mt. Vernon Square – Check Out a Rendering

Rendering via Peeples 901 5th Street NW Presentation

From a press release:

“Mayor Vincent C. Gray today announced the selection of the team of Peebles Corporation and Walker Group to redevelop the land parcel located at the intersection of 5th Street and I Street NW in Ward 6. Peebles Corporation and Walker Group were chosen as the team’s Best and Final Offer (BAFO) provided the highest monetary value for the land and the most affordable housing units. The proposal also includes a hotel.

“We are thankful for the tremendous interest we received in this parcel and are pleased to announce a selection as we close out the solicitation process,” said Mayor Gray. “The Peebles Corporation and Walker Group will transform this valuable site into a thriving and productive asset that will serve the District of Columbia and beyond.”

The parcel is situated in the heart of the Mount Vernon Triangle neighborhood, three blocks from the Walter E. Washington Convention Center, within walking distance to Metro lines, and nearby to public amenities such as Union Station and the Verizon Center.

The Request for Expressions of Interest (RFEI) was issued by the Office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development (DMPED) in April of 2013. DMPED received 10 responses and identified four shortlisted teams in December of 2013. Each shortlisted team submitted their Best and Final Offers in February 2014. As part of the first steps of the disposition process, the District will commence negotiations with the selected team over the next several weeks.”

5th & I The Peebles Corp Comm Presentation (PDF)

16 Comment

  • The optics of this are terrible. Building a luxury condotel with dog spa but pushing all the affordable housing to Anacostia.

    (But in city’s defense a 200-unit 50/50 market rate and affordable building on MLK Ave near the metro sounds awesome and I wish the developer and the city would just unite to build that without having to bargain it away)

  • Pretty sure its just a hotel.

    The affordable units are going to be in Anacostia.


  • it manages to draw on all the current architectural cliches in DC and be uniquely ugly at the same time. I wish people would quit talking about optics–it looks awful, just say so.

    • I was referring not to the actual look. Just building a luxury building here and shunting all the affordable housing to the other side of the river. Those optics.

      I couldn’t care less what the building looks like. Anything has to be better than what’s already in the Mediocre Mile

      • Have never heard the term “Mediocre Mile” before, but I think it’s accurate. Is that a real term or just something you made up? I dig it.

    • an added disappointment is that The Standard is known for architecturally interesting buildings elsewhere (particularly their High Line and DTLA properties), but have signed on with a pretty, well, standard building here — both in terms of appearance and location.

      that said, I can see how Gray’s people would make a decision to just go with the highest bidder now that there’s no political blowback to be felt.

  • I think it’s a win-win. More units of affordable housing than any of the other proposals, and it will generate a steady stream of 7-days-a-week foot traffic to the area, which was what many neighborhood residents wanted. (Right now this is a bit of a dead zone on evenings/weekends.) I am a bit surprised that the city chose this proposal, though, given the optics that Anonymous 4:11 pointed out and the fact that the ANC recommended a different proposal that included on-site affordable housing. I suspected that the optics would win out, but I’m happy they didn’t.

    • What does Gray care about optics? He’s on his way out and not freighted with pressure to make unnecessary political concessions that wouldn’t maximize the value of this land. Of course, Peebles was a major donor, so it may be that there is a payback element as well. Regardless, I agree that this project will likely bring the most benefits to those living in the community.

      • Yes there’s the slight chance that payback might be involved here by the peebles group. Who wants to be which group our mayor joins after he gets usurped in the next election?

  • I think the “optics” of this project look just fine.
    Listen, I’m all for affordable housing, but here’s the thing. The city loses $10k per year per unit in taxes at this location to put affordable housing here. Assume the units average out to $500k (and with one bedrooms at City Center four blocks away STARTING at $600k and two bedrooms STARTING at $1m, that’s being generous). That’s a $4,250 a year property tax bill ($0.85 per $100).
    Now let’s look at the person(s) who live there. Let’s assume they made a healthy down payment and they earn, either individually or as a couple, $90k a year. In DC taxes, they’re paying $2200 + 8.5% on every dollar over $40k a year, or $6,450. We’ll throw in about $20k in deductions, so that brings us down to $4,750. We’re at $9k a year in taxes now ($4,250 property taxes + $4,750 income taxes).
    Throw in another grand in sales taxes, alcohol taxes, and prepared food taxes and the District of Columbia gets a $10,000 payday every year on April 15th just for not forcing a developer to build affordable housing there, but instead letting them build to the highest and best use. At 10 affordable housing units, it’s $100,000k a year, over a million bucks a decade, FOREVER, that the District loses here.
    And what happens then? The need for social services and civic services doesn’t just go down by a hundred grand a year. If the District has the ability to create housing that someone wants badly enough to not only borrow a half a million dollars to buy but also wants so badly that they’ll write a check for $10k to the city every single year for eternity ON TOP of a mortgage, I think they’re stupid not to do it. Collect a couple of those $10k checks and you start being able to afford to build a LOT of schools, day cares, affordable apartments, fire stations, rec centers, community pools, or whatever else you might feel compelled to build.

    • Well said mate. I wish a lot more people get this simple math when decisions are made by the city. Per the ANC vote, the Peebles development was ranked the last (or very close to it).

  • Let’s put affordable housing here, which is the right thing to do, and just increase income taxes on rich people to make up the difference (as some are complaining about lost tax from cheaper units downtown)? Ghettoizing those in need of affordable housing in Anacostia does not make a good housing policy.

    • There were plenty affordable alleyways and discarded mattresses here in the recent past for our tranny hooker friends to occupy. How did that turn out?

    • The city should just give low income families a $2,000 monthly housing voucher and make them find market rate units that will fit into their budgets. Piling low income families into high rise buildings downtown or segregating them into the SE makes no sense.

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