Huge Development News: Alsco Plant/Linens of the Week to be Redeveloped on 700 block of Lamont St, NW – Meeting Wed. Aug. 13th

linens of the week

Thanks to all who sent word and copies of the flyer above:

“Just wanted to let you know that I got a flyer in my mailbox from the Holladay Corporation with a rendering of their plans for the build out of Linens of the Week. The community meeting is at the Park Road substation on August 13th at 7 PM.

Big news for the denizens of Lamont Street.

I always new it would happen and when I first moved in 5 years ago I hated the factory. But I have to say it has really grown on me over the years. They always stopped working at a reasonable hour, it kept parking available and when Alsco took over they really worked on the trash problem. Once I realized it wasn’t “horrible” I kinda started to think it was cool to live near where people actually physically produced something. Some of my old neighbors from Park Road would work there and we would say hi.

The place DID catch fire once a month though, like clockwork.”

Anyone hear early details of the plans? Could be hugely transformative.


34 Comment

  • Holladay was initially trying to keep it quiet and not involve the surrounding community but pressure has forced them to have this meeting. Not a good sign early on but time will tell.

    • Genuine question: Why do you need to know about it? Are they asking for neighbors to pitch money in or provide a zoning variance? Parking relief? Why is the default “we need to know”?

      • Maybe because building a dramatically larger building affects light, privacy, and takes away from a traditional neighborhood feel. Yes, parking will almost definitely be an issue. Not to mention the unearthing of 100s of our rodent friends is another way it will affect neighbors.

        Point being, silence and non-transparency gives the impression that Holladay isn’t so concerned about the existing community. And let’s face it, development in DC hasn’t been completely on the up and up. The less public usually means more back channel dealings.

        • Ugh, I hadn’t even thought about the sunlight issue and our backyard faces this. I’m hoping that the rendering is accurate is showing no more than 4 floors – the current building is about as tall, I think, and hopefully they wouldn’t build directly up to the border of the current ally.
          I’m not comforted by the idea that this developer isn’t exactly community-friendly though…

          • Go to the meeting, it will be important to have representation of neighbors directly backing up to it.

  • Holladay is redeveloping the site by the carwash on 13th St. They kept that secret as long as they could too. It is definitely not a good sign.

  • It was like watching a clock as to when this building would get redeveloped. Glad they are going to keep the facade.

  • But what will happen to the two huge old white wolf-like guard dogs who chill in the parking lot?

    • Ah JK confusing it with a different property. On Sherman.

      • i know the wolf dogs of which you speak. they’re in the way-too-big parking lot of foote’s plumbing, which also seems like a place that could make a killing by selling.

  • First of all, this project MUST go to the zoning commission because it’s under the Georgia Avenue overlay — so the community has the RIGHT to comment on the building. It’s a beautiful building and one of the only remaining examples of early 20th century industrial architecture in the city. Someone should notify Historic Preservation ASAP to have the building designated as historic. Otherwise, Holladay may try to demolish it and make it into another modern glass box. And, ANC 1A better get it together and make sure Holladay is contributing some major community benefits to get this thing approved. Holladay could only keep this juicy secret quiet for so long….

    • ya i think both halves of this building are awesome and it would be cool to use the lower half updated with a modern addition.

    • Why do they have to contribute major community benefits? Maybe we should make you build a community playground in exchange for the right to remodel your own house.

    • Would you prefer to live in a town or a growing city? There are other options. When you moved into DC, did you expect the city to begin to decline in population or grow? Sometimes I really wonder why people choose to live in a city knowing it will change and grow.

    • I think that the development itself will be a “major community benefit,” and I say this even though the construction will practically take place in my living room. The building is a poorly maintained mess right now, with broken windows, leaky drainpipes, coiled barbed wire, and tarps flapping all over the roof. Alsco is by no means treating it as an architectural gem. Development might well be the only realistic way to preserve any of it, and it will also bring much-needed housing. This is not to say that there aren’t lots of good reasons for the community to weigh in — I think there certainly are — but reflexive resistance to any development of this building seems to ignore the realities of urban living in general and this property in particular.

      • I don’t think there is resistance to the development of this property but rather wanting to have access to information that affects their community. Nothing wrong with that.

  • LOL at the all the people hating on the project. 1) What gives you the right to tell others what to do with THEIR property? So long as they are building within existing codes, what gives? If they want a variance then you get to negotiate. 2) This development will be an amazing benefit to the community. More people = more demand for services. This means more restaurants, bars, retail, etc. That’s a good thing…unless you enjoy looking at all the vacant, dilapidated buildings crumbling all along Georgia Ave?

  • Very interesting — this is definitely big news.

  • Come on, historic? it is is an old industrial building, some of the big divided lights are nice, but it it isn’t like this is some classic example of the type. It has always struck me as and odd land use in a neighborhood that is finally showing some signs of momentum in redeveloping. I live a block away and walk past it all the time, I can wait to see it be redeveloped.

  • It actually is historic. It was one of the first modern dry cleaning plants ever made. By a German jewish immigrant I believe. It’s in Kent’s book!

  • By such loose standards,, reasonably old, and “one of the first” virtually anything could be deemed historic. Does it actually have any architectural merit? Hmmm…. Plus as looking at the rendering, granted those things can change, Holliday plan looks to be similar in concept to what Roadside Development did up that the old Hechinger in Tenley Town, where they kept the deco street front, stepped back and then put a modern and contrasting development on top, I think that building is highly successful, I almost wish Holladay would try for contrast with whatever they add.

    • As a neighbor with some experience with the Secretary of the Interior standards, I wanted to weigh in on this question of historic designation…First, I’ve never really thought those buildings were that special. To me, the design actually looks better than what I remember that laundry looking like. But hopefully they’re trying to keep the warehouse part too, seems like it would be a cool apartment or retail something?
      Also from what I can tell, it appears they’re trying to maintain the existing facade and be sympatheitc to the neighborhood scale. The big part appears to sit back pretty far from the street. I can only imagine what we might have gotten. I mean the zoning around here allows 4 story townhouses apparently, based on the other stuff around that location.

  • I for one am THRILLED at the news and think it will be great for the community. It’s not clear to me however whether ALSCO is staying or going–will it still be a laundry facility, or all condos/apartments? As someone whose front door faces the exhaust vents, I pray they are on their way out….
    Does anyone know?

    • My understanding is the physical plant is moving to Landover. I also support the redevelopment; whatever chemicals have been spewing out the windows have killed a number of the trees along Lamont.

    • Yes, Alsco is moving and yes questionable chemicals have mysteriously killed a number of trees and vegetation in the surrounding area.

  • Save Alsco Park!

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