Condos and a Three Story Addition could be coming to the Mount Pleasant Auto Repair Shop

3054 Mount Pleasant St, NW

A reader reports:

“Saw this sign at the car repair center on the south end of mt pleasant today. anyone know what’s up with this 3 story addition?”

In late May Urban Turf reported:

“Architect Richard Foster presented plans Tuesday night to ANC 1D on behalf of a client who is considering purchasing Mount Pleasant Auto Repair at 3054 Mount Pleasant Street NW (map), and developing the property into a six-unit condo project with ground-floor retail.”

Updates when more info is known.


35 Comment

  • And just when I thought I found my goto auto shop. Arrrgghh.


    • Not nimbys, my husband and live in the neighborhood and actually use that garage so we’ll be sorry to lose its services. We’re clearly not the only ones because it’s always busy.

  • THREE STORIES! a skyscraper has NO PLACE in mount pleasant!

  • Just when I thought entertainment at the ANC had tapered off after the farmer’s market debacle (which, by the way, is ongoing)… THIS. Fantastic.

    • What was the farmers market debacle? I’ve been out of the loop.

      • Some commissioners tried to deny the permit for the Farmers Market because they think it’s racist. The permit was approved after an outpouring of community support. Those commissioners still refer to “the farmer’s market issue” as if they many emails calling them idiots somehow support their contention.
        One of the same commissioners later proposed a resolution removing any ANC authority over Lamont Park permits and waiving the permit fee for ANC commissioners (!!!!). The one proposing this also happens to be the commissioner who hosts poorly attended musical events in the park and has generated complaints in the past.

        • Here’s the voter turnout for ANC 1D, which Mt Pleasant sits in, from the 2014 election:

          – 1D01: 555 votes
          – 1D0: 259
          – 1D03: 675
          – 1D04: 353
          – 1D05: 291

          There are 58,470 registered voters in 1D, fewer than 40% of voters showed up, and 10% of those who did bother to show up voted on the ANC reps section of the ballot. This is why we wind up with the crazies.

          • My guess is that the ones who complain about the NIMBYs are a big part of the 90% who didn’t vote.

          • Well, that’s remarkable! The entire population of 1D (Mount Pleasant) is 10,512. But there are 58,470 registered voters here? Remarkable.

  • Good! We need more density in the neighborhood to bring in decent businesses. Too many storefronts are unused or underutilized. There’s room for all types of new businesses in MtP without displacing anything that it already there.

    • Like an auto repair shop?

      • I guess I’m being selfish because an auto repair shop is not really the kind of business I had in mind. It doesn’t add to the character of the neighborhood and it makes our little neighborhood carry the burden of traffic from other neighborhoods that don’t have or want a garage.

        And how often does one in the neighborhood really need to use this? I take my car for an oil change maybe twice a year. I’d much rather get in new businesses that people use multiple times a week, rather than just a twice a year convenience.

        • The property owners aren’t interested in bringing in businesses or services; they’re interested in making money, and that means selling to the highest bidder–generally to put in condos. If we’re lucky they’ll have ground-floor retail space, but with so many commercial properties in our neighborhood already unused or underutilized, why would they?

        • “Not the kind of business we want”? Why not? It’s an actual real small business providing services to the neighborhood. You know, the way small towns and neighborhoods used to be. MtP has grocery stores, restaurants, bars, clothing shops, dry cleaners, laundromats, coffee shops, liquor stores, a hardware store, a paint store, a bank, and it’s getting a small movie theater. Why not an auto repair shop?

          • oh yeah, forgot about hairdressers, nail salons, a pharmacy, a dentist, a library, and the farmers market. What’s wrong with an auto shop?

    • I do think it’s too bad that the auto repair shop has been there for a long time, serves a lot of people in the immediate neighborhood, seems to be doing good business, but is apparently going to be displaced because the owners of the property can make more money by selling it and developing it as condos:

    • Totally agree. Plus the repair shop does not do a great job – they fixed an issue with my car, and the same part broke again with the same problem 3 days later.

  • I am very excited by this development. As a resident of the main street, I would love to see more of the one-story buildings get built out with some market-rate residential above. It would increase the economic diversity on the commercial corridor without displacing any of the affordable housing options (e.g., Romero, St. Dennis, Crestwood coop). It also creates an opportunity to add some architectural diversity – like glassy pop-ups above the historic storefronts, which I think have been permitted in other historic districts.

  • I really like that shop. I live down the alley from them and they are great neighbors and have done great work for me and always at a fair price.

    • Me too. That garage is more useful to me than a stack of condos. A healthy economy includes services. Victory to the NIMBYS!

  • I’m a nimby, as in this auto repair shop is almost literally in my backyard, and I will be sad to see them go. They have provided a needed service, are seemingly always busy 6 days a week, and have been nothing but terrific neighbors. That said, I get it. Such is progress.

  • Housing above retail is a much better use for a prime Metro-accessible location. I understand we need auto shops and gas stations in the city, but they should be on the urban fringe. By nature, customers will be arriving by car, so there is no need to have a gas station or auto repair store right around the corner.

    I would be surprised if there is any actual serious opposition to this? I mean they are only proposing 4-stories and 6 condos, not out of scale for an urban commercial district and far less dense than what is currently across the street.

    • “I would be surprised if there is any actual serious opposition to this?”
      That’s cute. In a rational world you’d be 100% spot on, but this is Mt. Pleasant we’re talking about. So instead of entirely correct, you’re just hopelessly naïve.

      • Predicted opposition coalition: The “oh no that’s not enough parking” folks, the “well the HPRB makes me install wood windows so nobody nearby should be able to build anything ever” crowd, and the “anything that might attract white people is racist” crowd.

        • In re: real estate developers/investors:
          “When your only tool is a hammer, the whole world looks like a nail.”

    • “they should be on the urban fringe” Do you mean we should have to drive to Silver Spring or the area by the Arboretum to buy gas?

    • Except we know from prior experience that what is proposed, and what is actually built, are often two very different things. BTW a more practical concern is that that end of the alley is a rather tight bottleneck so I’m curious to see how they would deal with that–hopefully widen it a bit, and not make it worse with additional traffic.

  • We should just go full on Clarendon, and tear down the block. 3 stories, pfft.

  • I’m very excited about this! Mt Pleasant needs more market-rate condos and apartments, and some luxury ones would be nice. The neighborhood has tons of affordable (rent controlled) apartments and lots of row houses, but not enough nice condos and apartments. This will help stop row house conversions. I hope it goes ahead as planned!

  • I hope the retail includes a Subway!

  • I’m sorry to see niche services go – it is indeed a neat feature that Mt. Pleasant has at least one of many things. Though having housing there would be a much more efficient use of this prime location – people want to live in DC and in Mt. Pleasant, and they have to move somewhere. These one-story properties are outdated, and totally inappropriate for a vibrant city.

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