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Judging New Buildings – Capitol View on 14th

by Prince Of Petworth — September 5, 2012 at 4:00 pm 105 Comments

14th and Belmont St, NW Looking North

A reader sends word that the Capitol View on 14th building is set to be completed in November.

The UDR Website says:

Capitol View on 14th Apartment Homes features studios, one bedroom and two bedroom apartments for rent in Washington DC. Steps from the bistro dining of the U Street Corridor, Capitol View is brand new apartment community moments from the Metro, Lincoln Theatre, and the National Mall. Your Capitol View home features elegant granite countertops, hardwood floors, and an in-home washer/dryer. Capitol View residents enjoy a fitness center and sparkling pool.

Prices range from $2070 for a studio to $5,786 for a 2 bed.

The transformation of 14th Street, NW continues – like the way the building turned out?

14th and Chapin St, NW Looking South

Anyone remember the Nehemiah Shopping Center:

June 2008

  • Identified

    wow, a box with a lot of glass. That is so original!

    $5,786 for a 2 bed…haaaahaaaahaaaaa

    DC rent is totally affordable…. for Mittens at least.

  • Tim

    I’m not new to DC’s expensiveness, but daaaaaammnnn those rents are insane

  • Anonymous

    $2070 for a studio?


  • anon

    UDR is smoking some serious crack if they think they are going to get anyone to pay $5100 bucks a month for a 2 bedroom apt. They’ve outpriced themselves consideably. Even the PN Hoffman Condos closer to U Street don’t rent out for that much.

    Why would you pay that much when you can rent this 3bd/2.5 ba right in the center of Columbia Heights for $3900 bucks?

    UDR needs to fire their marketing consultant.

    • Caleb

      Because it has a doorman, a fitness center, pool…

      • So do identical buildings charging 2/3rds as much in better neighbourhoods.

        • Anonymous

          I’m not supporting the high rents this building is putting out, but can you give a couple examples? I think 2/3’s of this rent in better neighborhoods is an exaggeration. I’d be curious where these equivalent buildings in better neighborhoods are that are so cheap.

  • Anonymous

    it’s a very nice office building.

  • Mel181

    Yawn. Another generic property opening up in and around U Street. The beginng of the end of the uniqueness that is/was U Street.

    What exactly is a ‘sparking pool’? Is the water sparkling wine?

    • Anonymous

      broken glass.

    • What uniqueness? U St is just another bar district now, and has been for a while. I like the new (’06-present) U St, but let’s not pretend we can tell the difference between it, A-M, and Logan. This is the Liquoridor, and the “neighbourhoods” are about as easy to differentiate as the Laphroig-and-Absinthe cocktails the bars they contain all serve. It’s as if every bar wishes they could star in a Hemingway paean to authenticity.

      • Anonymous

        What do you want?

      • Anonymous

        Do you live on Wallach Place?

      • Anonymous

        Are you kidding me? You can’t tell the difference between U Street, Adams Morgan and Logan Circle? They all have bars that serve alcohol, so yes, I guess in that regard they’re the same as Times Square in NYC or South Beach Miami. I think architecturally, the buildings springing up on 14th Street have been a pretty glassy, I don’t think that is going to destroy the feel of the neighborhood. The sidestreets have largely retained their historic architecture, and a lot of it is still standing on 14th Street.

  • Anonymous

    $5,786 for a 2 bed = joke? $3000 per bedroom? People, people, people, for this much money a month you can buy a $1 million mansion. Don’t flush your money down the toilet like this.

    • Anonymous

      Right, except you’ll need more than $1 million to get a mansion in DC. Unless you’re speaking generically.

      • Anonymous

        Even if you don’t think the townhouses that $1 million buys in DC count as mansions, the point remains that if your goal is to live in a crappy glass box you can do this for much, much cheaper. For example, you could spend $400,000 on a gut job, buy $10,000 of glass and then furnish it however you wish with your remaining $590,000.

        • Anonymous

          Really, you’re comparing a gut job unit (in a house, I guess, since no condo would let you do this) to a turn key luxury apartment? The commentariat on this site never ceases to amaze.

          • Anonymous

            I live in a million plus dollar row house and my mortgage (90 percent financing) is far less than this. Insane to rent at that price.

          • Anonymous

            actually, a million dollar mortgage is just about the same as this.

        • Anonymous

          Uh, I don’t think the glass is the driving force for people renting here.

  • What everyone else said…even for DC, that is absurdly expensive. And it’s still not landscaped.

    • Anonymous

      I feel that way about the Foundry Lofts near me, which I recall being similarly priced. At least this location is more desirable.

      Also, you’d be surprised at the crazy prices people pay to be near U Street. I know someone who is paying $1300 for a single bedroom in a 1-bedroom apartment. The apartment’s living room is being rented out as a makeshift bedroom by a stranger, and it was recently discovered that she’s paying $1750!

  • Anonymous

    I just passed by this building over the weekend. I thought to myself “Wow—that building looks really nice!” This is a wonderful improvement to the neighborhood vs the old strip mall that was there!

  • Anonymous

    soon the gentrifiers will get gentrified!

    • R

      It’s already happening. I think people are thinking it’s “safe” enough now to move away from West End and Georgetown to U Street. I think we’ll see a Brooks Brothers soon.

  • arinsc

    this building looks fine, bu5t worried that 14th street is turning into an avenue of boxes…

    • KenyonDweller

      boxes made of ticky tacky . . .

  • KenyonDweller

    Waaay better than Nehemiah Center. I always hated that bleak piece of crap strip mall.

    • Anonymous


  • TheAssistant

    For someone who is living two blocks away (in a perfectly nice, though not at all luxury, building and pays $1,785 for a huge one bedroom), I hope the street-level retail fills in. The building immediately across from Capitol View, on 14th and Florida, has the YWCA, and, err…that’s it. This block is dying for some actual retail, especially since this is the last block that has any potential until you hit DC-USA and environs.

    • Anon

      I’m surprised the building across the street hasn’t been able to attract national retailers who love empty new construction like this. I would die if Uniqlo moved in. It would be nice to have something local, but am I wrong to assume a local place isn’t going to be able to afford that space?

    • Prince Of Petworth
      • TheAssistant

        That’s one long buildout. The retail space is vacant and still has “want to lease?” signs hanging from the window. Though the YWCA does have a gym, and there’s a CrossFit gym across the street. Maybe the competition was too much?

        I, for one, would love a reasonably-priced small grocery (a la Rodman’s in Friendship Heights). The Giant is a trek, and Yes! rarely has what I need.

        • Prince Of Petworth

          I think they were just fundraising. BETA is still coming. There is a new banner for them out front on the corner around a pole.

          • sb

            i go to beta and so only know things from that perspective, but I’ve heard they’re just waiting on Pepco to do some work and do a few final touches and then Beta will relocate. Their lease at their current location is ending soon so they really want to be out–construction, permits, etc. took them longer than expected but it does appear to be happening.

          • JEM

            The buildout is on hold. I live down the street from this building and about a week ago a big orange sticker was put on the BETA door saying that they’d violated the terms of their construction permit. Since then, all the permits in the space have come down from the window and all construction seems to have stopped.

        • Anonymous

          Trader Joe’s is coming to 14th and U Street

  • Anonymous

    It really does look a lot better in person. The glass they used has a very interesting reflective quality and tint. The metal cross beams play really well against the glass and brick. The construction overall looks really solid.

    The studios are in the 580-620 square feet, which is quite big. They’ve installed drywall to separate the bedroom area from the living space — they just can’t call it a legal one-bedroom.

    $5786/month is for 2 bed, 2 bath corner units with a balcony. The average 2-bedroom rents for around $4300/month.

    Now what’s really interesting about the website is that the rendering on the main page makes the apartment building look like it’s on level ground, when in reality, it’s on a pretty steep hill. They probably did this to make the property look more enticing, since people don’t like walking up hills.

  • And that does not include parking, which they want $245 for in the garage.

  • Glad to see others ranting about the rent. I’ve lived in DC for 6 years, and I’ve paid ridiculous rents before myself, but I almost did a spit take when I read this.

    You’ve got to be kidding me.

    • Anonymous

      If you take a look at the size and amenities offered with each unit (W/D in every unit, new kitchens, hardwood floors), along with the building amenities (24-hour front desk, fitness center, business center, roof deck with pool, dry cleaner, etc), the prices are not really that out of line. This is a luxury building in the middle of a lot of very desirable neighborhoods.

      • Considering I’m paying $3200 for a 1200 sq ft two-bedroom at the Thomas Circle end of 14th street in a fairly nice building with all those amenities save the hardwoods and the pool, I’d say those prices are on crack.

        • Anonymous

          I’m not sure where you live, but the best comparison in your neighborhood that comes to mind is Post’s property on Massachusetts Ave and 15th St just west of Thomas Circle. This is a fairly new construction (2002) by a luxury developer (Post Properties) with fitness center, gym, 24-hour concierge, business center, pool, roof deck, on-site dry cleaning, washer dryer in every unit, hardwood floors, new kitchens with granite and stainless appliances. Basically identical to Capitol View in almost every way, except it’s a few years older and has had time to adjust to market demands.

          This property is currently showing availability for a 610-square foot studio apartment starting at $2600/month and a 1400 square foot, 2-bed, 2-bath high level corner unit starting at $5305.

      • No Way

        I paid $2,000 month for a VERY spacious 1 bedroom in Friendship Heights with a great balcony, a parking spot in the garage, 24 hour front desk, amazing rooftop pool, gym, and always-on-call maintenance. The updated units were just a couple hundred more per month and I was just a block away from all the great shopping, movie theater, and plenty of restaurants. It’s not a hopping neighborhood at night, but it is incredibly safe.

        • Yeah, but you live in Friendship Heights. So, no.

          • No Way

            Lived. As I said, Friendship is pretty dull. I also didn’t get harassed constantly every time I stepped out my door like I do now. I love my current neighborhood (Petworth), but it’s definitely night and day in terms of safety. I don’t think the amenities of the building justify the stark difference in price.

  • Frank

    Keep in mind that they also want $500 for a “move-in” fee (non-refundable), $500/year for an “amenity fee” (even though the roof deck won’t be complete until next spring), and a monthly trash fee on top of the monthly utility bills. In other words, the quoted rents don’t paint an accurate picture of what you’d actually pay each month.

    • Anonymous

      Amenity fees and (especially) move in fees are standard issue at buildings like this.

      New construction buildings, especially, will often waive such fees to attract customers.

    • Anonymous

      People renting in this sort of place could give a rats ass about a $500 move in fee.

      I think this is great because it will create more and more development pressure in this area that rightfully ought to have tons of development. Along with the Louis, it is starting to get developed like the Pearl District in Portland. Woo Hoo.

      • Silly

        You assume that these places will actually be filled. Not a chance… someone with the money necessary to rent one of these units is more likely to make an equity investment than hemorrhage cash to a rip-off.

        • Anonymous

          lol at the naivete

          • Anonymous

            is calling some naive the new “move back to iowa”?

        • TStreet

          New rental buildings with similar rents are filling up faster than anticipated. This building will be occupied in no time. There’s a lot of people with a lot of income in this region who want to live in DC’s inner city neighborhoods.

  • Anonymous

    These prices remind me why I’m throwing in the towel on this city.

    I’m sure there apartments are nice on the inside and U street is a fun neighborhood. But, let’s be real. This area still has a long way to go in terms on ammenities and safety.

    You could live in Manhattan for these prices. Yeah, not new construction, but still.

    • Anonymous

      right, and you could own a farm in topeka for these prices, but you couldn’t live in Dubai for these prices.

      cost in other cities is completely irrelevant to prices here. why can’t people get that through their heads?

      • Anonymous

        Actually, cost of living for other East Coast cities is pretty relevant. Cities compete for educated professionals to move there, based on things like cost of living, quality of life, culture, etc.

    • Anonymous

      Actually, you could not live in a building like this in Manhattan for the prices that they are charging. You would have to pay a lot more and a parking space for $245 a month would not be an option either.

  • Anonymous

    Is a $600 non-refundable dog deposit normal? Also- they have restrictions on certain breeds (including mixes). “Dogs that
    are purebreds or mixes of the following breeds are prohibited:
    Akita, Alaskan Malamute, Chow-Chow, Doberman, German
    Shepherd, Great Dane, Pit Bull (American Staffordshire Terrier,
    American Pit Bull Terrier, Staffordshire Bull Terrier), Rottweiler,
    Saint Bernard, Shar Pei, and Siberian Husky.” REALLY?

    • anonymous

      haha- that is hilarious! So I can’t have a Great Dane, but apparently I can bring in an Irish Wolfhound or Scottish Deerhound. Wow.

    • KristenDub

      That’s pretty standard. Ours was $500 and I know many people who have paid they same. Unfortunately if you want a dog in many apartment buildings, especially new construction, that’s the cost. Plus, sometimes $50/month in “pet rent.”

    • Not a dog owner, but what’s wrong with German Shepherds? I’ve never heard a single negative thing about them, besides some health problems they tend to get more than other dogs.

  • The rents will be coming down soon, I think they’re hoping to trap some unsuspecting recent arrivals. The apartment glut will make them rethink this pricing. Not only is that high, but 14th and Chapin? Far from metro, in the dodgy bit between U and Columbia Heights; I wouldn’t pay more than 2500-2750 for a 2 bedroom in that neighbourhood.

    • Anonymous

      I don’t think they’ll have much trouble finding tenants.

      Also the apartment is 4 blocks from the metro, across the street from bus stops for the 14th street corridor Metrobuses, and close to Capital Bikeshare.

    • eli

      Are you kidding? It’s only a few blocks from the metro, near the latest 14th ST development (see 14W and the Mike Isabella restaurants) and is across from one of the most expensive apartment buildings in the city. Sure it’s a bit questionable a few blocks up, but that’s most places in DC. The exact location is perfectly safe and convenient.

      • silly

        It’s across the street from section 8 housing, actually… but it doesn’t seem reality isn’t much of a concern here.

    • Anonymous

      apartment glut?


      face it, the demand in this city is crazy strong. I live in bloomingdale, and my neighbor’s rowhouse-conversion basement condo just went under contract in 10 days and sold for $495,000 – $5,000 over asking. I’m talking about a 2 bedroom below grade condominium with no parking. It was a nice place, and bloomingdale is a pretty hot neighborhood, but you have to realize that’s what the market supports.

      • Anonymous

        Bloomingdale is the pits.

        • Anonymous

          it’s the pits where 2 bedroom basement condos sell for half a million dollars after 10 days on the market.

          • Anonymous

            hope your neighbor has flood insurance.

    • Anonymous

      I live on Belmont Street across from this building and I can tell you for fact that the area is safe. We are 4 blocks up from metro, tons of bus service on 14, very close to lots and lots of restaurants/bars. It is convenient, but yet far enough from the U street crowd. Sorry to say, but you don’t know what you are talking about when it comes to this part of town.

      • DC This Week

        My friends car was stolen on Belmont 1 block up a few months ago and it was found in PG County. So that’s crap it’s a safe street and police are CONSTANTLY at that corner. As for the rent, I have another friend who pays about $2500 for a gorgeous 2 bed 2 bath with his OWN roofdeck on Clifton 1 block up. He locked in that rate 3 years ago however. It’s ridiculous. People should build equity and their net worth and invest in a property at that price. As a homeowner in DC I think it is just plain stupid to pay someone else $5 k a month when you can be working towards paying off your home and owning. For $500 k you can have an equally gorgeous 2 bedroom in similar area. I can’t understand it.

    • Anonymous

      What is this guy smoking?

    • People are not thinking about the sequestration/fiscal cliff that is about to hit DC like a ton of bricks in January. Regardless of who wins the Presidency, the next four years are going to be VERY tough on DC professionals. Say good-bye to your well-paid contractors and the wealthy individuals who own those companies.

      Both the Dems and especially the GOP are eager to enact spending cuts. Federal workers are looking at pay freezes for the next few years and anyone who is depending on a gov’t contract is going to find themselves not getting those contracts renewed.

      • There’s no way sequestration/fiscal cliff will go down as is. A deal will be cut after the election.

        • Yes, a deal will be cut. But even if it’s 50% of what is planned, that is still catastrophic for the DC-MD-VA area economy. This area – and its real estate market – totally escaped the pain of 2007-2011. Shit is gonna start getting real in January when DC becomes the scapegoat. Add in the very real prospect of increased interest rates within the next two years.

          The “up!-up!-up!” mentality of DC area property owners is in for a rude awakening. Until then, I just keep saving more for a bigger down payment.

    • llama

      Having lived at 14th and Chapin for nearly 3 years, I can tell you it’s a better location that you seem to believe. Right near Meridian Park and about 12 minutes to either Metro, plus you’re right between two major bus lines and have easy access to the Circulator. However, those prices are insane. I paid $2400 for a 2br/2ba in a condo building on Chapin that was built in 2006 – gated parking included.

  • Anonymous

    Join The Rent In Dc Is Too Damn High Party Lol

  • Marcus Aurelius

    Top real estate question circa 2005 – “Who’s buying homes at these prices?”

    Top real estate question circa 2012 – “Who’s renting apartments at these prices?”

  • harumph

    All that and no parking!? I live a block from here and have been wondering what our parking situation will be like when this building is occupied. It’s going to be a nightmare!

  • Wow that is pricey. So I guess the next new building north of Chapin on 14th is going to hit $6k for a 2 bedroom? Don’t laugh, it could happen!

  • Wow

    These prices sure do make buying look attractive. For the price of the two bedroom, you could buy a one million dollar home. And when you decide to move you get to sell it and get your money back (hopefully).

    • Anonymous

      Owning a home imposes severe costs in terms of maintenance and lack of liquidity (i.e. you can’t count on being able to sell at a given price in a given timeframe if you need or want to). This is your trade-off as a renter for not building equity. Renters tend to think that homeowners are sitting on gold mines that appreciate while they the renters throw money away. I think it’s safe to say none of these renters has ever had to replace a roof or a central air conditioning unit, or install a french drain in a leaking basement. Yes, its true that “owning” will build equity – IF you stay for a long time, and IF the market continues to improve. But there are very real costs.

  • Anonymous

    I have a feeling that this apartment building could actually be converted back to condos in few years. I am saying that because of the following: Size of units, nicely done solid building, it has architectural interests, and it probably has one of the best views in the city being on the hill.

  • Yes, those rents are high. I lived in Allegro in CH when it first opened and I thought $2400 was high. But that place was FILLED with 20-something a-holes who acted like they were still living in their Georgetown dormitory. People who can afford these prices will pay them partly to avoid that type of resident makeup. Very few youngsters can afford these high prices so you end up with a more mature and respectful class of residents in the building.

  • Anonymous

    The brochure says they offer flexible pricing online, “which allows you to pick the price you want to pay.” So is this some type of apartment auction with a $5,100 reserve?

  • Anonymous

    Holy smokes thats pricey. makes me think I am way under pricing rent on my two bedroom renovated condo two blocks north of this. I thought charging 2k/month was pushing it. Clearly I am not following real estate trends in this area close enough.

    • DeesNuts

      And this over-inflated ‘market pricing’ is exactly why renters are getting pushed out of the area too…

  • NoLongerNew2CH

    I actually like this building a lot. WORLDS better than the hideous former strip mall there, and it adds a LOT of housing to the area and makes good use of space close to a ton of public transit. And for such a large building, I actually think that it is quite attractive and not as cookie-cutter as others are suggesting, very nice materials utilized.

    But, I agree the rents are ridiculous. Aren’t these substantially higher than, say, Highland Park, for an area that is not really more desirable at this point? I would be surprised if they can get much over $4000 for a two bedroom there, but I guess I could be proven wrong. Also, I could have SWORN that many or most of the units in this building were supposed to be priced for moderate-income tenants, am I totally confused / misremembering here? I am therefore even more shocked by the price points listed.

    • Anonymous

      Ding ding ding you just hit the jackpot on why this place is priced the way it is. Meddling liberals in the city government force developers to set aside units for “affordable housing,” which is then handed to poor people living on the dole, which forces developers to charge higher prices for the remaining units. Its the remaining units that you’re seeing prices for.

      • So basically they are having individuals pay astronomical rents to live in the same building with low income renters. This should make for an interesting sociological experiment/reality TV show.

        I wonder if they will segregate the low income renters to separate floors?

        • Anonymous

          There are affordable set aside units in EVERY new construction building in DC in the last 7 years. Usually its about 8% of the total. In buildings that were originally owned by DC, its closer to 30% set aside. So in Kenyon Sq, someone may be have paid 500k for their condo and their neighbor paid 220k for the same amount of space.
          But yes, it drives up the cost for all the market rate properties. For the PP who said this was “over inflation”..wrong. Property is worth whatever someone is willing to pay. Although DC govt does its best to make the situation worse with rent control (which has never ever been proven to effectively deliver affordable housing to those who need it most and it has been proven to drive up all other costs in non rent control units), set asides and making DC so tenant friendly (its practically impossible to kick out at non paying tenant) that landlords jack up the rent as high as possible to weed out shitty tenants and get as much money as possible while they can. Im a landlord.

  • Anonymous

    despite all the comments from the usual haters on here, this is so much better than the nehemiah center.

    • Eh, they’re hating on the rent, not the building. I don’t think anyone is getting nostalgic about the nehemiah center

  • tawl

    I am an architect and this was the first project I worked on when I got out of school. I am so excited it’s finally done, especially since it was a hole in the ground for so long while the economy sucked.

    When we were designing it, I told myself I’d love to live in one of the loft units…too bad I can’t afford it now looking at the prices!

  • JGK

    >2k for a studio? I’d rather have the Nehemiah drive-bys back.

  • JGK

    Cold comfort, but this bldg definitely looks a lot better than the exposed cinder block monstrosities just south of it….

  • Anonymous

    Are you kidding me… This market is getting outrageous. 2 grand for a studio=STUPID

  • Anonymous

    yo, i heard that when you move into this place, you get a complementary pair of boat shoes, salmon-colored shorts, and a knit sweater to drape over your shoulders. can anyone back this up?

  • cave dweller

    From 1985 to 1999 41 people were shot stabbed or beaten to death the 4 square block area of this bldg…Its not the sterile architecture , the pretentious assumptions that this condo and rental madness willl continue or your correct perception that some of you have that this 14th and U , columbia heights, Petworth,Bloomingdale madness will soon end badly its that their is not even a sign post or plack for the 456 homicide victems in 1993 alone . So keep wearing those skin tight minis and enjoy your drunken crawl home from the Wonderland ballroom cause this disrespect will get us all hurt….soon.

  • wandafish

    I am now so very, very grateful for my 2B/2Ba apartment on 16th and V, still in the U Street Corridor and just three blocks away, for $2700. Yup, I’m bragging, but it’s only so others know to support buildings that offer reasonable prices for rent, not this ridiculous monstrosity of a money sink.


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