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Work Finally Begins at the old Italian Embassy on 16th Street “will be preserved and converted into 134 luxury apartment homes”

by Prince Of Petworth — November 28, 2016 at 10:05 pm 11 Comments

Rendering via Mill Creek Residential

From a press release:

“Mill Creek Residential, a leading multifamily investor and operator specializing in premier apartment communities across the U.S., today announced the start of construction and redevelopment of the former Italian Embassy building located at 2700 16th NW, which will be preserved and converted into 134 luxury apartment homes.

The acquisition, renovation and redevelopment of the site is being made possible by an investment from Rockwood Capital, a privately held real estate investment firm with $9.3 billion in real estate assets under management. Helaba is providing the construction financing for the project.

“Simply put, the historic revitalization of the Embassy, coupled with the vibrancy of the neighborhood, will make this one of the premier communities in the Washington, DC region” said Sean Caldwell, senior managing director of the Mid-Atlantic region for Mill Creek.

As part of the redevelopment, Mill Creek will maintain the Neo-Renaissance architecture of the building and construct an adjacent nine-story high-rise with two levels of below-grade parking. The existing Embassy building will be renovated to contain a select number of the community’s exclusive townhouse-style residences, which will face a private courtyard and garden, as well as the community’s amenities.

The community will consist of studio, 1-, 2- and 3-bedroom apartment homes that feature premium high-tech and high-end features.

Community amenities will be designed with a European cosmopolitan aesthetic in an effort to preserve the boutique appeal of the Italian Embassy. Included will be a resident clubhouse, business center, rooftop terrace, club-quality fitness center, and landscaped outdoor terraces.

“The Italian Embassy will blend the history of this irreplaceable piece of architecture with an elevated distinction of prestige for our residents,” said Joe Muffler, development associate for Mill Creek.

The original Embassy building was completed in 1925 and designed by Whitney Wetmore and Charles D. Warren, a tandem also credited with the design of Grand Central Terminal in New York. The Embassy building served as the diplomatic mission of the Italian Republic to the United States until 2002, when a new chancery was constructed approximately two miles away at 3000 Whitehaven Street. Mill Creek’s designs for redevelopment are set to comply with the guidelines set forth by the Historic Preservation Review Board.

The commuter-friendly site is bordered by 16th Street to the East, Fuller Street to the South and Mozart Street to the West. 16th Street NW is one of the city’s few authentic north-south roads and provides expedient access to K Street in downtown, the Capital Beltway, and Silver Spring, the Maryland-based business hub at the northernmost portion of the metro area. Also in close proximity are Adams Morgan and the U Street Corridor, the latter of which is one of Washington D.C.’s fastest-growing submarkets. The walkable area also is home to an eclectic mix of restaurants, bars and retail shops with a variety of nightlife and cultural destinations.

Including the Italian Embassy community, Mill Creek has developed more than 4,100 apartments in the Washington, D.C. area.”

How the site looks today:




  • M

    I’m glad the building is getting developed (it’s been falling apart and abandoned for a long time), but I’m really sad they cut down every tree and piece of greenery on the property. I hope they have some major landscape plans in the works.

    • Anon

      Agreed. It’s a bummer if they got permits to remove the beautiful trees out front just to put in more parking.

    • Colin

      Did you look at the rendering? It shows trees and some nice landscaping.

      • Anon

        The trees they took down were fully mature. It will take decades to replace them.

    • Jakendc

      Those tree’s were a fixture on 16th and gorgeous and extremely old.. It saddened me to see them cut down..

  • I’m in Mt. Pleasant so this is practically right around the corner from me. Such a beautiful building and such prime real estate, I’ve been amazed to see it vacant and falling into disrepair all these years.

  • LMH

    Looks nice, but I wonder if the development includes any affordable housing units?

  • James W.

    Is there anything this city won’t turn into ‘luxury apartment homes?’ Just sayin’

    • Contessa of Cleveland Park

      And, how do “apartment homes” differ from “apartments?”

      • stacksp

        Apartment homes are apartments at home/mortgage prices lol. You stamp it with the luxury tag to justify the home pricing

  • kerlin4321

    Are there any apartment/condo “homes” being built these days that are NOT “luxury homes”?


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