If you don't see images, click here to view
Story Ideas  Events 
     |      Forward to a Friend
To ensure delivery, please add mark@bisnow.com to your address book, learn how
Real Estate Bisnow
LegalTechAssociationWomenMedicalThe Scene
October 28, 2008

Big shout-out to great sponsor the Crystal City BID! On Sunday, their Marine Corps Marathon festivities marked the BID’s 2nd big test of its Crystal Green “Low to No Waste” event policy. The BID maximized on-street recycling, used only compostable materials in the “food zone,” and helped educate consumers about the process of composting. It was a great success!


Yes, St. Elizabeths (for some reason, no apostrophe) is the famed psychiatric hospital founded in 1852 and pretty much now abandoned. But its 356-acre campuses straddling Martin Luther King Ave, SE, won’t stay undeveloped for long. Last week, Mayor Fenty announced plans to create 2M SF of new mixed-use projects and 750k SF of renovated historic space on the DC-owned East Campus. The federally controlled West Campus is slated for the new Department of Homeland Security HQ. Having left our high-level security clearance in our other pants, we trained our gaze to the 173-acre East and yesterday tracked down DC Office of Planning Director Harriet Tregoning for the latest.


Harriet tells us 14,000 DHS employees in one place will inspire many East Campus businesses. For example, since the heavily fortified DHS would require security clearance, it won’t be ideal for large meetings. Hotel conference facilities will fit better on the East side. She also tells us the open space and grassy quad in the East’s proposed Maple Campus Neighborhood looks “very much like some ivy league campuses,” so a national security university wouldn’t be a stretch. (She’s had preliminary talks testing that idea.) First, however, her office must secure DC Council approval in early November.

Lerner Enterprises

The District’s plan would create five distinct neighborhoods: North Campus, Maple Campus, Town Square, Metro Station, and Mr. Rogers’ (kidding, it’s called CT Village). The northern portion would be used for additional DHS office space and parking, and St. Elizabeths Hospital’s new 435k SF facility (due in late ’09) would remain at the easternmost point. Harriet also expects interaction between East and West to develop as lunch spots crop up and retailers make the metro-to-office walk from Congress Heights and Anacostia more inviting. You can still weigh in, tonight at the Chapel at St. Elizabeths’ East Campus, at a final Mayor’s hearing on the plan. Harriet will be there taking testimony and says concerns (or compliments) are welcome.


Quick history lesson: DC took control of the East Campus in 1987 as part of federal deregulation of mental healthcare. For more recent history, we asked Harriet what she was working on right before we spoke with her. Turns out, she was in a meeting on the Neighborhood Heritage Trails, such as the one that traces historic spots near her own Adams Morgan abode. She reports there are plans to add trails in Columbia Heights and Deanwood. After the rain yesterday, we may wait until spring to dust off our walking shoes.


We’re talking about the results in the housing markets. We don’t normally focus on residential, but everyone has a bit of a prurient interest in what changes an election will bring to house prices, right? We went to see Donna Evers yesterday afternoon, whose signs we see everywhere. Young though she is, she’s been following the cycles as a top broker since Jimmy Carter. She says elections don’t usually change things because there aren’t really that many houses bought or sold compared to total stock. But she does think this time that, whoever’s elected, people will feel it’s a big change, like “the rescue squad is here,” and they’ll be primed for getting back to business. Translation: Optimism that housing will pick up again.  


She said the market was steadily improving until the bailout failed and it’s been frozen ever since. DC was a strong spot before then. She says this year Fairfax went down 12%, Montgomery County went down 7.2%, but DC actually went up 4%. She finds it amusing that the District is such a hot place for young, upscale singles, since when she arrived (from La Jolla, no less, in ’72) it was known as just a city of gray haired men. By the way, on the side she and her husband make wine: Twins Oaks Tavern Winery in Bluemont, Va.


Crystal City Bid prez Angela Fox and Vornado/Charles E. Smith’s Allison Asplin, at a post Marine Corps Marathon concert.  Oh, with the BoDeans!!

Reznick Group
Lerner Enterprises
Total Engineering
Builders' Ball
Advertise with Bisnow
CONTACT EDITORIAL                             CONTACT ADVERTISING                              CONTACT GENERAL INFO

This newsletter is a journalistic news source which accepts no payment for featured interviews. It is supported by conventional advertisers clearly identified in the right hand column. You have been selected to receive it either through prior contact or professional association. If you have received it in error, please accept our apologies and unsubscribe at bottom of the newsletter. © 2008, Bisnow on Business, Inc., 1323 Connecticut Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20036. All rights reserved.

| Subscribe | Forward to a Friend
Arlington Economic Development Arlington Real Estate Showcase Registration The JBG Companies Monday Properties