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February 9, 2009  
Commonwealth Title

For those of you interested in the legal world, we invite you to our event: "Law Firm Trends in the Age of Obama: What's Hot and What's Not." Star panelists, great networking, great food. BLT Steak, next Tuesday, Feb 17. Please see detailed event description and sign up! 


We think of G'Town as so cool and trendy. Why is the Apple store having such trouble getting in there?


We snapped this photo of the store's potential location a couple hours ago, and talked to Thomas Luebke, Secretary of the U.S. Commission of Fine Arts, who told us that the concern is the scale, not the style. In particular, a 35-foot window. The next board meeting is March 6, but Apple hasn't announced if they'll resubmit designs. However, ignore the idea that this is the Ice Age vs. the iPod. Thomas says revisions aren't unusual. EastBanc's re-development of the Georgetown incinerator went back to the drawing board nearly a dozen times before it became the Ritz.



After Clark Realty exited the Poplar Point project recently, the key question became: What happens now? This afternoon, we talked with DC spokesman Sean Madigan, who says that after the results from an environmental impact study come back in April or May, the city will come up with a few new development scenarios for the site. The next bidding process for developers will happen sometime next fall, he says, so the earliest we'll see any ground being broken would be in two to three years. "We have to be extra-special careful because this is one of the last great pieces of developable land in DC," Sean tells us.


We stopped by Urban Investment Partners last week and caught Heath Wilkinson and Jen Harvey with co-founder Steve Schwat hard at work (or playing tic-tac-toe, we can't really tell). Founded in 1999 by Steve and Wout Couster, the 21-person real estate investment and asset management firm has gone from having 120 residential units in its portfolio to just over 2,000 in the DC area. Steve also owns a promotional products company, Washington Promotions and Printing, so there are a lot of UIP pens around the office.


Here is Steve again (it's musical chairs with one chair and new players) with Wout seated and fellow employee Steve Cox. Their residential property subsidiary recently inherited Hagner Management's assignments when it recruited David Barton, Kenneth Cunningham, Karen Wynn, and Steve Rill. According to Steve, Wout is the plough and he is the horse. "I have never seen a building I didn't want to buy, but Wout is there to make sure they are worth buying."


We had an idyllic lunch on Friday with Rand Construction founder Linda Rabbitt, left, at one of her favorite eateries, Bastille. With her, restaurant co-owner Michelle Poteaux, who purchased it three years ago with her husband. Bastille does hearty Euro-dishes like "pan roasted Scottish salmon fillet with Dijon-cider sauce," and was on Washingtonian's latest top 100 restaurants list. And speaking of restaurants, we plum forgot to mention when we wrote about the new Inox in Tysons last week that Rand did their amazing interior.

Want to know what's going on after 5:00 PM in DC? Read The Scene Bisnow today to learn which party these women attended Friday night. Don't forget to subscribe.

Reznick Group
Commonwealth Title
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