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Jemals Buy NoMa Church, Plan Conversion To Synagogue

The St. Phillips Baptist Church at 1001 North Capitol St. NE

Douglas Development has acquired the St. Phillips Baptist Church in NoMa with plans to turn the building into a synagogue. 

In a deal that closed Friday, Douglas bought the church from the St. Phillips Baptist Church Trustees for $3.2M, according to the DC Recorder of Deeds. The developer made the acquisition with help from a $2M loan from EagleBank, records show. 

The building, at 1001 North Capitol St. NE, sits next to the John and Jill Ker Conway Residences, an architecturally striking building that recently delivered with 124 micro-units for homeless and disabled veterans.


Norman Jemal, who spoke at Bisnow's Future of Northeast DC event Thursday morning, said he plans to turn the building into a synagogue. The closest synagogue to NoMa is the Sixth & I Historic Synagogue in Chinatown, three-quarters of a mile away, on the other side of I-395. 

For the Jemals, this deal comes just weeks after acquiring the historic Cotton Annex in Southwest DC for $30M at a General Services Administration auction. Douglas is also planning to convert that building, but has thus far been mum on the specifics.