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Last Night on New York Ave

The Hecht's Warehouse is passed by thousands of frustrated commuters every day on New York Ave. But new owner Douglas Development is spicing the property up and showed off some of its latest work with a big bash there last night. (You'll have something to look at, commuters, if the road just isn't doing it for you.)

We snapped Douglas Jemal looking brilliant in blue with longtime friends Kelli and George Winkler. Here are the quick facts on his firm's redevelopment of the historic warehouse: the almost 500k SF property will be turned into 300 apartments and 250k SF of retail and restaurant space. With a raucous band playing classic rock hits behind him, Douglas told us to expect the building's first retail tenant, grocer Mom's Organic Market, to open up later this year. Office space is also in the mix at Hecht's, but Douglas says the firm will hold off on that for now.

Behind Eastdil's Miles Spencer and Finmarc Management's Neil Marcus here, Douglas Development has cut a hole in the old warehouse where a courtyard will eventually be placed for the apartments' residents. Neil tells us Finmarc has closed $450M worth of deals in the past 20 months, including the purchase a few weeks ago of the former AXA suites extended-stay hotel on Wilson Boulevard in the RB Corridor.

The gang from CORE Architects: Christopher PeliHarry Ross, Becca Elmore, and Dale Stewart. Christopher tells us they're working with Douglas on several designs, including the 600 Massachusetts Ave office building as well as a restaurant on 6th Street in Chinatown and a project on Blagden Alley. (Meanwhile, the columns behind them were designed by someone who just played Tetris.)

Here's Samantha Gilmore with Douglas' Joe Abdalla.