Owner Of Aging Bethesda Apartments Plans 1,500-Unit High-Rise Redevelopment
A series of garden-style apartments along Bethesda's Battery Lane could be replaced with a host of new residential towers of up to 180 feet tall.
Aldon Management Corp., through the entity Brown Development LLC, filed plans with the Bethesda Downtown Design Advisory Panel that call for replacing 477 aging apartments with nearly 1,500 units across several high-rise buildings.
Aldon, which owns the six garden-style apartment buildings on 11.3 acres on Battery Lane, said it plans to replace the more than 50-year-old buildings with modern housing in a rolling, phased approach.
The total development, expected to be built over the next 10 to 15 years, would include 1.7M SF of residential space. The company is working with three separate architects to design the new buildings.
The development, which the application calls Battery Lane District, would be built on several non-connecting parcels on the north and south sides of Battery Lane between Woodmont Avenue and Keystone Avenue. It sits next to the Harris Teeter-anchored Flats 8300 building, roughly a half-mile from the under-construction Marriott International headquarters and less than a mile from the Bethesda Metro station.
The largest of the planned redevelopments at 4949 Battery Lane, designed by KGD Architecture, would include two 180-foot-tall towers and a smaller, seven-story building with a total of 520 dwelling units.
At 4858 Battery Lane, the developer plans a 160-foot-tall building with 400 total units, designed by Cooper Carry. The architect would also design the adjacent building at 4900 Battery Lane, which is planned to be a 120-foot-tall building with 315 units.
The two smaller buildings at 4857 Battery Lane and 4998 Battery Lane are being designed by DNC Architects Inc. The 4857 Battery building would be 86 feet tall with 110 units, and the 4998 Battery building would be 70 feet tall with 153 units.
Of the 1,498 units planned, 318 would be moderately priced dwelling units. The application said zero of the existing 477 units are classified as MPDUs. The project would also include a host of infrastructure improvements, including enhancements to the North Bethesda Trail, two new through-block connections for pedestrians and bicycles, new landscaping to turn Battery Lane into a "canopy corridor" and about 44K SF of public open space.
In addition to the three building architects, Aldon is working with Rodgers Consulting as the landscape architect and Shulman Rogers as its land-use attorney. Aldon owns two additional buildings on Battery Lane totaling 329 units, which it is not planning to redevelop.
"With the retention of certain existing buildings and the redevelopment of six of its buildings using three different architectural firms, the applicant's intent is to weave a complex urban fabric, melding old and new, and adding critical, usable connecting spaces for an authentic, desirable residential neighborhood built over time," the application said.
The owner informed tenants last month it planned to redevelop the buildings over the next 15 years, Bethesda Magazine reported, though it did not provide details until the latest filing. The Bethesda Downtown Design Advisory Panel will take up the proposal at its March 27 meeting.