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Greystar, Oxford Set To Deliver 750-Unit Capitol Riverfront Project

The two-building Illume development in Capitol Riverfront, seen from New Jersey Avenue SE.

The Capitol Riverfront neighborhood is continuing to welcome hundreds of new apartments every quarter, with the latest major project coming on a site formerly owned by railroad operator CSX.

Greystar Real Estate Partners kicked off leasing for the first building of its 756-unit Illume project, with the first residents expected to move in this month, the developer announced Monday. 

The two-building project at 853 New Jersey Ave. SE is part of the 7.3-acre site formerly operated by CSX Transportation, next to the Interstate 695 overpass. The freight rail operator sold the property in July 2019 for $67.5M to a partnership of Greystar, Oxford Properties and institutional investors advised by J.P. Morgan Global Alternatives

The Illume project represents the first U.S. residential development for Oxford, a Toronto-based firm that has previously focused its U.S. work on office development and investment. The development was designed by R2L:Architects, and its general contractor is John Moriarty & Associates.

The two-building Illume development in Capitol Riverfront, seen from I Street SE.

The first building, featuring 214 units, is set to welcome residents this month, while the second building with 542 units is slated for a Q2 delivery. The buildings are connected via a walking bridge and have entrances from New Jersey Avenue and I Street SE. 

The apartments include studios and one-bedroom, two-bedroom and three-bedroom units that range from 427 SF to 1,276 SF. The rent prices currently range from $1,880 to $4,505.

The amenities include a dog park and pet spa, an 8K SF fitness center, a sauna, a massage room, a business center, an outdoor pool terrace, a beer garden, a movie lounge, two bike rooms and several lounge areas. 

“Unlike other projects in this neighborhood, Illume was designed with green and open space in mind,” Greystar Director of Development John Beinert said in a release. "In addition to providing incredible amenities, we're also excited to introduce a massive dog park, exclusively for Illume residents."  

A rendering of the rooftop pool at the Illume development in Capitol Riverfront.

The project sits on the northern edge of the Capitol Riverfront neighborhood about four blocks from the Navy Yard Metro station and about a half-mile from the Capitol South station and the House of Representatives' office buildings. 

It is the latest in a wave of development that has occurred in the neighborhood over the past several years. The submarket that includes Capitol Riverfront, Capitol Hill and Southwest D.C. delivered 1,745 units during the 12 months ending Sept. 30, according to Delta Associates, down from a city-leading 4,056 units during the prior year. 

The deliveries over the past two years have included an 818-unit project from Tishman Speyer, a 373-unit building from WC Smith, a 312-unit building from Jair Lynch Real Estate Partners, a 305-unit building from Ruben Cos. and Related, a 264-unit building from Brookfield and a 264-unit building from MRP Realty.

This wave of apartment construction isn't expected to stop any time soon. Over the next 36 months starting Oct. 1, Delta Associates projects this submarket will deliver another 4,670 units. Among the future pipeline developments are a 520-unit project from WC Smith at 850 South Capitol St. SE, directly to the west of the new Illume community.