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In The Works: Top 3 Developments In Southwest D.C.

A rendering of the fully completed Wharf project, with the Phase 2 buildings on the right.

The Wharf Phase 2

Developer: Hoffman & Associates, Madison Marquette and PSP Investments

Construction is underway on the second phase of The Wharf, a mile-long mixed-use development strung along an inlet of the Potomac. It will include an expansion of the development’s office assets to go along with the offices, hotels, residences and entertainment venues completed in Phase 1.

Hoffman Madison Waterfront, the joint venture of Hoffman & Associates, Madison Marquette and PSP Investments behind The Wharf, secured $847M to fund its work on Phase 2, reportedly the largest construction loan ever made in the D.C. area. That construction loan came three months after Hoffman Madison refinanced the first phase of The Wharf with an $800M loan from a syndicate led by Wells Fargo.

The seven buildings in the second phase will add another 1.15M SF to the whopping 2M SF already built at the Wharf. Parcels six and seven of the Wharf — the closest lots to Phase 1 — will include approximately 500K SF of Class-A office space and 33K SF of retail space, according to The Wharf’s website. 

The next two buildings will include 235 apartments, 131 hotel rooms and 96 condominiums as well as an additional 28K SF of retail. The final, more low-lying building, on parcel 10, will offer another 60K SF of office space and 15K SF of retail. 

Phase 2 also calls for the building of a new marina with 233 boat slips, and two supporting buildings that will house maritime support services as well as more retail. 

Workers installing new branding for Buzzard Point outside of Audi Field on the day of its 2018 ribbon-cutting.

Buzzard Point Development

Developer: Toll Brothers

Toll Brothers, the Pennsylvania-based residential developer, has acquired two properties on Buzzard Point and reportedly intends to build a mixed-use development with over 400 apartments, retail and possibly even a hotel and underground parking. The property, which had belonged to a construction materials supplier, sits at the corner of Potomac Avenue and First Street SW, directly across the street from Audi Field, the home of D.C. United. 

The new development would also be a five-minute walk to Nationals Park. While construction east of the baseball stadium has been strong in the last five years, with projects like The Yards coming to fruition, development has been slower west of South Capitol Street, and Buzzard Point is still dominated by infill sites and parking lots. 

Toll Brothers reportedly paid more than $50M for the properties. The forthcoming project could signal that Buzzard Point, where most of the land lies in developers’ hands, is finally going to see a boom in growth. Audi Field, which opened its doors in 2018, could become a hub for a new Washington neighborhood.

Rendering by Beyer Blinder Belle of Randall School in Southwest D.C.

Randall School Project

Developer: Lowe, Telesis Corp.

A historic Southwest D.C. school that has been boarded up for over 15 years may soon get a new lease on life. A joint venture of Telesis Corp. and Los Angeles-based Lowe, formerly known as Lowe Enterprises, plans to begin construction soon to add a 12-story apartment building to the property and turn the venerable Randall School into a combined art museum and creative office.

The new building at the Randall School Project is slated to have 498 apartments, 98 of which are being set aside as affordable housing. It will replace some of the original structure of the school, which closed in 1982 but was used as a homeless shelter up until 2004. Two of the remaining school buildings will emerge as an admission-free art museum to house the Rubell Family Collection. The final building is slated to become a creative office for a company in the nonprofit or arts sector, though Lowe has kept the option open to bring in coworking space.

The 2.7-acre Randall School site sits just west of Capitol Street SW, next to a public park and recreation center with a swimming pool, a soccer field, a baseball field, and tennis and basketball courts. As one of the entry points to Southwest from downtown Washington, its developers are hoping to create a new cultural and social hub for the city’s smallest quadrant.

CORRECTION, February 20, 10:45 P.M. ET: A previous version of the story incorrectly stated that Phase 1 of The Wharf had no office space. The first phase of the development did include office space, including 1000 Maine Ave. SW.