New Kids On The Block: Mount Vernon Triangle
Apple has chosen the Carnegie Library in Mount Vernon Square for its next D.C. store. The Historic Preservation Review Board greenlighted Apple’s move in June. Events DC, which owns and manages the library, Walter E. Washington Convention Center, RFK Stadium and Nationals Park, among other venues, approved the lease in July after failed attempts to relocate the International Spy Museum there.
Steel magnate and prolific philanthropist Andrew Carnegie donated the cash for the library, which opened in 1903 as the first desegregated public building in D.C.
Apple plans to restore the building, preserving its heritage and character, and use the space for concerts, art installations and tech-oriented continuing education programs.
Renderings show Apple’s plans to line a product demonstration area with trees to create a “Genius Grove.” Apple’s choice of landmark seems symbolic, reflecting the general shift from print to digital media. Apple has a 10-year lease with two five-year extension options for 19K SF of the 63K SF library.
Prather’s on the Alley
Prather’s on the Alley, arriving in a 2K SF space at 455 Eye St. NW, will feature approachable American cuisine with an indoor/outdoor feel. The owners, Dean Mosones and Mark Minicucci, both Mount Vernon Triangle residents, hope the small scale will create an intimate atmosphere and thus differentiate it from the larger, nearby establishments. Prather’s will seat 60 inside and about 30 outside.
The restaurant will retain some structural elements from the building's past life as an auto repair shop, like garage bay openings and industrial-style windows. The owners, who are relatively new to the restaurant scene, plan to invest from $750K to $1M to bring their vision to fruition. Their chef, Akhtar Nawab, is a protégé of "Top Chef" head judge Tom Colicchio, and mentored David Chang, who is now a widely recognized New York City-based restaurateur, television personality and the head of the Momofuku restaurant empire.
D.C. law firm Venable, which ranked 66th in the 2016 AmLaw 100 survey, moved into a highly amenitized, collaborative, 245K SF space in the newly built office at 600 Massachusetts Ave. NW at the end of February.
The office design reflects the gradual shift among law firms toward open floor plans, with fewer private and more shared offices for junior partners. The trend is driven by baby boomer partners’ retirement, an increase in telecommuting and firms’ desires to downsize.
At Venable’s new office, architectural features like glass interior walls and a six-level staircase, coupled with a design that promotes spontaneous interaction, reveal the company’s forward-looking focus, a break from traditional firms’ stodgy, formal interiors. Employees will have access to an indoor/outdoor rooftop deck, a fitness center and an exclusive bocce court.