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New Kids On The Block: Tenants In Northeast D.C.

Union Market in Northeast DC interior

Most emerging neighborhoods follow a typical kind of script — bring in new residents, and let the commerce and businesses follow and bring prosperity. But Northeast D.C. is flipping the script: Developers are working to secure retail tenants first, with the idea that residents will follow. 

Union Market is one of the most recent success stories in D.C. development. The sprawling food hall has spawned renewed interest in the area west of the NoMa Metro station, including from restaurants like St. Anselm and The Eleanor.

This culinary and cultural boom has powered the construction of numerous new apartment buildings, including the 318-unit Highline and the 432-unit Batley. These new apartment buildings are also making room for traditional anchor tenants like Trader Joe’s, which took the ground-floor space at the neighborhood’s first new apartment complex, The Edison, in March 2018.

A rendering of Douglas' Pappas Tomato Factory redevelopment at 1401 Okie St. NE

Developers are following a similar recipe just up New York Avenue in Ivy City. The former industrial neighborhood has seen strong interest from developers and businesses, especially since the opening of the Hecht Warehouse, a loft apartment building redevelopment. 

One of Brooklyn’s most lauded independent breweries, Other Half Brewing, recently announced the opening of a new branch in the former Pappas Tomato Factory at 1401 Okie St. NE. The brewery will join Compass Coffee, Kick Axe — a recreational ax-throwing concept — and restaurant Gravitas in the building. 

Alcohol production is becoming the name of the game in Ivy City retail: Atlas Brew WorksCity Winery and four separate distilleries now make their homes in Ivy City. Time will tell if the apartment production follows in the same way it did in Union Market.