Monday, November 21, 2011

Revised Project at 15th and V Approved by HPRB

The HPRB has approved the Jair Lynch Project located at 15th and V Streets after the architect's plans were modified to integrate the building's scale into the historic neighbhorhood as requested by the Board at its September hearing. In order to do so, the architect increased the percentage of masonry (to glass) on the facade, reduced the height of the corner tower (by one foot on V Street and 4 feet on 15th), decreased the size of all windows, created slimmer bay projections (by a foot-and-a-half), and added more masonry between the ground-floor glass and the tower. Two kinds of glass will now be used in the bays, clear and "fritted" (i.e. enameled).

Included in the development will be two levels of underground parking, 95 apartments - 87 market rate units and 8 subsidized (at 50 to 80% of AMI) - a fitness room, club room, shared interior courtyard, and roof deck.

The property, located at 2005 15th Street, will overtake an existing parking lot that serves the adjacent Paul Laurence Dunbar Apartments (formerly Campbell Heights) at 2001 15th Street, a 10-story, 171-unit apartment designated as affordable senior housing, which is property owned in large part by Jair Lynch. The corner of 15th and U Streets was formerly the location of the historic Dunbar Hotel which was razed in 1974. The hotel was Washington's leading elite black hotel. The Campbell Heights apartments were built in 1978.

Lynch acquired majority ownership of the Dunbar apartments building last year - as the website states - after having "structured a complex package of debt and equity totaling $43.3 million to facilitate the rehabilitation of the property." According to the U Street Neighborhood Association, "The [15th and V Street] project subsidizes a portion of the renovation work being performed on the ... Paul Laurence Dunbar Apartments."