Tuesday, November 26, 2013

WBJ: "McMillan redevelopment plans submitted to D.C. Zoning Commission"

Here is the latest news on McMillan from WBJ reporter Michael Neibauer:

Nov 26, 2013, 2:54pm EST UPDATED: Nov 26, 2013, 3:12pm EST
Michael Neibauer, Staff Reporter- Washington Business Journal

Vision McMillan Partners and the District have jointly submitted the rezoning application required to jump-start redevelopment of the 25-acre McMillan Sand Filtration site in Northwest Washington.
The project is perhaps the District’s most controversial and divisive. The zoning plans, the architecture, the history, the amount of green space allotted — they are all the subject of great debate in neighboring communities.
Now that debate moves to the Zoning Commission. The Historic Preservation Review Board, after months of hearings, tossed its support to the plan last month.
VMP, a team comprising the Trammell Crow Co., EYA and Jair Lynch Development Partners, is proposing to zone McMillan for 2.1 million square feet of development — 1 million square feet in a medical office and health care facility, 94,717 square feet of retail, 566,930 square feet of multifamily residential, 350,000 square feet of row houses and a 17,500-square-foot community center. The team was selected as D.C.’s development partner in 2007.
Roughly 40 percent of the site would remain undeveloped and devoted to parks, landscaping and open areas, according to the 41-page statement of justification that accompanies the planned-unit development application.
“The project will be an architecturally distinct, vibrant, mixed-use development that will provide housing, employment, retail, cultural, healthcare, and recreational opportunities for District residents,” the statement says.
The plan consists of seven parcels:
  • Parcel 1: an 860,000-square-foot healthcare facility with 15,000 square feet of ground floor retail fronting Michigan Avenue, North Capitol Street and First Street.
  • Parcel 2 (future): a 334,950-square-foot residential building with ground floor retail.
  • Parcel 3 (future): a 173,000-square-foot healthcare facility with ground floor retail.
  • Parcel 4: a mixed-use building in the central portion of the site with a grocery store and 280 residential units — 20 percent affordable.
  • Parcel 5: 146 row houses spanning the full width of McMillan, toward the center of the site. Ten percent of the homes will be set aside for households earning up to 80 percent of the area median income.
  • Parcel 6: a community center and 6.2-acre park at the southern end of the site. The community center will feature an indoor pool, outdoor sprayground and playgrounds, a natural amphitheater and a “walking museum” that tells the history of McMillan.
  • Parcel 7: the North Service Court, which provides the principle access to the healthcare facilities.

The entire 92-acre McMillan facility, including the Sand Filtration complex and the neighboring McMillan Reservoir, are listed in the D.C. Inventory of Historic Sites.

“The McMillan site is one of several large underutilized parcels owned by the District targeted for transformation into a new urban community,” the statement says. “The site’s historic use as a slow sand water filtration plant, however, presents unique challenges and opportunities for redevelopment.”


Unknown said...

For those that would like to look over the application (word of caution, it's massive), you can find it here: http://app.dcoz.dc.gov/Content/Search/ViewExhibits.aspx - be aware that there are two pages of documents (54 documents filed in all).

I plan to post the entire application to the MAG website (mcmillanadvisorygroup.wordpress.com) in a format that one can easily view it (consolidate the various filings). I will let the community know when that project is complete and where they may access the files.


Mathew Bader
Bloomingdale Civic Association McMillan Advisory Group Representative

Todd said...

I am leading an effort to redesign parcel 6 (the park portion) and get the city to single that part out for further refinement and community input. To do this, we need to arrive at an improved vision for the park portion based on community input and needs. I have solicited feedback from BCA, Stronghold Civic Association, MAG and FOM. Anybody that wants to send recommendations (specific ones) on how to improve parcel 6 (based on current placement and footprint) please send me something to culturebank @ hotmail. com

Todd said...

Also, fyi, i am not suggesting that the current design needs to be completely canned. Just refined with further amenities and additional programmed space (such as an outdoor cafe, playspace for kids, additional water features, community gardens)...etc. Also, suggesting that the pool/community center be enlarged and somewhat tweaked into a therapeutic family "thermes" center with heated pools and mineral baths for recreational and therapeutic purposes....tying back to the broad themes of water and health (the very origin of McMillan) but also tying into the medical center. ...a family friendly facility NOT a luxury "spa"

Todd said...

Someone asked what a "thermes" is and what is the difference with a "spa"....see here for an example of a thermes: http://www.rupertustherme.de/de/therme/. Thermes and spas have the same origin... there isn't much difference if you visit old spas. Thermes typically refers to placement on a geo-thermal hot spring. This one would be heated by conventional, hydrological and solar. Spas have now typically become luxury destinations with massage..etc.. Thermes are more like public pools but which are heated or have some sort of mineral content (sometimes added). Typically there are many pools of varying temperatures (cold and hot) and mineral contents (saline,...etc). Rupertus therme also has a lap pool.. This is a place people go everyday, just like a public pool. Just less focused on sport and more on wellness.