First Look: Concept Design for Capitol Hill’s Southeast Safeway Redevelopment AKA “Beckert’s Park”
By Larry Janezich
Monday night, Safeway senior real estate manager Tim McNamera and developer Bryant Foulger of Foulger-Pratt Group, the developer Safeway has selected to redevelop the Capitol Hill southeast Safeway site, sponsored a community meeting in Hill Center. The purpose, according to ANC6B Planning and Zoning Committee Chair Nick Burger was to provide an opportunity for residents to learn about the project and provide feedback. ANC6B will provide input regarding the project in June, both at the Planning and Zoning Committee meeting and at the June meeting of the full ANC.
Foulger unveiled the concept design for the new project on 14th Street between D and E Streets, S.E. Key features of the project are as follows.
- The project will increase the size of the Safeway from the 50,000 square feet to 60,000 square feet.
- There will be 329 apartments. The developer says that 70% of the units will be studio and one-bedroom apartments and 30% will be two bedrooms. A number of penthouse apartments will be set back on the roof. Rents will be calculated at a cost of approximately $3.25 a square foot – meaning that a small 500 square foot studio apartment will rent for between $1500 and $2000 a month. Ten percent of the units will be affordable under DC regulations, at 60% of AIM – average median income.
- Amenities for the residents are still being worked out but could include a club room, a dog run, a bike mechanic workroom, a fitness center, a dog washing station and a 6,000 square foot private aquatic court on the E Street side.
- All parking will be below grade and residents will not be eligible for Ward 6 Residential Parking Permits. Currently there are 155 parking spaces on the Safeway parking lot. This will increase to 194 parking spaces for the retail component of the project which will be accessed from 14th There will be an additional 170 spaces for residential parking, accessed from the alley – two separate entrances and two separate parking levels.
- The retail plan for the two first level 4500 to 5000 square foot spaces is still being developed. The developer hopes that a restaurant will be placed in one and noted that a day care facility for a number of growing families and the community is a possibility for the other.
- A new Starbucks on 14th Street will feature outdoor café seating.
- Safeway’s workforce of 150 current employees will be carried over into the new project with the addition of 15 to 25 new employees.
- The pharmacy will be relocated in the neighborhood while the project is under construction.
- The project’s name comes from Beckert’s Brewery which occupied the site in the early 20th Century. Prior to the brewery, there was a park at the location.
Folger Pratt hopes to break ground mid to late summer of next year, and plans for a 24 month construction period. The project will be built as a matter of right under current zoning, meaning there will be no Zoning Commission Review. Since it lies outside of the Historic District, there will be no Historic Preservation review.
Plans for the project will be posted shortly on the DC Office of Planning’s website where residents will have an opportunity to make comments addressed to the Office of Planning. https://planning.dc.gov/node/640482