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Reservation 13 Development Kicks Off With OK From Mayor Bowser

by Andrea Swalec — March 2, 2015 at 3:05 pm 0

(Updated at 3:10 p.m.) The longtime plan to transform the eastern-most portion of Capitol Hill got a big boost this afternoon.

Mayor Muriel Bowser signed an agreement to sell a 2-acre portion of Reservation 13 to developers that will build housing, retail and green space near the Stadium-Armory Metro station.

Plans for the land also known as the Hill East District Development stalled under Mayor Vincent Gray, ANC 6B Commissioner Brian Flahaven said. But Bowser is championing the development.

“The signing of this agreement will advance this catalytic project and transform an historic neighborhood, bringing more affordable housing to residents in the District of Columbia,” Bowser said in a statement. “This is a great day for a community that began planning Hill East’s revitalization nearly 12 years ago.”

Donatelli Development and Blue Skye Construction will build 354 housing units and 40,000 square feet of retail space east of 19th Street SE between extensions of Burke Street SE and Massachusetts Avenue SE, plans show. The residences will include 106 affordable units.

The development will extend Hill East all the way to the Anacostia River, Ward 6 Councilman Charles Allen said.

“Today is a big day for Reservation 13, the Hill East neighborhood and the entire city,” he said in a statement. “It’s an important step toward realizing the vision for and full potential of this corner of the city, as well as finally delivering on promises made to the Hill East community.”

The project will add needed retail and restaurants to Hill East, Flahaven said.

“To have new housing and new retail and residential options will help invigorate that part of the Hill and connect residents to the waterfront,” he said. “We’re really excited to have the mayor sign the [agreement] today.”

Flahaven said he was encouraged by Bowser’s show of support.

“The mayor actually touting this project is huge,” he said. “It shows there’s a new sense of how valuable this project is.”

The District is planning the redevelopment of 50 acres of Reservation 13, which spans 67 acres. Full redevelopment would depend upon the closure of the homeless shelter at D.C. General, as WAMU reported.

Construction on the Donatelli/Blue Skye project is set to begin next year and be complete in 2018. Additional requests for proposals will be issued for the next phases of the development.

Images via Office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development; Twitter/BFlahaven

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