27 February 2006

H Street CDC Development at 4th and Rhode Island Avenue, NE

On the Bloomingdale Blog, I came across some info on the Truxton Circle site about the H Street CDC's proposed development at 4th and Rhode Island, NE.

I highly recommend the Truxton Circle site, even if you don't live in the immediate neighborhood - it has a great collection of resources, including links, stories and articles, an events calendar, and community resources. For members (you simply need to create a free account) there are discussion boards and a daily e-mail update. I'm sure I'm missing some details, since I've just started navigating the site myself, but what a wonderful community tool!


  1. Remember the line from "Paper Chase" -- "Good luck, you'll need it"?

    HSCDC is known for shitty quality. I use the word deliberately.

    In fact, my interest in urban issues, or at least my (over)involvement in such issues locally stems from living in the H Street neighborhood, seeing the (lack of) quality of their developments, and trying to figure out why things happened (and happen) the way they do.

    Basically, I am "blowback," in response to the HSCDC. For unsuccessful efforts to counter their execrable efforts at 8th and H Street NE, see this piece.

  2. Congrats on the mention in DC Blogs. And I like the direction you're going with this. It seems like this is what you wanted to do all along. Hope you get some good feedback from people in your community about it.

  3. @ Richard: Does this mean we'll get an informed piece on this in "Rebuilding Places?" Pretty please?

    @ matt w: Thanks! The one day I don't check DC Blogs first thing (and did you see your mention a few days back? I just thought I'd lay off being the psycho blogger who noticed you everywhere for a bit)....Now, if I can keep the posting momentum going, I may ask KOB to bump this up to "DC Neighborhood Blog" status.

    @ you both: We will meet in person one day. Lord only knows what day that is....

  4. I don't know if I'll really look at this project. They are working with Paradigm Development. Paradigm's building at 5th and Mass. NW is butt-ugly, but in their losing design for the Wax Museum site, they produced something of quality, at least based on the renderings.

    Frankly, if you could get them to just use the same basic design (much bigger than for the Ward 5 site) I probably wouldn't complain much at all.

    HSCDC hasn't produced one quality building in my opinion, and the improvements in the H Street corridor that have come of late really have absolutely nothing to do with their investments in the corridor (two office buildings, their headquarters, three sets of rowhouses) or DHCD's for that matter (H Street Connection).

    It's a damning of the "power" of community development and community development block grant funding. Yet the HSCDC is one of the most successful CDCs in the city in terms of actually really building and completing construction projects.

    It's just too bad that their buildings diminish the quality of the built environment, rather than contribute to its improvement.

    Still, based on projects such as theirs, had there not been a marginal increase in demand for urban living, DC might still suck, and you'd be living in the suburbs still... :^)

    So I don't expect very much from the development, but I absolutely do not have the time to bird dog it. I did want to go to that ANC meeting last week to hear about it, but I am way overburdened as it is...

  5. Same architects as Sursum Corda! How could it go wrong!?!


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