WASHINGTON, September 20, 2022–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Lowe, in partnership with FLGA and Davenport Group, announced today that it has secured a 99-year ground lease from Howard University for an approximately 1.85-acre property in Washington D.C.’s Shaw neighborhood where it plans to construct an approximately 525,000-square-foot, ten-story building that will include up to 500 residential units, approximately 27,000 square feet of retail space and 246 below-grade parking spaces. The partnership is undertaking the development in collaboration with USAA Real Estate, with which Lowe also developed the recently completed Park + Ford, a 435-unit office-to-residential conversion, and the National Science Foundation headquarters building, both in Alexandria, VA.
The partnership will develop the properties, currently used as parking lots for Howard University, located at 2251 Sherman Avenue NW and 2047 9th Street NW. The transaction is the latest in a series of property transactions undertaken by Howard University that will contribute significant new housing along with a mix of retail, office, hotel and entertainment venues to the upper Shaw neighborhood.
“We are thrilled to partner with another best-in-class team that will build on the momentum of our Campus Master Plan,” said Howard University President Wayne A. I. Frederick. “This project will deliver much-needed housing and retail space that will serve Howard students, faculty, staff and visitors, as well as our neighbors in the community. Through this initiative, we are proud to support the district’s goal of building 36,000 new homes by 2025 to combat rising housing costs.”
The transaction continues Howard’s strategy to utilize long-term ground lease structures that preserve the institution’s real estate portfolio while allowing it to reinvest in its academic facilities. The Lowe team’s development is part of the larger Howard University approach to repositioning portions of its real estate in accordance with the District of Columbia’s DUKE Framework, a plan to restore this historic community as a cultural destination. Howard currently refers to this area as the Duke District, a nod to the framework and this neighborhood’s past as the heart of an important economic, cultural, social and institutional center of a proud and accomplished African-American community, many of which were affiliated with Howard University and Hospital.
“Our team is working closely with Howard University to develop and execute plans and programs for the parcel that are consistent with the University’s mission to be a supportive resource for and contributor to the surrounding community, with an emphasis on diversity and inclusivity,” said Mark Rivers, Executive Vice President, Lowe. “This includes a robust set of mission-oriented objectives to provide Howard students with exposure and opportunities for careers in real estate, architecture, engineering and hospitality management as well as opportunities for minority-owned firms to participate in the development of the project.”
The project is envisioned as a modern apartment community with units ranging from studios to larger two-bedroom with den floor plans that have grown in popularity due to the hybrid work model adopted by many employers since the onset of the pandemic. Approximately 40 units will be designated as affordable housing, with the potential to increase that number to 60 units. Among the community’s planned amenities is a club room, fitness center and rooftop patio and pool and inviting gathering spots to enjoy the area views of downtown Washington D.C.
A key project component is the creation of a 25-foot-wide public plaza fronting the future extension of W Street that will provide an activated gathering space, including amenities for Howard University community members, and a connection between Howard University and the burgeoning north Shaw neighborhood. The project will also benefit from easy access to public transit with Metrorail and bus stops close to the property.
JLL represented the partnership in securing bridge financing for the land transaction from Eagle Bank. Construction is anticipated to commence in Fall 2023.
Lowe established its Washington, D.C. area office in 1980 and has been an active developer of commercial real estate throughout the region. Among Lowe’s signature projects in the area are The Hepburn, ultra-luxury apartments developed adjacent to the famed Washington Hilton Hotel where the firm completed a $150 million restoration; development of the 700,000-square-foot National Science Foundation headquarters building in Alexandria, Virginia; CityVista, a transformative mixed-use development in the Mount Vernon Triangle area of Washington, D.C.; and the recently completed Park + Ford, the adaptive-reuse of the former three-building Park Center office complex into a 435-unit contemporary apartment community with 115,000 square feet of office in Alexandria, Virginia.
Los Angeles-based Lowe, formerly known as Lowe Enterprises, is a leading national real estate investment, development and management firm. Over the past 50 years, it has developed, acquired or managed more than $32 billion of real estate assets nationwide as it pursued its mission to build value in real estate by creating innovative, lasting environments and meaningful experiences that connect people and place. Lowe currently has more than $2.5 billion in commercial real estate projects in the pipeline or under development. In addition to its Los Angeles headquarters, Lowe maintains regional offices in Southern California, Northern California, Charleston, Denver, Seattle, and Washington, D.C. Lowe’s hospitality subsidiary, CoralTree Hospitality, operates numerous hotel and resort properties across the US. Lowe’s commercial property operations subsidiary, Hospitality at Work®, brings hospitality inspired-property management service to office buildings nationwide. Lowe’s affordable housing subsidiary, Concord Communities, is actively developing and redeveloping quality affordable communities in the metropolitan Washington, D.C. area.
For more information visit www.Lowe-RE.com www.hospitality-work.com www.coraltreehospitality.com www.concordcommunities.com
FLGA is a 100% Minority-owned, Washington DC-based real estate development and investment company with a unique blend of public and private sector experiences and successes in the areas of mixed-use and urban lifestyle development. The Company was established in 1995 by Fred L. Greene after serving as the Director of Planning for the District of Columbia from 1984 to 1992. The professionals that make up FLGA have developed and/or participated in the development of approximately 2 million square feet of commercial development across all major asset classes including multifamily residential, office, retail and hotel. Presently, FLGA has more than $900 Million in commercial real estate projects in the pipeline or under development.
For more information, visit www.flgallc.com.
Formed in 2020, Davenport is a boutique real estate and investment advisory firm focused on acquiring value-add and opportunistic real estate in and around the DC Metro area without limitation in multi-family, retail, office and industrial asset classes.
For more information, visit davenportdc.com.
About USAA Real Estate
Along with its affiliate companies, USAA Real Estate invests across the risk spectrum for a global client base, managing over $36 billion in net assets under management within a diversified portfolio across North America and Europe. USAA Real Estate provides strategic equity and debt capital, including to capitalize on the accelerating demand for technology-driven real estate assets, to meet the critical need for housing solutions, and for other market and capital structure opportunities exhibiting compelling risk-return characteristics. For more information, visit usrealco.com.
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