Thursday, November 16, 2017

The Bard: Act II

More than a year after withdrawing a PUD application for The Bard development at 501 I Street due to neighborhood opposition, the development team of Shakespeare Theatre Company (STC) and Erkiletian recently submitted a new PUD, making several changes to their plans in the process. The site is currently zoned R-3 and the development team through the PUD process is requesting a change of zoning to MU-4. 

The current plan calls for a five-story building (four stories plus a habitable penthouse) and a five-story annex structure on the northeast portion of the site. The main building is U shaped and will contain 29,425 square feet on the first level and below-grade for STC administrative space, four rehearsal spaces, a costume shop, space for educational activities, as well as five actor housing units. On the upper floors, there will be 85 rental apartments. In the annex building, there will be five two-story duplex units for STC fellows on the lower floors and 15 units on the upper floors for STC actors. Within the project, approximately 11,400 SF of space will be set aside as affordable housing under inclusionary zoning, at 60% and 50% of AMI. At least one of the IZ units will be a three-bedroom unit. Additionally, two units will be set at 40% of AMI for the first 10 years of the project and will be reserved for teachers or staff at Amidon-Bowen Elementary or Jefferson Academy. 

There will be two entrances to the STC-controlled space, one on 6th Street and another on I Street. Meanwhile, the main residential entrance to the building will be on I Street. Actor housing units will have entrances on 6th Street in order to maintain a residential character on the street. Along I Street, there will be public art – including art panels and murals. Parking will be provided for 39 vehicles on-site in a below-grade garage as well as at least two electric charging stations, and 15 off-site spaces. There will also be 70 bicycle parking spaces. 

According to the PUD application, the following public benefits will be offered: 
Free performances aimed at young audiences and development of long-term curriculum for Amidon-Bowen and Jefferson Academy Schools; free performance tickets and scholarships and tuition discounts to Camp Shakespeare and Adult Master Acting classes; support for community arts programming; and public access to use assembly spaces/conference rooms within the Project for community meetings. 
The developers intend to work with ANC 6D to refine the list of public benefits. If approved, construction is expected to start in 2018 and finish in 2020. 

Renderings courtesy of Shalom Baranes Associates


Mike said...

Affordable housing, coordination with local schools, performances for young people - what is not to like!

It is well past time for the ANC to get behind this very worthwhile project. Make it happen!

Marc said...

Seconded, actually. And it's only one story above the existing residential zoning level. ONE. I am pretty sure this is tight enough that if you removed that extra story, the project just wouldn't make economic sense ot them anymore and they'd just pull out, which would be a stupid waste of the space if it ended up just being residential-only as a result, with no community benefits like meetings rooms, tuition remissions, tickets, et al. It's time.

AMK said...

Exciting news -- hope the plan moves forward!