D.C.-based developer District Growth has acquired a row of retail properties at 1000-1016 H St. NE in an $8.5 million deal posted in December to the D.C. Recorder of Deeds. The site will be converted to a 70-to-80 unit multifamily building, at a cost of about $30 million.
Bisnow reports that District Growth founder Sanjay Bajaj he will fund 40 percent of the project’s from his own resources to reduce financing costs. His business also has its own construction arm that can help alleviate the strain of rising construction costs, Bajaj was quoted as saying in the published report.
“We can’t control everything, but at least where it’s in our control we’re going to keep it as tight as possible and value engineer as much as we can,” he said.
Bajaj said he aims to break ground by the end of next year on the building, which would span five stories plus a penthouse, the website reported. “He said the retail storefronts it will replace — sitting between the H and 10th street NE intersection and the Douglas Memorial United Methodist Church — are all now vacant.”
Bajaj told Bisnow that = he considered incorporating ground-floor retail into his new building, but he ultimately decided to build only multifamily to maximize the number of units and reduce the project’s complexity.
“It’s not a huge site where I can have an anchor grocery store or something, and retail requirements don’t fit the site,” Bajaj said. “If this was a bigger site, yes, for sure I would’ve done (retail).”
The developer plans to build within the site’s existing zoning, reducing the friction in the entitlement process, so the main hurdle before he can break ground is financing the new construction project in today’s difficult capital markets environment, Bisnow says.
District Growth is currently building a 40-unit multifamily structure at 1358 Florida Ave. NE, and has “more development in the works along Northeast D.C.’s Rhode Island Avenue corridor,” Bisnow reports.