Advertisement

Advertisement

Homeless Shelter Services to return to former Gospel Rescue Ministries buildings

In 2013 the Rock Creek Property Group acquired 808-810 5th St NW from Gospel Rescue Ministries for a sales price of $5.95 million. RCPG’s intent was demolish a portion of both buildings and build an eight-story rear addition for a new 50+ unit condominum development. According to the Washington Business Journal, challenges arose with the Historic Preservation Review Board (HPRB) and RCPG has elected to execute a 20 year lease agreement with the District. It will once again be operated as a homeless shelter as it had been for the prior 75 years. The Department of Human Services plans to use the first four floors to house women in the “temporary shelter model.” The fifth floor will contain units for women in the District’s transitional housing program.

810 5th Street NW

Gospel Rescue Missions building at 808-810 5th Street NW

[Read more...]

Be the first to like.
SociBook del.icio.us Digg Facebook Google Yahoo Buzz StumbleUpon

City Tap House: Go for Happy Hour, Stay for Dinner

citytaphouse_logoWith 40+ beers on tap, City Tap House is the perfect place for a craft beer fan. But that’s not all! Situated in Chinatown across the street from City Center at 9th and I Streets NW, they are in a great location. Hit the bar before for their 5 O’Clock club happy hour,  stop in for one of their Daily Supper specials off their dinner menu or enjoy brunch with bottomless beermosa, mimosa & bloody mary cocktails for $18.

The rustic wood walls reclaimed from a Pennsylvania farm give diners a cozy atmosphere reminiscent of a ski lodge. TVs are dotted around playing sports, but it’s unobtrusive enough that you can have a nice meal without feeling like you are in a sports bar. Perfect place to bring a date and still check the scores. There is room for larger parties to dine without feeling crowded and a stone walled private dining room that can be partitioned for smaller groups.

citytaphouse_bar
[Read more...]

4 people like this post.
SociBook del.icio.us Digg Facebook Google Yahoo Buzz StumbleUpon

Flight Wine Bar to Open this Saturday

Please see the Press Release below about the opening of Flight, a wine bar near 6th & H Streets NW, that will open this upcoming Saturday January 18th.



Flight (Wine Bar)

777 6th St NW
WebsiteE-mailFacebookTwitter

SWATI BOSE AND KABIR AMIR TO OPEN FLIGHT IN PENN QUARTER ON JANUARY 18

60-seat wine bar will offer over 70 selections of wines by the glass with
Mediterranean-influenced cuisine from Chef Bradley Curtis

Flight, a wine bar owned and operated by husband and wife team, Swati Bose and Kabir Amir, will open at 777 6th Street, NW, Washington, DC on January 18, 2014. Bose, general manager and beverage director, together with Amir, has selected an approachable wine list featuring over 70 selections with 30 by the glass options. The extensive list of wines offers familiar varietals from boutique producers as well as labels from lesser-known regions around the world. The 60-seat wine bar will also serve shareable plates influenced by Executive Chef Bradley Curtis’ New England upbringing and love for Mediterranean flavors. Edit Lab at Streetsense, designers of Daikaya and Red Hen, among others, designed the space.

Interior photo of Flight Wine Bar; photo by Jeff Martin via Urbandaddy

Interior photo of Flight Wine Bar; photo by Jeff Martin via Urbandaddy

[Read more...]

3 people like this post.
SociBook del.icio.us Digg Facebook Google Yahoo Buzz StumbleUpon

Travel Channel to film at Chinatown Coffee on July 24

The Travel Channel, on a mission to introduce the world to popular food trucks and quick-serve food vendors across the U.S., will be taking to the streets of DC on Tuesday, July 24 to meet and film some of DC’s favorite food truck crews.

Their final stop of the day? Chinatown Coffee Co. for a Happy Hour event with the Fojol Brothers food truck!

Join us this TUESDAY, July 24 from 6:30-8:00pm for Happy Hour drink specials – $3 beers & a great selection of wine and absinthe – and some of the best food on wheels.

The truck will be parked on the corner of 5th and H Street NW . So grab food from Fojol and bring it inside to eat, drink, and make your international TV debut!

Make sure to follow us on Twitter (@ChinatownCoffee) for event updates.

Visit www.chinatowncoffee.com for more information.

1 person likes this post.
SociBook del.icio.us Digg Facebook Google Yahoo Buzz StumbleUpon

Walgreens at 7th & H to go Upscale

In early January Capital Business shared the list of prospective retailers Douglas Development had lined up for their 7th and H development. At tonight’s MVSNA meeting Paul Millstein (from Douglas) confirmed that Walgreens and Yo! Sushi were on board but did not confirm Panera Bread.

Perhaps more insightful was Millstein’s explanation of how this would not be a typical Walgreens. This Walgreens will be modeled after a ‘super store’ concept launched in Chicago at State and Randolph this January. The 25,000 sqft operation will occupy three floors including a basement level and aims to be as much a health and daily living store as a pharmacy. Expect upmarket fresh and pre-packaged foods, wine, a bakery, coffee shop and services including an on-site doctor and a nail salon on the second floor.

The embedded video showcases a tour of the new Chicago store. The ETA for this new Walgreens is the Nov/Dec timeframe.

4 people like this post.
SociBook del.icio.us Digg Facebook Google Yahoo Buzz StumbleUpon

Capital Business reports on retail coming to 7th & H

Jonathan O’Connell of Capital Business reports that Yo! Sushi, Walgreens and Panera Bread will assume retail storefronts at the new project on the NE corner of 7th and H NW from Douglas Development and McCaffery Interests.

R2L Architects rendering of 7th & H project via DCMUD

These retailers strike me as a little uninspired given the prominence of the corner. But it was a given CVS or Walgreens was going to make a major play for the space. Panera one block from Corner Bakery feels very redundant tho…

Be the first to like.
SociBook del.icio.us Digg Facebook Google Yahoo Buzz StumbleUpon

Response to Chinatown Disneyfication

Last month I highlighted the Citypaper’s posting on the “Disneyfication” of Chinatown. Among the items the author described as superficial Disneyfication were converting the usually-blue wayfinding signs to ornamental red, installing Chinese inspired lampposts and benches, designing bike racks and crosswalks in the shape of stylized dragons, adding a “Chinese-themed” sculpture to Chinatown Park, the translation of street signs into Chinese characters, commissioning “Chinese-inspired” murals for blank commercial storefronts, and installing more decorative Zodiac pavers.

I’ve wanted to dedicate a post to respond to that argument. It is increasingly difficult for me to find time for longer posts but this is a good one to end the year 2011 on…

I disagree with a blanket statement that any Chinese theme to the streetspace improvements is automatically farcical or superficial Disneyfication. I’ve visited other cities with successful public spaces that integrate the heritage of the past into the redesigned streetscape of the future. Pittsburgh for instance has a massive old steel mill furnace repurposed as public art in a plaza. That is meaningful and interesting. In contrast think about 5th & K in the Mount Vernon Triangle. The site of City Vista once was home to a beautiful building that served as a central market and later a convention hall. How great would it have been if the public art integrated at 5th & K payed homage to that heritage of the site? Instead we installed abstract twisted metal sculptures named Lift Off and Inspiration that aren’t really embraced. I think an opportunity for truly great placemaking art was missed in favor off somewhat generic abstract art.

Yellow Thing

No to Chinese inspired design for Chinatown? Must we always resort to safe generic abstract art like Lift Off in MVT

I believe the Chinatown theme can be done successfully in moderation and with a tasteful eye. Tasteful may be too much to expect of from government (fingers crossed) but moderation is possible. First and foremost I think it is important to limit the boundaries of the Chinatown theme. I would recommend 5th to 7th east-west and I to H (including Chinatown Park) north to south. In my mind it shouldn’t spill into Gallery Place or office blocks that are completely devoid of historic fabric buildings. I’m in favor of having the red wayfinding signage. Installing Chinese inspired lampposts, benches, bike racks and crosswalks seems reasonable to me but I would strongly favor using mostly Chinese motif geometric patterns rather than overdoing the dragons. Zodiac pavers also would be a welcome – I feel DC doesn’t utilize special pavers nearly as much as they should for a place of it’s stature. Chinatown park would benefit from a red iron fence with a Chinese geometric pattern, new lamp posts, some nice pavers for the paths through the park and a statue or fountain of some kind. I’m not familiar with all the proposed elements in the Office of Planning recommendations but the one I heard about that I’m not in favor of would be putting the street signs in Chinese.

These enhancements could up the ante for Chinatown and elevate it to a different level. Of course Chinatown is doing well as-is so it’s debatable as to whether upgrades are necessities. If I had to prioritize only Chinatown Park is in desperate need of improvement.

3 people like this post.
SociBook del.icio.us Digg Facebook Google Yahoo Buzz StumbleUpon

Chinatown Disneyfication?

Lydia DePillis of the Washington City Paper argues that much of the next wave of planned public realm enhancements to Chinatown is nothing more than superficial Disneyfication.

Among the items she singles out as superficial are converting the usually-blue wayfinding signs to ornamental red, installing Chinese inspired lampposts and benches, designing bike racks and crosswalks in the shape of stylized dragons, adding a “Chinese-themed” sculpture to Chinatown Park, the translation of street signs into Chinese characters, commissioning “Chinese-inspired” murals for blank commercial storefronts, and installing more decorative Zodiac pavers.

What are your thoughts? Do you support the improvements? Is it all too superficial? Or do you think some improvements make sense but the incorporation of dragons may be taking it farther than it needs to go?

Be the first to like.
SociBook del.icio.us Digg Facebook Google Yahoo Buzz StumbleUpon