This article incorrectly said that the Morris and Gwendolyn Cafritz Foundation agreed to provide a rent-free day-care center. The day-care center would not be rent-free.
D.C. zoning panel approves Fort Totten development
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
The Morris and Gwendolyn Cafritz Foundation received final approval Monday night from the D.C. Zoning Commission to move forward with its plans to transform the landscape of a Northeast Washington neighborhood by building a multimillion-dollar, transit-oriented development in Fort Totten.
The foundation plans to build Art Place and Shops at Fort Totten -- a project that will include housing, a grocery store, a children's museum, a senior center, and cultural and arts space -- on 17 acres it owns between the Fort Totten Metro station and South Dakota Avenue NE.
The project, which has sparked concern among some residents of foundation-owned apartments that will be demolished to make room for the development, received preliminary approval last month.
To receive final approval, the foundation had to submit information about the community benefits it planned to offer. It submitted a transition plan for tenants that assures them that they will be relocated during construction. The foundation would pay all moving expenses, and tenants would be provided with apartments in the new building. The tenants' rent would not change; the foundation would pay the difference between their current rent and the new apartments' rent, according to the letter.
The foundation also agreed to provide, rent-free, a day-care center, a possible library and 600 square feet of office space to the Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC5A).
Gwen Cofield Vample, co-chairman of the Lamond-Riggs Citizens Association development task force, said Monday that she was "disappointed not to see our requests in the final order." The task force had designated about 10 groups to receive money, including a couple of recreation centers and the Lamond-Riggs association.
"We're very pleased with the result," said Whayne Quin, an attorney for the foundation.
The commission was also scheduled to vote on a project proposed by Abdo Development. Developer Jim Abdo wants to build 825 residential units and 85,000 square feet of retail space on nine acres owned by Catholic University in Brookland. The commission deferred action until Monday.