A big, red bow was cut away from the door and the District of Columbia Development Corporation last Saturday proudly presented its first condominium project, the Wyatt Dougherty Condominium.
The totally rehabilitated three-story tan brick building, with rich brown accents around the windows and doors, contains 15 three-bedroom units designed and priced for moderate-income famiies. The units are heated by gas, and all have central air conditioning, wall-to-wall carpeting, dishwashers, garbage disposals, and enclosed bath-tubs with showers. Located at 1032-1040 6th St. NE, in the Capitol Hill Expansion Area, the units are priced at $18,000 to $18,850 apiece.
The condominium project was developed in conjuction with the D.C. Department of Housing and Community Development, which provided construction financing of $261,588.
"This represents the correct results of the vision of the redevelopment of the community," said C. Stevens Avery III, chairman of the board of directors of the D.C. Development Corporation, as he paid tribute to the late Wyatt Dougherty, whose name the condominium bears.
Dougherty was the former chairman of the board of the New Model Cities Economic Development Corporation, a predecessor of the D.C. Development Corporation. He was instrumental in the merger between the housing and economic development model cities corporations, which formed D.C.D.C. in 1974, and he served on the D.C.D.C. board until his death in 1975.
"I just wish he could see" the completed condominium, said Dougherty's sister-in-law, Inez Dougherty. "This was his dream."
Lorenzo Jacobs, director of the D.C. Department of Housing and Community development, called the condo inium opening "another step in the efforts toward revitalizing this neighborhood." The neighborhood as it stands today is mostly a mixture of row houses, some rehabilitated, some in total disrepair, and others showing signs of having been well cared for over the years.
City Council chairman Sterling Tucker, who attended the opening, said he had come to "show the support of the council" toward the city's first condominium development for moderate income families. Ward Two City councilman John Wilson also spoke at the opening.
"Anytime that anyone can see a structure made into something liveable," it is pleasure, Wilson said, and "even more of a pleasure" when the price is low enough so many people can afford to buy it. Then he pointed to some run-down row houses across the street from the new project, and said, "Now as soon as we get those fixed and some more fixed..."
The building which was rehabilitated was purchased by the housing department for $43.317 in 1975 from a private District-based corporation. Rehabilitation began in July, 1975, but construction was halted when funds ran out. Work began again last January, when additional funds became available.
Though the condominium units are designed for moderate-income families, anyone who wants to live there can buy, according to Adrienne Dungee Felton, public information officer, for D.C.D.C.
The units are priced below the going rate for three-bedroom condominiums elsewhere in the city, she said, because, "as a non-profit organization, we don't write any overhead costs (such as staff time involved or legal fees) into the sales price." And because the condominium project started as a demonstration project under the old model cities program, she said, it was eligible to receive federal demonstration funds. Those federal funds, which cover a portion of the actual cost of construction, lower the cost for buyers.
The condominium units are being sold by John R. Pinkett Realty, a private realtor.
No subsidy is available for purchasing the units, Felton said. "For a unit costing $18,000, it would take a down payment of $900," she said, and the estimated settlement cost is $1.100. The total monthly cost for such a unit, which would include the mortgage and mortgage insurance, a condominium fee of $32, and real estate taxes at existing assessments, would be $206.81, Felton said.
The $18.850 unit would require a down payment of $945, she said, and the estimated closing cost is $1.200. The total monthly cost, not including utilities, for the $18,850 unit is about $215.
Permanent 95 per cent financing for the condominium is being provided by Community Federal Savings and Loan Association, Felton said, though buyers can arrange for loans through the institution of their choice.
While D.C.D.C. has no definite plans at this time to develop any other condiminiums for moderate-income people, Felton said, such development will be considered if the Dougherty Condominium is successful. Two sits - one of which could be chosen for possible future condominium project - have been considered by the development corporation. The buildings are located on Columbia Rd. NW and Harvard St. NW, she said.