Over the years, American University has maintained a close relationship with the area's real estate and building community. Recently, the university bought the 63-unit Glover Tunlaw apartments at 2725 39th St. NW for $1.3 million. It plans to use the apartments as dormatory space starting in the fall.
W. Donald Calomiris, a Washington realtor, AU alumnus and lecturer and chairman of the finance and business committee of the college's board, said that Shannon and Luchs, which handled the sale, donated part of its commission to the university. Financing for the purchase was arranged by a consortium of local savings and loan institutions.
When some tenants in the Glover Tunlaw protested eviction notices, Calomiris said, the university assigned its chaplain, Rev. R. Bruce Poynter, to work with them on relocations. "My reports indicate that some tenants are being given extensions on their leases and that the problems are being worked out," he added. Realtor Lillian Bowen, head of the Herbert Harvy office here and current president of the area Institute of Real Estate Management, will manage the apartments for AU.
Calomiris also said that the university recently broke ground on its uptown campus for a $7.8 million library, with alumna Irene Pollin (wife of developer Abe) working as chairwoman of the development committee. Developer-builder Morton Bender helped review the building plans and effect some economies for the library construction.
Serving on the AU board with Calomiris and others are area home builders Milton E. Kettler and Edward R. Carr, the latter an alumnus. "In many ways, AU has contributed to the education of many area persons in real estate and building and it's been a two-way street. My own personal goal, insofar as helping AU to progress in physical facilties, is to see a new athletic building constructed on the campus while I'm still able to walk there from my home, which is nearby," Calomiris said.
Conrad Cafrtiz has taken possession of the grand old 2029 Connecticut (Avenue NW), and has set up a firm that plans to convert the 23 large units in the 60-year-old, highly stylized building into condominium ownership. All of the apartments are larger than an average single-family house and some have as many as 5,000 (yes, 5,000) square feet of space. No tenants will be asked to move before Sept. 1. Brenneman Associates is doing the marketing. Prices will range from about $85,000 to $150,000, and a major rejuvenation-improvement program is planned. The architectural trim on the exterior of the building might be impossible to duplicate today. The quality of the decorative artistry is detailed, imaginative and almost museum-like. Meanwhile, tenants whose rents have been relatively low over the years will have to face ownership costs and condo fees beginning at $350 a month.
Earlier this week the 200,000th baby was born at Columbia Hospital for Women at 2425 L St. NW. The hospital itself was born in 1866 in a former mansion on Thomas Circle NW. In 1873, according to a researcher, Congress appropriated $25,000 to buy the pre-Victorian Maynard mansion as a site for the hospital. And, despite the downturn in the birth curve, there is talk of an addition being built on Columbia Hospital.