Your social-climbing friends may be impressed by your change-of-address card if you take an apartment in the building planned for the banks of the Anacostia River.
But will they be disappointed when they show up for your housewarming — or worse, get lost? And won’t it be a hassle picking up Barack Obama’s misdirected mail?
Such are the exotic concerns facing future residents of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue Southeast. You heard that right: 1600 Penn. Same as the White House — almost.
The developers who hope to break ground on the 77-unit building early next year say they were drawn to the lot bordering Barney Circle by its river views and proximity to a Harris Teeter and the Potomac Avenue Metro station. But the potential for a sexy address did not hurt.
“When we purchased the lot, it’s something we eyed,” said Greg Selfridge, a partner at Novo Development which owns several hundred units in the D.C. area and plans to build its first ground-up complex on the site, now occupied by a used-car lot. And the future address, already approved by the city, is perfectly legit, he argued: “It sits on the 1600 block, it sits on the right side of the street — there’s no reason not to call it that.”
Selfridge said that Novo already has zoning approval for the apartment but still needs to apply for a building permit. It hopes to welcome tenants — into one-bedrooms starting at $1,200 and two-bedrooms up to $2,800 — by early 2015. Cheaper and smaller, to be sure, than the executive mansion on Pennsylvania Avenue’s Northwest quandrant — but, hey, do they have a dog-washing station there? Novo plans one for Southeast.
The basic address is more common than you might think elsewhere in the country. It belongs to a city sewage plant in Salem, Ohio, an office building in Charleston, W.Va., an apartment complex in Miami Beach, a church school in Dallas. But “after all these years,” boasted Selfridge, “you’ve never seen another 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington, D.C.”
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