The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Town Square | New Rockville rentals geared to seniors

(Courtesy of JP2 Architects)
Placeholder while article actions load

Federal Realty and Smart Living 360, a development and operating company that specializes in creating new communities with older adults in mind, recently began construction of the Stories at Congressional Plaza in Rockville.

The 48-unit upscale apartment complex, at 1626 E. Jefferson St., has amenities and features geared to the interests of older adults, although it is a multi-generational building. The apartment will be part of a community shopping center anchored by the Fresh Market, the Container Store and Last Call by Neiman Marcus and is close to other amenities such as the Music Center at Strathmore, the Kennedy Shriver Aquatic Center, the Metro and Pike & Rose, a mixed-use development.

The Stories will have an on-site concierge or “co-author” to connect residents to services, programs and wellness options. The pet-friendly apartment will have a fitness center, a clubroom with catering kitchen, flexible office space and outdoor gardens with patios and grill stations.

The one-, two- and three-bedroom homes will have open floor plans, high-speed wireless Internet access and universal design features such as low-profile step-in showers, glare-free lighting and slip-resistant tile. Rent will range from $2,500 to $3,700 per month.

The Stories is anticipated to be complete in the fall of 2015 and will begin taking priority list deposits in January and reserving units in spring of next year.

For more information, join Federal Realty and Smart Living 360 on Dec. 10 at 7 p.m. for a workshop, “Being Purposeful in Your Dividend Years,” at the Federal Realty headquarters in Rockville. Additional information is available at, or by calling 301-289-7573.

Sales start on Atlantic Plumbing condos

Sales have begun for the one- and two-bedroom condos by the JBG Companies and Walton Street Capital at the Atlantic Plumbing mixed-use development at 2030 8th St. NW in the District’s Shaw neighborhood.

The building, designed by New York-based Morris Adjmi Architects, has 62 residences with more than nine-foot-high ceilings and floor-to-ceiling windows framing panoramic views of the city. Interior design finishes pay homage to the building’s commercial past as a plumbing supply warehouse.

The units, priced from the upper $300,000s to $1.9 million, feature contemporary designs with natural finished hardwood flooring, custom cabinetry and stainless-steel appliances. The bathrooms will have floor-to-ceiling porcelain tile surrounds.

Building amenities include ground-floor restaurants, public and private rooftop terraces, a fitness center and a resident’s lounge.

The units are being sold by appointment only, by calling 202-792-8880 or e-mailing For floor plans, a list of standard features and renderings, go to

Homeowners’ six favorite floor plans

While homebuilders research buyer tastes and adjust their floor plans accordingly, James Roche, chief executive of, a provider of online home designs, tracks the choices buyers make when opting to buy a floor plan online.

According to Roche, the top six changes in floor plan trends over the past 10 years include:

1. Nearly everyone wants a combined living/dining/kitchen space.

2. The dining room is melting into the great room and is no longer defined as a separate space.

3. There’s an increasing interest in extra bedrooms that function as in-law suites, which means the room has its own bathroom and is easily accessible, usually on the first floor, and sometimes with a separate outside entry. These rooms may be for a parent, a caretaker or an adult child returning “to the nest.”

4. Porches and sheltered patios are getting larger to accommodate outdoor living and entertaining with built-in barbecues, outdoor fireplaces and outdoor living room furniture.

5. People are building a main house now but at the same time are buying plans for a second unit or an in-law unit so they can build it later.

6. Buyers want garages with bonus or living space above to accommodate in-laws, parents or adult kids.

To see examples of popular floor plans, go to

New listing Service for newly built homes

Looking for a newly built home? BuzzBuzzHome has recently entered the D.C. area market with a comprehensive listing of new homes in the area.

While other databases include some new construction housing, this site focuses solely on new developments that are recently completed, under construction or planned. Each listing has renderings or photos, an estimate of the completion date, the number of units and whether sales have started.

If sales have begun, you can find information about the size of units, prices and when the model homes are open.

The site’s Market Snapshot shows you how many units are under construction in the region, the type of housing in the area and the average list price per square foot over time.

For more information, go to

Michele Lerner is a freelance writer. To pass on a tip or news item, contact us at and put “Town Square” in the subject line.