The transformation of downtown Bethesda into a thicket of shops, restaurants and expensive condos and rental apartments is about to be replicated, although on a much smaller scale, as the residential and retail development adjacent to the planned Chevy Chase Lake Purple Line station at Connecticut Avenue and Chevy Chase Lake Drive gets underway.
Sales have begun at the Brownstones at Chevy Chase Lake, an EYA development of 62 townhouses adjacent to the Chevy Chase Lake shopping center, which includes a grocery store and a coffee shop. Within a few years, dozens of restaurants and shops are anticipated to open in the area surrounding the future Purple Line station.
“The area was rezoned three or four years ago for the Purple Line for greater density, so our plans include an 11-story apartment house close to Connecticut Avenue and to the station, with a half-acre park in between the apartment building and the townhouses,” says McLean Quinn, vice president of land acquisition and development for EYA. “Our first buyers are expected to move in sometime in June and will be able to walk to existing retail now and then take advantage of more retail in the future.”
Jay West, a buyer at Chevy Chase Lake who lives about a mile away in Chevy Chase Village, says he was attracted by the idea of living in a newly constructed townhouse and the location.
“I belong to the Columbia Country Club, so I’ll be able to walk to play golf if I want to,” he says.
West, who is downsizing from a single-family home with at least 5,500 square feet, says the living space of his new townhouse will be about 2,900 square feet.
“I definitely have to get rid of some things, but the living and dining area is wide open, the study is about the same as my office now and I’ll have a big roof terrace with a grill and a TV, so I expect living there to be very nice,” he says. “I’m mostly giving up a couple of bedrooms and a basement.”
Urban-inspired architecture: The townhouses have a base price of $1.475 million to $1.825 million. Adding living space to the loft level costs about $100,000, Quinn says. Thirteen of the 62 townhouses have been sold; 10 of the townhouses will be moderately priced units.
The community will include a 200-unit mixed-income apartment building. Also included is a half-acre public park with a fountain and a naturalized play area with a lawn, boulders and a granite slide. The apartment building is under development by EYA with the Housing Opportunities Commission of Montgomery County and will include 60 percent market-rate units, 20 percent workforce units and 20 percent moderately priced units.
“Townhouse owners will be able to join the apartment building’s fitness center in the future,” Quinn says.
The townhouses’ exterior style was inspired by brownstones in New York and Chicago. “We also wanted them to be grand and a little more traditional because of the Chevy Chase location,” Quinn says. “They’re each 22 or 24 feet wide and 46 feet deep, which makes them almost 3,000 square feet, which is large for a townhouse. If buyers add the living space on the loft level, the townhouse can be as large as 3,620 square feet.”
Extra bedroom available: The main level of each model has an open floor plan with an oversize kitchen island, a family room dining area and living area. Buyers can add a deck off the kitchen. Each townhouse has a private elevator that links the two-car garage and lower level to the main level, upper level and loft level. The townhouses have high ceilings, tall windows and hardwood floors.
Buyers can add an optional gas fireplace to the living area and add a bedroom and full bath to the lower level. The loft level can be configured entirely as a roof terrace or with a loft area, a bedroom and a full bathroom.
The Bradley model, with a base price of $1.545 million, has 3,134 finished square feet. This townhouse has a study on the lower level, a powder room, two closets and a foyer with a bench off the garage. The study can become a bedroom, and the powder room can be converted to a full bathroom.
The main level has an open floor plan with a powder room and a storage closet in addition to a kitchen pantry. The bedroom level has a master suite with two walk-in closets and a large bathroom with a glass-enclosed shower and a double-sink vanity. This level has two more bedrooms, a full bath and a closet with laundry equipment. Buyers can combine the two bedrooms into one larger bedroom if they prefer.
The roof terrace includes some outdoor cabinets and can be accessorized with a gas fireplace, a gas grill, an outdoor kitchen and a retractable awning. Buyers can add a powder room to this level or choose the finished loft layout.
What’s nearby: Residents can walk to a few restaurants and coffee shops, a grocery store and the Chevy Chase Library. Plans call for additional retail in the area.
The Capital Crescent Trail is also easily accessible from Chevy Chase Lake for residents to walk or bike to downtown Bethesda, Friendship Heights or Rock Creek Park. More ambitious bike riders can follow the trail to Silver Spring or Georgetown.
The Columbia Country Club golf course is less than a mile away.
Schools: Rosemary Hill Elementary, North Chevy Chase Elementary, Westland Middle, Bethesda-Chevy Chase High.
Transit: The neighborhood is served by several bus routes and is 1.6 miles from the Bethesda Metro station. The planned Chevy Chase Lake Purple Line light-rail station is adjacent to the community and will be accessible by a walkway underneath Connecticut Avenue.
3605 Chevy Chase Lake Dr., Chevy Chase, Md.
The townhouses are priced from $1.475 million to $1.825 million.
Features: The townhouses have hardwood flooring on the main level, stairs and bedroom level hallway. They also have nine-foot high ceilings, high-tech wiring, recessed lighting, granite or quartz kitchen counters, stainless-steel upgraded appliances, frameless glass-enclosed showers in the master bathroom, tile floors in the bathrooms, a rooftop terrace, a private elevator and a two-car garage.
Bedrooms/bathrooms: 3 to 5 / 3 to 5
Square footage: Approximately 2,923 to 3,620
Homeowner association fees: $193 per month
View models: Open daily 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Contact: Sales manager Philip A. Salin at 301-907-7500 or visit www.eya.com/chevy-chase-lake.