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The building on the left has room to grow. (UrbanAdvantage)

Via David Garber, here’s a rendering done by UrbanAdvantage for the corner of Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue and Good Hope Road SE in Anacostia, where a mural is being dismantled after the building behind it became dangerously unstable. The Department of Housing and Community Development, headquartered across the street, bought the corner lot early last year, and has been slow in figuring out what to do with it.

This mockup, I’ve got to say, isn’t encouraging: The corner should have something bigger than two stories to anchor that struggling commercial strip, preferably with as much housing as possible. It’s zoned C-3-A, which allows for building up to 65 feet. The analogous development is the Grays at Pennsylvania, which has a Yes! Organic Market on the ground floor, and leased up in a jiffy. On such a prominent site, why wouldn’t you fill your entire envelope?


UPDATE, 5:00 p.m. – Looks like not much will be happening with that property in the near term anyway. From a DHCD spokeswoman: “At this time, the Department does not have immediate plans for the property. We will be exploring temporary and permanent redevelopment options in the near future. DHCD works to evaluate plans to beautify the gateway entry.”

I must say, if the presence of a large city agency in a depressed area neither results in commercial spaces across the street being leased nor a well-positioned property having any plans for development a year and a half after the agency bought it, what good is it?