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We haven’t heard too much about Poplar Point for a while. The District selected Clark Realty to develop the land, which was supposed to include restaurants, retail, park space, and possibly a new stadium for D.C. United in development-starved Ward 8. Yesterday, the District announced that Clark was pulling out of the Poplar Point project.
A Washington Post article indicates that Clark needed more financial assistance for the project than originally anticipated. The city didn’t provide any flexibility.
Clark agreed to fund the construction in exchange for the right to sell off the developed parcels, a government source familiar with the deal said. In the wake of the economic meltdown, however, Clark asked the District to fund the construction and pay Clark a fee to act solely as the builder, said the source, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the talks were private.
“We had a specific agreement with specific deliverables,” said Neil O. Albert, the city’s deputy mayor for economic development. Clark “wasn’t able to meet that agreement for a number of reasons, including what I would speculate as an unwillingness to invest resources necessary to meet those milestones.”
According to the government’s press release, city officials are still working to develop the site:
The District will continue the planning process for Poplar Point and pursue avenues for site remediation and infrastructure development. In the near future, the District will issue a solicitation for vertical development partners for site. All development activities will continue to be contingent upon the outcomes of the environmental impact study process.
But it certainly feels like the project’s back to square one.
Image courtesy Clark Realty