News

Prime site near Rhode Island Ave. Metro poised for a remake

Key story highlights

  • Boundary Cos. has acquired 900 Rhode Island Ave. NE with plans to eventually redevelop the property across from the Rhode Island Ave.-Brentwood Metro station.
  • The deal is the second land play for the Chevy Chase-based developer in about a month, following its deal for Children’s National Health System’sShaw clinic.
  • The site stands to benefit from momentum growing from other completed or planned projects in the area.

Boundary Cos. is positioning itself to remake a prominent corner near the Rhode Island Ave-Brentwood Metro station in Northeast D.C., where it hopes to tap into growing momentum from other projects in the area like Douglas Development Corp.’s Brookland Press apartments and MRP Realty’s Bryant Street.

The Chevy Chase-based developer closed Friday on its $16 million acquisition of 900 Rhode Island Ave. NE, a 33,350-square-foot office building on the northeast corner of Reed Street NE and Rhode Island Avenue NE. The building, acquired from Franklin & Rocky Properties LLC, is nearly fully leased to tenants including Jimmie Muscatello’s Washington Uniform Center.

The building is facing some turnover among its current office tenants in the near term, which Boundary hopes to re-let to other tenants. Further out, it plans to redevelop the site with up to 315,000 square feet of mixed-use once other multifamily projects in the area have had the chance to lease up. The property is across the street from Rhode Island Place, with retailers including T.J. Maxx and The Home Depot and catty corner to Rhode Island Row, with a mix of retailers including The Carolina Kitchen and Sala Thai.

 

“We just don’t feel it’s the right time, let the market mature a bit first,” said Boundary President John Wilkinson. “At this point in the cycle, we tend to buy covered land that we hold for future development.”

The sale comes about a month after Boundary made a similar play for Children’s National Health System’s Shaw clinic, which it also eyes for future development. Wilkinson said he is bullish on D.C.’s emerging neighborhoods, including Brookland, Brentwood and Eckington. Among the planned projects in the area is Eckington Place, a mixed-use project on Q Street it is developing with JBG Smith Properties (NYSE: JBGS) to feature a Brooklyn Boulders climbing gym.

Formed nearly five years ago with seed funding from The JBG Cos., Boundary has about 4 million square feet in its portfolio and focuses on value-add and opportunistic acquisitions. It has nearly completed a successful turnaround at 327 S St. NE, a former Nabisco bakery it bought with Foulger-Pratt Cos. in early 2017, re-leased to tenants including Stable Arts Collective and Salt & Sundry.

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