Originally published: DC.UrbanTurf.com | March 16, 2016 | by: Nena Perry-Brown
Redevelopment plans for St. Paul’s College include townhomes, workforce housing and a charter school. On Tuesday evening, Boundary Companies president John Wilkinson presented the firm’s concept to ANC 5E.
The 4.5-acre site around 3015 4th Street NE (map) is currently part of a network of properties owned and being sold off by the Paulists, whose seminarians study at St. Paul’s College. A 100,000 square-foot building there houses Paulist Fathers who lead the studies and those who are visiting the area. Due to declining numbers, the space has become too large and inefficient for their needs, and this is where Boundary Companies comes in.
Boundary intends to continue the site’s educational purpose via a partnership with area charter schools. Lee Montessori Public Charter School, which has outgrown its current space, will serve children in grades preschool through 5, while the Washington Leadership Academy will serve high school students. Workforce housing will also be on the site, as well as space for non-profit use. The development team plans to construct townhomes while preserving the low density of the site.
The college building itself has already been gutted and Boundary intends to seek landmark status, both for the structure and for the viewshed from 4th Street. The Paulist Fathers will relocate to a smaller building on the same site.
Wilkinson made it clear that the proposal is still very much in the preliminary planning phase, and that they intend to seek input from community and other interested civic parties and bodies at all stages of the approval process.
Although the presentation was purely informational, Commissioner Deborah Steiner informed everyone that she has been in talks with Wilkinson and Boundary Companies and is “very comfortable with what they are proposing.” She also noted that she has brought up several concerns that are important to neighbors on Chancellor’s Row, including the desire for a dog park to be incorporated into the site, restricting parking on 5th and 6th Streets, and the placement of a student drop-off area. Boundary is also in the early phases of having a traffic study done to ensure that any development has little impact on area residents. Commissioner Steiner plans to host a community meeting soon to allow for a more in-depth discussion between the developer and residents.