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District Demolishes Temple Courts Housing Complex

Tuesday, December 2, 2008
Press Advisory for Immediate Release

(Washington, DC) – Mayor Adrian M. Fenty on Monday joined the District of Columbia Housing Authority to begin the demolition of Temple Courts, a long-troubled housing complex north of Union Station that will be transformed into part of the new $700 million mixed- income Northwest One New Community.

“We will not tolerate substandard housing in the District,” Mayor Fenty. “Our residents deserve safe and healthy neighborhoods and that is exactly what we are working toward here at Northwest One.”

The District bought Temple Courts in 2007 for $16.5 million. For years, the residential tower and adjacent low-rises had been plagued by high crime and its residents were not afforded the kind of educational, health care or job opportunities they deserved. Immediately after closing on the purchase of the property, at the request of the residents, the District helped relocate 172 families to new housing around the city.

By early 2010, the District and its development partners, the William C. Smith Cos. and the Jair Lynch Cos. expect to break ground on a the first phase of a $700 million mixed-income, mixed-use community that will eventually include almost 1,600 new units of housing, 200,000 square feet of office space, 40,000 square feet of retail space and a one-acre park. At least 570 units will be reserved as affordable units for buyers and renters. Every family who left Temple Courts will have an opportunity to return to the new community after the project is finished.

The Northwest One project will be built along both sides of North Capitol Street. The site is bounded by K Street to the south, New Jersey Avenue to the west and New York Avenue to the North.

Within the Northwest One neighborhood, the District is currently building the $47 million Walker Jones complex. It will include a 100,000 square foot K-8 school; a 20,000 square foot community recreation center; a 5,000 square foot library and new athletic fields and playgrounds. The project is expected to be complete in time for the start of the 2009-2010 school year.