(Washington, DC) Mayor Adrian M. Fenty on Thursday announced the District has selected Clark Realty as its development partner in transforming Poplar Point, 110 acres along the Anacostia River in Ward 8, into a $2.5 billion new world-class waterfront neighborhood.
“This is the largest economic development project the District has ever embarked on and we are making investment where it is needed most—East of the River,” Mayor Fenty said. “And in Clark Realty, we will have a partner that has shown tremendous creative vision, exceptional qualifications and the talent capacity to make this vision a reality.”
The District initiated a competitive process to select a development partner in August and submissions were due in November. The development teams that responded were evaluated on their vision, qualifications, financial capacity, and commitment to community engagement. The District also worked with a community advisory panel to refine the community interests in the project, which included a desire to incorporate a significant amount of retail early on in the process, respect the site’s connection to the surrounding community and create real employment, training and education opportunities.
Poplar Point is currently controlled by the federal government, but Congress has authorized the transfer of the site to the District government. As a condition of the transfer agreement, the District and Clark must initiative a federal environmental impact study to determine what uses can be accommodated at the site.
The District cannot finalize a development plan until the impact study is complete, but the development program will likely include hundreds of units of housing, new retail, hotels and office space – the site must include a 70-acre waterfront park. The District has required that at least 51 percent of the new jobs created as a part of the development go to District residents, the project must include affordable housing and 35 percent of the contracting dollars must be awarded to small and local certified businesses.
Poplar Point is one of the key sites in the District’s ambitious Anacostia Waterfront Initiative, which anticipates more than $10 billion worth of investment – new parks, trails, housing, retail, office space, cultural amenities and environmental restoration – along the river’s banks during the next 20 years.