A Groundbreaking in Innovative Real Estate Development

Neighborhood Development Company (NDC) building for our future.

On July 13, 2023, a groundbreaking ceremony of a first-of-its-kind  Public Private residential development project at 3450 Eads Street (34Fifty) located just blocks away from the Anacostia River. This latest addition is a catalyst for change in Ward 7, a Passive House Institute Certified (PHIUS) affordable housing development in the River Terrace Community that will provide 49 homes, 20 percent will be family-sized housing. The project is truly green, with construction being completed with environmentally conscious technologies as well as offering the opportunity for eventual occupants to realize significant savings in utility costs and minimize their carbon footprint. 34Fifty represents innovation and cooperation on many levels.

An Opportunity Seized for Collaboration

Michaela Cancel, Senior VP of NDC, kicked off the ceremony by stating “We are very excited to have everyone here to celebrate this exciting milestone in the River Terrace community which has been 7 years in the making”. The ceremony continued as she welcomed guest speakers, strategic partners, the River Terrace community, and guests.

34Fifty was made possible through the support of a dynamic group of collaborators, both public and private, who contributed to the success of the development. From finance, design, community engagement, and vision, the parties worked together to nurture a concept from inception to the groundbreaking.

At the groundbreaking, Councilmember Vincent Gray, DHCD, DCHFA, Bank of America, and Bellwether Enterprise, were among the attendees celebrating the event. The gathering celebrated 34Fifty and its important contribution to housing and the impact on the economy in the River Terrace community. Speakers shared congratulations and appreciation for the team effort.

Vincent C Gray, Councilman Ward 7 stated, “Today we celebrate a big step forward in delivering more affordable housing to Ward 7, but also in setting a new standard for sustainable, energy-efficient living that contributes to affordability and reduces our collective impact on the environment”.

DHCD Director Colleen Green commented, “We’re not just investing in housing, we’re also empowering people and revitalizing neighborhoods with local and federal financial resources”.

Christopher Donald, Director DCHFA, provided some insight regarding Adrian Washington’s perseverance and thoughts on legacy and intentionality. He shared his sentiments, “Adrian has put on more people in affordable housing than anybody else that I know in this district and specifically people of color and women… when you think about legacy and having an impact and changing the fabric of our city and our business, there are not too many more people that will have an impact for generations to come… today I have so much joy and so much pride to be here … as we celebrate something magnificent, something beautiful and something transformative”.

Lawrence Di Rita, Market President Greater Washington DC and Public Policy Executive, Bank of America stated, “We’re pleased to partner with the city and the Neighborhood Development Company to bring a first-of-its-kind development to our neighbors in the DMV”.

Lundat Kassa, Vice President of Bellwether Enterprise, an affiliate of Enterprise Housing Credit  Investments. “We congratulate NDC for bringing much-needed affordable housing units to the growing Benning Road neighborhood in Ward 7. Along with NDC and the various financing partners on the project, BWE is proud to have navigated the current volatile financing markets to help bring the mission-rich project to a successful closing”.

NDC CEO & Founder, Adrian Washington had closing remarks, “This is the culmination of hard work and a lot of creative energy by a team of people that came together to deliver a truly innovative development for the community. No single person or organization could have achieved this accomplishment in this time frame, it was truly the work of many”.

Washington pointed out this project encompassed 3 important areas. First, the community, River Terrace.  It is great to see how communication, openness of the community and strong listening on the part of the NDC team built this strong partnership.

Second is sustainability. To be able to provide geothermal heating, cooling systems, solar panels, high performance windows, energy star and net-zero, benefits the planet, our residents and next generations.                       

Washington continued, “Finally, there is a lack of affordable housing— a tremendous gap and we have worked very hard to have a project that provides affordable housing for residents. 34Fifty will allow families to stay in the community and attract new families to live here- it reflects the community with family style housing, and we are so proud to lead this effort in Ward 7”.

Innovation in Design

In partnership with the architecture firm, Torti Gallas + Partners, NDC, and the other collaborators were intent on bringing a development that would integrate green, sustainable construction practices, and important employment opportunities, with the final outcome offering affordable housing that will enhance the community.

Neighborhood First- Work, Shop & Connect

Benning Market, an urban market concept, was created in direct response to the food desert in that area. The goals are to provide more healthy food options and entrepreneurial opportunities to the community and residents.  Next door will be the 3443 Benning Road development. This project will include Yeleen Beauty, the first commercial makerspace to support women and founders of color in the beauty industry; Industrial Bank, the largest minority-owned commercial bank in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area and the sixth largest African-American-owned financial institution in the country; and Accent Care, a national post-acute healthcare provider that offers home health, nursing, facility staffing, personal, and hospice care.

“A groundbreaking is always an important stop on the road to completion,” says Washington. “We were honored and pleased by the attendance of our collaborators and the community.” The 34Fifty project is set to open in mid-2024. If you would like to know more about 34Fifty, contact us today.

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