Mayor Bowser Breaks Ground on The Parks at Walter Reed
(Washington, DC) – Today, Mayor Bowser broke ground on The Parks at Walter Reed, a redevelopment project that will create 3.1 million square-feet of residential, office, and retail space in Ward 4. The project will also create 6,000 jobs, 2,100 units of housing, 432 of which will be affordable, and nearly one billion dollars in tax-generated revenue over 30 years. The Mayor was joined at today’s groundbreaking by Ward 4 Councilmember Brandon Todd, Ward 5 Councilmember Kenyan McDuffie, and representatives from the master development team Hines, Urban Atlantic, and Triden.
“In Washington, DC, we value inclusive prosperity, and through transformative development projects like this one, we can bring jobs, affordable housing, and economic opportunity to thousands of District residents,” said Mayor Bowser. “This effort has been years in the making, and now the future is bright for Walter Reed, Ward 4, and the entire community.”
This groundbreaking makes way for the first phase of infrastructure improvements, including: demolition of Building 2, the 1970s era hospital, which will set the stage for the development of a new town center; preservation of historic buildings; development of a new water main and other utility services; and landscape improvements.
“We are excited to break ground on Walter Reed because it means more local job opportunities and amenities at this catalytic development. Walter Reed is another positive signal of our growing economy and our emergence as a national leader in affordable housing, retail, hospitality and tourism,” said Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development Brian Kenner.
The Parks at Walter Reed will be phased over a 10-15 year period and will include:
- more than 2,100 units of rental and for-sale housing, including 432 affordable units of affordable housing;
- 150,000 – 250,000 square-feet of grocery-anchored retail;
- 185,000 square-feet of office space;
- a 200-key hotel and conference center;
- 30,000 square-feet of arts and cultural space;
- 116,000 square-feet of ambulatory medical care provided by Howard University Hospital;
- the District of Columbia International School (middle-high school) and the Latin American Montessori Bilingual School (elementary school); and nearly 20 acres of open space, community parks, and plazas.
“Walter Reed represents the single greatest economic development opportunity that Ward 4 and the District of Columbia will see for generations,” said Ward 4 Councilmember Brandon Todd. “Today’s groundbreaking represents a critical step forward in the redevelopment of Walter Reed, which will bring significant investment, jobs, and opportunity to Upper Northwest DC and the District as a whole.”
“The groundbreaking of The Parks at Walter Reed is an exciting day for residents across the District of Columbia. The jobs, affordable housing, retail, nearly 20 acres of parks, and other community amenities that will accompany the project will enhance residents' qualities of life and strengthen our local economy. As chairperson of the Committee on Business and Economic Development, this project supports the goal of making District neighborhoods thriving areas for residents to live, work, and play,” said Ward 5 Councilmember Kenyan McDuffie and Chair of the Council’s Business and Economic Development Committee.
The Walter Reed development project is the result of a successful community-driven process led by then-Councilmember Bowser and now by Mayor Bowser. The District and its partners convened over 100 public meetings throughout the planning process, which began in 2009 - a strong example of what can be accomplished when residents have a voice in shaping the future of their neighborhoods. In meeting the local and federal requirements necessary to acquire the Walter Reed site, the District underwent an extensive planning process, steeped in community engagement and resulting in the development of two Council-approved plans. The WRAMC Base Reuse Plan established the framework for mixed use development, and the WRAMC Small Area Plan provided land use and design guidance and a transportation analysis – all of which guided the zoning process.
In October, the U.S. Army and the Mayor held a ceremonial signing ceremony recognizing the official transfer of the land to the District. This followed the signing of the Walter Reed Development Omnibus Act of 2016, which authorized the District to acquire 66 acres of the former Walter Reed campus from the Army and begin development of a vibrant new mixed-use community.
The DC International School, a non-profit organization selected by the District to occupy space at the project, has already started renovation of one of the historic buildings for their new school. The school, which serves over 700 students, is scheduled to open for the 2017-2018 school year. Additionally, the new Fire and Emergency Medical Services (FEMS) Engine Company 22, also located on the Walter Reed campus, is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2017. The Bowser Administration broke ground on this new $12 million state-of-the-art fire station in 2015.