Change is coming to Washington Avenue, it's just a matter of when.
Over the last several years, there have been a number of large mixed-use projects proposed for Washington Avenue west of Broad Street, but none have yet materialized. From what we know, 1601 Washington has been sitting in legal hell for a couple of years. 2401 Washington got approval last year from the ZBA but is also under appeal. A project at 18th & Washington, originally planned and approved a few years ago, also hasn't happened. Even with these project delays, developers continue to look at this corridor, tantalized by the fact that it runs between Graduate Hospital and booming Point Breeze and hoping for a future with fewer forklifts and more bistros.
So it came as no surprise last night when developers came to SOSNA to present at an information-only meeting for the northwest corner of 25th & Washington. Today, the property is a mix of parking lot and billboard space.
Their presentation was very preliminary, but we do have some details. Their current plan includes a 6-story building at the corner of 25th & Washington which would include 79 apartments and 10K sqft of retail on the first floor. Also, they want to build a 5-story building with seventeen apartments on the other side of the parcel, fronting Grays Ferry Avenue. In between these buildings they're looking to build 17 townhomes, each with garage parking. Check it out:
The people at the meeting seemed like they were generally okay with the project, though there were the expected questions about height, density, and parking. If we had to guess, we'd wager that the project will go through some changes but SOSNA will ultimately support some version of the plan you see above and the ZBA will approve it. Of course, since the site is zoned for industrial use, any successful application to the ZBA will be vulnerable to appeal and could, like others on Washington Avenue, get held up for years. As we've said previously, comprehensive remapping of Washington Avenue would resolve many of these issues, but the political will hasn't been there as of yet to move this forward. Eh, maybe someday.