Things are moving fast in the Norris Square and South Kensington neighborhoods. To wit – less than four years ago, we drew your attention to 2000 N. 2nd St., a ten-story industrial building that was occupied at that time by a wicker wholesaler and was originally constructed as a silk factory in the early 1900s. At the time, we mused that this building would be a nice adaptive reuse for residential purposes, but we predicted that it would be some time before market conditions would allow for that to occur.
Not even one year later, we were back talking about this property, noting that an adaptive reuse was indeed in the cards, well ahead of our previously indicated schedule. E-Built had a plan to redevelop the tower into 80 apartments, but that wasn’t all! In addition, their plans called for a pair of four-story apartment buildings on either side of the tower, adding an additional 52 units to the equation. The project was being dubbed “The Gotham,” after the company that originally occupied the tower. Of course, when such a bold plan gets proposed at such a location, there’s no guarantee that it will move forward. And considering that the project also required a variance from the ZBA, nobody would have been surprised if the project never materialized.
But the Gotham did indeed move forward. Check out these images of the current state of affairs at the northwest corner of 2nd & Norris:
The bulk of construction work on the tower and the southern building are now finished, with some units occupied in both. The southern building includes some one bedroom units, some 2 bedroom units, and some entire townhomes, with all of those units offered as rentals. While one might think that the homes would be listed for sale, we’ll remind you that this property is located in a Federal Opportunity Zone census tract, and the developers have a significant tax incentive to hold onto the property for at least a decade. Even without the tax benefit, given the rapid appreciation of real estate in this part of town, this might still be a sound strategy.
Like we said, the southern building and the tower are both largely finished, but there’s more to come on the north side of the property. Another four-story building with 26 units is moving forward in the near future, with zoning permits pulled just last week. Once those units are complete, figure some time next year, this corner will have picked up roughly 13 dozen new units through a combination of adaptive reuse and new construction. All of this is happening much more quickly than we would have anticipated back in 2017, and it makes us wonder what else could be in store for this part of town and even further north in years to come.