Monday, November 1, 2010

"District Condos": What's in a Name?

There was speculation when details came out a couple of months ago about what JBG might call their new development at the former Whitman Walker site at 14th and S. After all, they have a lot of options to choose from in a neighborhood like Logan/U Street that is so rich in history and historical figures. We've seen the region's history used before in names like The Ellington and the Langston Lofts. (It has also been completely forsaken with names like The Metropole and Union Row, but no matter.)


So, what eye-catching name did JBG ultimately decide on?

If you guessed "District Condos," you have very little imagination--but you'd be right. If you're like me, you were more than a bit perplexed about the rather mundane name that was bestowed on such a significant project. So I contacted JBG's project manager James Nozar for a bit of an explanation.

"We’ve read the many comments about the “District” name," he said. "It’s impossible to please everyone, but we tried to find a name that would market the neighborhood (your “district”), the building (how the building is different), and the end-user’s personal style."

OK, but still. The name seems a bit...boring.

"It is obviously an incredibly simple name, but that was the point," said Nozar. "We’re confident the overall project marketing campaign will work quite well and will resonate with those in the neighborhood."

Fair enough--I guess we'll wait for the marketing campaign to kick in before passing complete judgment on the name. Onto more important information, such as when demolition and construction might finally get underway. On this point, Nozar sounded a familiar refrain.

"(We) should be in a position to start demo in the next few weeks. We’ll start actual construction in late November or early December, which keeps us on our schedule of delivering units in Spring 2012."

When complete, the project will feature over 120 units and over 18,000 sf of retail along the western side of 14th Street between S and Swann streets.

8 comments:

Exlcblogger said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Another faceless and boring Shalom Baranes monstrosity. When will we learn and get some realy talent working our city instead of this been-there-done-that hack?

convexhull said...

Like "14 & You" is spectacularly innovative? throwing stones in glass houses...

convexhull said...

I do like the blog. It's just that I find this particular post a bit arrogant, that's all.

Mr. 14th & You said...

Point taken...but then again, I could have called this blog "District Blog".

Anyway, Mrs. 14thandYou named this, and as with most day-to-day decisions in the 14thandyou household, I wasn't really given a vote.

Anonymous said...

To Anonymous @ 9:46

The building is a more-of-the-same design (perhaps slightly better) but not all the blame is the architect. Some of the early proposals were pretty interesting and inovative but they had to be watered down to satisfy the historic preservation office. So some of your ire should be aimed at the HPO which insists on playing architect and has a narrow and unimaginative view of what the neighborhood should become.

Anonymous said...

I don't care what they call it. The homeless shelter up the street is called "McDonalds." Or is it "Taco Bell?"

Anonymous said...

I like the name of your blog and I also happen to live in Union Row...