D.C. Sold $5 Million Florida Avenue NW Property for $400,000

WCL Community Economic Development Law Clinic

Florida Ave Rendering for development at 965 Florida Avenue. Photo courtesy of http://www.fundrise.com.

On Tuesday, September 22, 2015, during the Pope’s visit to Washington D.C., Mayor Muriel Bowser issued her first major land-use development decision, to which no D.C. Council member publicly objected. The 1.45-acre land parcel located at 965 Florida Avenue NW in the Shaw neighborhood will become a 10-story mixed-use building featuring 353 residential units, of which 107 units will be reserved for medium and low income residents, and 39,291 square feet of retail space, a majority of which will be taken up by a Whole Foods. Two independent firms considering the proposed development valued the land parcel approximately $5 million dollars higher than its sale price of $400,000.

965 Florida Ave., NW, and surrounding area. Image via Google Maps. 965 Florida Ave., NW, and surrounding area. Image via Google Maps.

Bowser’s deputy mayor for planning and economic development, Brian T. Kenner, sought to justify the substantially reduced price by claiming…

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What is Community?

WCL Community Economic Development Law Clinic

mana childcare This article’s authors, clockwise from upper left, Lillian Bales, Whittney Smith, Adjua Adjei-Danso, and James Toliver, at the Mana Bilingual Child Development Center.

As we quickly learned during CEDLC orientation, community means very different things to different people. In orientation, we spent some time getting to know one another. During that time we discussed how community can be comprised of things such as geography, political affiliation, ethnic persuasion, religious group, hobbies, interests, etc. Each of us spoke about how we define ourselves in relation to our communities and how they become our chosen families.

To get a better sense of our local D.C. community, CEDLC Professors Brenda Smith and Dorcas Gilmore instructed the clinic students to explore the various wards of D.C. on a scavenger hunt. The hunt awarded points for finding things such as client locations, historic DC buildings like the Howard Theatre, attending a local farmer’s market…

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