UPDATE: Thanks to all of our loyal readers, the article below has helped spur the busiest day for the Rhode Island Ave Insider EVER! Well over
900 1,100 1,600 2,800 3,300 people have viewed this article! Keep reading!! The second busiest day: February 7’s article on…you guessed it: Rhode Island Row! This shows any potential developer/retailer…the interest for redevelopment is here!
by Greg Roberts
The Friends of Rhode Island Ave board of directors headed to the still under construction, Rhode Island Row this Sunday to take a tour of the development and look at the apartment portion of the project. This mixed-use, transit-oriented development located at the Rhode Island Metro station, has not yet been wholly completed yet but it is starting to get their letters of intent signed for the retail sections (more on that later).
The tour started next door in the parking lot of the TJ Maxx, where we met with Caroline Kenney, development manager with Urban Atlantic, co-developer of Rhode Island Row (along with joint venture partner A&R Development Corp.). The meeting in this parking lot allowed the group to get a better view of the development and learn more about the progress of this new development. This viewpoint allowed us to see the already constructed south side of the development that includes the ground-level retail and residential units over that. The new parking garage on the back of this building is a restricted garage for the building’s residents. The north side building (closest to Rhode Island Ave) is still under construction including the parking garage which will be hidden within the development. The entrance to this garage, which will be for residential and public parking, is located off of the Main Street.
The group was then led to the south building’s top floor to look at the residential model units and various other sized apartments. I was, as was the rest of the group, quite impressed with the units. The floors in the units varied from hardwood-look resilient flooring (both dark and light) to a very interesting stained concrete floor. There are three sizes of apartments (1, 2, and 3 bedrooms) available and the development has 55 affordable units and 219 market priced units. The market units vary in price as well, from as low as $1,700 for a 1-bedroom up to $3,500 for the 3-bedroom. Up to 10 units have already been occupied and are being used. Below are some of the photos from the model units.
The retail units of the development are still not completely leased but they are moving along. The largest unit, located on the north side building at the corner has been announced as a CVS Pharmacy. Next to the CVS is a 4,500sq.ft. unit that the developer believes is an ideal location and would like to lease it out to a restaurant; negotiations are currently underway with a local restauranteur but a lease has not yet been signed. Ms. Kenney is confident that she could get a chain restaurant to go into that space but they would rather the space be a unique restaurant (and I am sure we can all agree!). While several letters of intent have been executed, there are not signed leases for the other spaces so Caroline cannot say who they are talking to. She assured me, though, that she will share any new tenants with the Insider as they happen! One tenant she was excited about talking to will be a DC government agency but she could not elaborate at this time on which agency, just that it will be a great traffic driver for the entire development.
One aspect that was missing is Capital Bikeshare. Caroline is interested in bringing this to the development and metro stop but no concrete plans have been made. The development, though, will have parking for bicycles. Perhaps this development could help other organizers and DDOT to install bike lanes on RIA and make the MBT trail more accessible.
The community will also have the opportunity to use space within Rhode Island Row. Caroline reports that the development teamplans to include some space and make it available for community events, such as local art shows or exhibits to community events (did someone say, FORIA meetings?). Rhode Island Row is excited to see the residents gathering together, aka Friends of Rhode Island Ave, and the comments left on the Insider blog. Caroline uses the blog and FORIA to show potential retail tenants about the enthusiasm of this community. This is proof in point that everything positive we do does matter. So please, make sure to leave comments here and join FORIA!
Do you need another reason to join FORIA: We will be partnering with Urban Atlantic for Rhode Island Row’s grand opening in 2012 and you can be part of the fun! Join today!
38 thoughts on “In Focus: Rhode Island Row **Updated”
I think blog readers should come up with a list of local restaurants for the folks at Rhode Island Row to pursue – I know the developers read this blog. A lot of people are going to be unsatisfied if we end up with a concentration of fast-food joints. So, we should help Rhode Island Row recruit! Reach out to restaurants you like (in person, via email, whatever) and ask them to consider Rhode Island Row and the Woodridge Main Street. My suggestions:
Red Rocks Pizza
Thai Chef or Sala Thai
Open City Diner
Buck’s Fishing & Camping
Comet Ping Pong
This is a fantastic list Stephanie. I wholeheartedly back every place on this list.
please submit some of your suggestions as well!
We have enough pizza options in Brookland/Edgewood/Rhode Island Ave/Ward 5.
I vote for food with Non-Diary options for those of use who are milk-challenged please!
Also would these restaurants have less expensive fair options for those folks with limited disposable income?
Just curious, are there any places in the city that DO have less expensive options that aren’t fast food? Where do folks with limited disposable income currently go? Those would be worth nominating.
As a healthier “fast food” option for some of the smaller spaces that could still accommodate tables and chairs, I would suggest a Chop’t.
I would also nominate a great little joint in chinatown called Luke’s Lobster #LukesLobster. If you like New England seafood fare, they serve clam chowder, lobster/crab/shrimp rolls, etc. They also serve some craft beer and they have a happy hour – but, the inside of the place is kind of “bare bones” enough not to be a traditional restaurant and and its not a bar, per se. I think its a type of business model that could do well and be a cheap start up.
I do have to disagree on the pizza point. Most of the pizza places serve other main dishes and lots of non-italian appetizers. There are also some tasty cheese-less pizzas. Personally, until I can walk to a pizza place, sit down, and have a drink with my husband or friends, I will continue to advocate. But I don’t mind other places it you have any suggestions!
I don’t think we have enough GOOD pizza options on RIA/Ward 5. I want a Red Rocks!
Thanks for the update. Keep them coming.
Bit disappointed not more news onretail. This does not reflect what we were told by Vicki Davis of Urban Atlantic at the Ward 5 Business Expo in March, but of course, things do change. Hope they are still working on getting an Organic Market in the retail mix. The location looks perfect for a Washington Sport Club. And, what happened to the Pet Store? Getting a bikeshare seems like a no-brainer, but I’m sure it will come eventually. (There’s already one at 4th & RIA.) Vicki Davis told us RIARow would have an electric vehicle charging station. Is this still planned? A few of us have encouraged MGM Roast Beef to either relocate or have another location at RIARow. They say they are looking in SE (I suppose they mean the Baseball Stadium area) for another location. I like the Silver Diner, if RIARow wants a chain restaurant. Please no more 7 Eleven’s. RIA has enough of them. Vicki Davis promised us a lot of outdoor seating for Restaurants. So, we are looking forward to that.
Sweet Jesus that rent is expensive but good for the area if it starts to bring in folks that can swing that and not break a sweat.
Uh, not to excited about the “District Government Agency” thing but I’ll reserve judgement until I see what exactly she is talking about. I submitted my list a few months when the developers were soliciting opinions from this site but I would also add:
Pound coffeeshop (currently on Capitol Hill)
Tynan coffeeshop (currently in NOMA and Columbia Heights)
Bait and Tackle
While riding the Metro, I’ve seen a number of Catholic University students eyeing RIARow and talking about it. So, I wouldn’t be surprised if a number of their potential renters will be CUA students. They’ll have great access to MetBranch Trail.
The DC Gov Agency I’ve heard about is the DMV. If that’s true, RIARow would be a great location for it. The Safeway location is too remote, so I hope they don’t put the DMV there.
For retailers, I’ve heard there’s a special rate on leasing space. Like $28 per sq. ft. Can RIAInsider provide details? Bozzuto is even having a move in special for apartment renters, get one month free.
Ben’s Chili Bowl East
Kramer’s Books/Afterwords Cafe
City Lights of China
Wok N Roll
Red Rocks Pizza
Cafe St. X
Non-restaurant: Trader Joe’s seems like a long-shot at this point…
Would this mean no CVS in the plaza by 4th and Rhode Island?
You are correct! The CVS lease at 4th & RIA expires in 2 years. So, CVS has decided to move to RIARow. I wonder if the Subway will follow. I like Subway, although PotBelly could be another restaurant for RIARow.
Here’s an idea: integrate better with the immediate environment by making a pedestrian path from the metro to the post office which is RIGHT THERE and used to be sort of accessible, but now is a pain in the neck to get to, partly because of this beautiful development. In other words, please take note that a transit-oriented development showpiece would do well to think about what people use this transit to get TO.
Please: any restaurant that is visited daily by a truck bearing fresh meat, seafood, and produce. Fresh, real food. Not fast food.
ugh. this development looks so cheesy and ticky tacky. cheap materials and that recycled, cylindrical corner on the apartment building. I really hope the finished product is a little higher quality. not to mention the apartment hallways look like they are from the late 90s and they are brand new! right now, the project looks like it belongs in arlington (or maybe even more like manassas, for that matter). who is designing this stuff?? what is happening to my city?? i’ll take my ghetto over bland, taste-less, lower-middle-brow Virginia any day.
I actually have to disagree with you. The materials used for the apartments were very nice and built well. Your statement on you rather having a ghetto over this type of positive redevelopment, I am sure you can still find some places elsewhere in DC so you better sell soon because positive redevelopment is coming to RIA and residents are welcoming it!
RIARow reminds me more of the new Rockville Center near the Metro, but on a much smaller scale. Rockville has lots of outdoor restaurant seating, a beautifully elegant library, and much more. I go to Rockville Center often. They even have an Arts Center that reminds me of Art Enables, and it offers classes and workspace for everyone. You might want to take a tour of the RIARow apartments (either now or later) before drawing any final conclusions. I wouldn’t be surprised if Urban Atlantic/Bozzuto win some awards for urban Transit-Oriented Development.
Let me break this down for you. You’re complaining about the ONLY development to come to this area for the way it looks. You also say that you’d rather keep your “ghetto” than have this development here. It is precisely this attitude that keeps this area the ghetto that it is. Finally, a developer comes in and tries to build something different and better for the community and you complain about it’s aesthetics? You deserve to live in the ghetto, but do it elsewhere. I bought my house in anticipation of some positive development of any sort and it has begun here at RI Row. Is it perfect? No. Is it better than the waste of space that was there before? Absolutely! You need to get a grasp of reality and realize that the developer took a risk on that area and isn’t going to build a Chevy Chase-like development here.
Stop wasting space on the blog with your pointless, ignorant comments.
I’m still somewhat excited about this development, but have been a little disappointed with it for a while. First, I was surprised to see them using wood construction on a massive, multi-family development. Why are we not good enough for the steel-and-concrete constructions that our neighbors to the south (NoMa) are practically tripping over? One thing you wouldn’t be able to tell from your tour is that those walls and floors/ceilings are going to transmit every last ounce of noise from room to room and apartment to apartment. Also “wood-look resilient?” Yay, laminate…that says “high-end!” It’s sad and disappointing that they couldn’t use better-quality construction materials, and reminds me more of the cheap suburban “apartments around a sewage swamp…I mean LAKE!…yeah, LAKE!” that are so popular in my hometown area than the ultra-chic luxury apartments we’ve seen in DC lately.
I’m also disappointed to hear at this point that they’ve pretty much so got the DMV and CVS (as the ANCHOR STORE!) and…that’s about it. First off, I hate CVS. I don’t know that I’ve ever been in a CVS store that impressed me, in DC or anywhere else. A good location and customer pressure are not going to change this, their corporate culture SUCKS and the only thing that would change their model would be massive losses (don’t hold your breath, even if we all boycotted them, they still own the largest prescription drug insurance scheme in the country). I’ll keep doing my shopping at the Rite Aid up the street, which does nothing for the development or my own convenience. Also, I’m not sure the DMV is going to be a big draw for *other* businesses of the caliber we want. The idea that the DMV will bring all sorts of people into the neighborhood is not particularly sound. With DC going to online services, the middle-class and above, tech-savvy residents will see the inside of a DMV maybe once every 10 years (I know the next time I see one will be in at least 7 years, with online DL renewal and no car). Older and poorer people are more likely to conduct face-to-face transactions, lacking the resources or the know-how to “skip the trip.” Even if the DMV did draw a large cross-section of residents, they’re not exactly looking to turn their DMV trip into a luxury shopping experience. A sandwich shop and a convenience store – maybe a coffee shop if I had any confidence that yuppies go to the DMV at all, much less one here – are about the only places I think we can hope most DMV visitors would patronize during their DMV trip (not even sold on that, totally, as the Brentwood DMV location used to prohibit food & drinks inside, so no need for even the basest of retail). Finally, if they’re going to move the services from the Brentwood Rd. outpost there, I’m terrified, because the student drivers and the test-takers launching from there are a scary bunch to be a pedestrian around. Just what we need in a “walkable” development.
Finally, I’m SUPER disappointed in their handling of pedestrian/car traffic coming from the RIA Plaza. The lights have NO pedestrian preference, EVER. If you want a walk signal, you have to push a button and, typically, wait a whole light cycle for it! Those lights should include walk signals flowing with traffic at ALL times. Moreover, it’s not like the drivers care if there’s a pedestrian there. They need WAY better signage and more obvious markings to alert drivers that, yes, there is a pedestrian right-of-way now! Particularly in the driveway out of the plaza, the crosswalk is so far around the corner from the light that drivers don’t notice it’s there. A sign MUST be placed there alerting drivers that there’s a crosswalk 20 feet or whatever it is after right turn. I have almost been hit by numerous cars and several buses while crossing with a walk signal, and one bus driver flipped me off when I called him on running right through the red light without even slowing down (I yelled “I have a walk signal”…yes, I probably sounded angry, but I did not use any profanity or other aggressive language to warrant such a response). There’s a guy in the morning who holds a slow/stop sign as you’re entering the development, I guess to try to train cars, and this morning I watched two cars blow right past him as he had his sign turned to “stop” for some pedestrians, who were already in the road when the cars whizzed by without a care. So, nowadays, I just cross the “old” way, which is safer and has better sight lines (and a higher incidence of cars stopping for me before turning on red), despite being illegal. Also, the location of the crosswalk across the kiss-n-ride encourages drivers to stop right in the middle of the crosswalk, blocking my pathway and leading to several other near-collisions (the drivers don’t look for a pedestrian passing in front of their car before pulling away from the curb…most are too busy still saying goodbye or yacking on a cell phone). Yes, I will be taking these concerns to DDOT shortly in the hopes of getting this fixed before we have hundreds more people using these streets, but if the developers are reading this blog…THIS IS A HUGE PET PEEVE OF YOUR FUTURE CUSTOMERS!
Overall, I’m still optimistic, but I do hope that they push hard for good retail and work on improving the pedestrian-orientation of the development. Far too much of this neighborhood is unfriendly to pedestrians, and this development, I hoped, would change that. Also, just to reiterate, the retail should be about the residents, not the DMV patrons or the folks waiting for their bus back to Maryland…a sit down restaurant, a dry cleaners, home goods/clothing stores, and other things that people need by their HOME, not something you might stop off at before your 4 hours a decade of hell at the DMV or a long bus ride home.
The DMV at Georgetown Park Malls draws a multitude of people who are all residents of DC. When the DMV was on Brentwood Road, I heard no complaints about the type of people coming in. So, I’m sure you won’t hear the complaints of which you speak for the RIARow DMV or retail. Urban Atlantic told us in March that RIA Metro gets over 11,000 people on a daily basis. So, at least some retail should be aimed at them. But, mostly, it should be aimed at the RIARow residents and surrounding communities. Urban Atlantic told us in March that they had a Cleaners, a Cell Phone Company, a Pet Store, a Pharmacy, and an Organic Market that would be moving into RIARow. So, if these businesses are not ready to move in, except CVS, I do hope that Urban Atlantic will continue to pursue them.
Some good news for RIA: Mr. P’s Ribs and Fish at 514 Rhode Island Avenue NE, has been voted #9 of the Top 20 “Cheap Dinner” Joints In D.C. conducted by WUSA9.com. (http://dupontcircle.wusa9.com/photo-gallery/restaurants/84935-photos-top-20-cheap-dinner-joints-dc?page=21.) Potbelly got voted twice on this poll.
I’m not necessarily *complaining* about the type of people coming in…people with driver’s licenses are by and large decent, respectable citizens, and I haven’t ever felt uncomfortable in a DMV in DC (except, as mentioned, walking around the Brentwood Rd. testing station…I can’t recall EVER being that bad of a driver). However, I reiterate that I have not set foot in a DMV for over 2 years, and won’t for at least another 7 because of the focus on online self service that just became universal in the last few years. A little over 2 years ago, I had to go to a DMV to change my address…today I can (and would) do it in a few clicks. Same goes for renewing my license…I only need to go the DMV to have an updated photo taken once every 10 years (and barring something extreme, that’s the only reason I have to interact with the DMV at all). Even someone who owns a car just needs to show up for an inspection (in SW) every 2 years, and can conduct all the rest of their business online for a period of 10 years. I just don’t think that a small number of people, many of whom are not the target demographic of the development, are going to do as much good as some are getting excited about.
Commuters may support some community-serving retail, such as a coffee shop or maybe even a cleaners (if it could be OXXO, we could kill two birds with one stone…bring *my* favorite cleaner into the neighborhood and make it an option for commuters due to their convenient pick up/drop off system). The kiss-n-ride and park-n-ride commuters may even help a restaurant if they see the value in having a nice meal at the station and missing the rush-hour traffic home. The commuters can help, I just want to avoid the prospect of convenience stores/fast food focusing on people who want to be in and out of the area in 10 minutes over the needs of people who will spend 15+ hours a day in the neighborhood. I’m not saying don’t look at the commuter element at all, I’m just saying don’t pander to it too heavily. Everyone needs a pack of gum here and there, but people who live in a community need much more.
@Ms. D, just to address some of your concerns about the construction. The buildings in NOMA are built with concrete and steel, as they are considered high rises by DC standards. And even at that, the majority of the steel and concrete are used in the floor/ceiling slabs, and columns. The rest of the interior space is built using metal studs with gypsum board, which in reality is not much different than wood studs with gypsum board. There are a couple of buildings that are being built in that area using the same process as RI Row, as they have a smaller number of floors and building height. Concerning the sound transmission, the only area that would really be an issue is through the floor, as it is constructed with the wood, and honestly, with the amount of flooring and insulation that is going to be used, I doubt that will actually be the case. Between the units, there will be a demising wall, which if built correctly, should limit the majority of sound transmittance (as these are typically well sound insulated, and built to not only limit sound transmission but also fire spread). Now, if someone is having a huge party or screaming at the top of their lungs, then you will still have an issue, however, you would have an issue no matter what construction.
They did use a concrete slab and steel/concrete columns on the first floor, however that is more of a fire/life safety precaution, since the occupied use on the first floor is retail rather than residential.
Could they have built the building with more concrete and steel? Of course, however due to years of unsustainable construction, some resources have reached insane prices (metals in particular). Had they built this way, the prices for this development would have definitely gone up, impacting all those who plan on moving or leasing space there. In addition, the building would be overdesigned and in some sense be wasteful. I would assume that since this building has gone through the inspections of DCRA, that it is built per code (International Building Code, ICC) which would address many of the sound and life safety codes.
By the way, I’m not with the firm Lessard Group who designed the building.
I appreciate you explaining that, but as I sit in my stick-built, brick-exterior, multi-unit building right now, listening to my upstairs neighbor vacuum (almost as loud as if I was running the vacuum in here, and we have true hardwood floors), I still have my doubts. I don’t doubt that the building is up to code at all, much like I don’t doubt that my building is up to code (gut remodel in ’09, so modern codes), but I have lived in buildings like that before and now. It’s not “neighbors having a loud party” it’s a neighbor coming home late and not kicking their shoes off that wakes me up. Meanwhile, my friends who live in the “highrise” concrete-and-steel buildings can have a number of people over and have their neighbors surprised that they’re having a party (referencing a specific incident where we had about 20 people and music going in a friend’s place and the neighbor was surprised when they saw how many people were there when they stopped over for a question…yes, he was partially pleasantly surprised to find 20 girls hanging out for “ladies’ night,” but he truly had no clue she had so many people over). This versus my home, where my guests often comment on how much noise I get from neighbors. Given that Constitution Square rents for only slightly more than RIR, I have my doubts about how much more would have been demanded in rent to make the project financially feasible. Still, it’s clearly renting, thankfully. The units have some nice finishes and are fairly spacious, and are right on top of a convenient Metro. I wish it were a little more high-end, but it’s clearly working, for now. I just hope it *is* sustainable, both in a construction and continued interest sense. The last thing I want to see is reviews on the internet about how they cheaped out on construction as the first group of renters is preparing to leave.
Please remember that several businesses have signed letters of intent. While its possible that some might back out, some percetnage of those will end up on the row. I’m optimistic! Also, Ms. Kenney did not say specifically that there would be a DMV. She said there would be some TYPE of gov’t agency that would draw a lot of foot traffic, which should be a huge draw for other retailers.
Finally, I agree with Ms. D on the need for better walk signals and some real [law] enforcement of the new traffic patterns. That could probably said for much of RIA.
Yes, pedestrian improvements are sorely needed around here, in many, many locations. Many of the walk signals across RIA are not long enough to cross that huge road, and the median is pretty tiny so getting stuck there is a harrowing experience (compare, to say, PA Ave. SE, where the median is huge and a safe-feeling place to wait for a signal). People don’t mind crosswalks…I have even had the police blow past me without flinching when standing in the median of the traffic circle on Brentwood Road (I’m not sure if cars are *required* to yield to pedestrians there, but, especially if you’re already in the median, it’s a nice thing to do). Many signaled crosswalks turn pedestrians into 3rd or 4th class citizens, having to wait FOREVER for your signal. Many sidewalks are too narrow and/or in poor repair. Hopefully an influx of fresh blood can help move these improvements along, along with hopefully improving biking infrastructure. RIR being a model for pedestrian/cyclist/transit-oriented development would probably be hugely helpful in this regard. I believe that pedestrian and cyclist infrastructure is not only an issue for us youngins’, but for older and poorer residents who rely on their feet/bikes/transit to get around the city.
Has anyone thought of contacting B-Cafe on 12th about opening a second location at RIARow? I understand B-Cafe wants to expand to include outdoor seating. At RIARow, they will already have that. If B-Cafe expands to RIARow, the “B” would then stand for Brentwood, not Brookland.
The buildings in NoMA are bland Ballston wanna-bes, and in my opinion, are way out of proportion for the surrounding neighborhood, particularly the Loree Grand. I prefer the look and size of Rhode Island Row.
If they must bring in chain restaurants, how about smaller local-based chains like Lebanese Taverna (6 locations in the DC area), Thaiphoon (5 locations in the DC area) or Clydes. Please no TGIF Fridays/Chilis type places.
If not an independent restaurant like Rustik and Boundrystone further up on RIA, then my best case scenario would be the types of restaurants the Neighborhood Restaurant Group puts out – Churchkey, Evening Star, Birch and Barley, Tallula, etc.
I am disappointed that no trees have been included in the medien just when turning from RI Avenue into the “row” and shopping complex. Right now there is nothing bit concrete.
Wouldn’t it have been a great opportunity to plant some trees when the whole traffic flow and walk ways have been redone?
Can’t tell if any of the commenters above are actually moving into RI Row, but I’ll be there starting in January. This blog and the input that the developers gleaned from the community are what sealed the deal for my girlfriend and I. I’ve lived in Brightwood for over 4 years (she’s moving up from NC), and we didn’t want to live in an overly wanna-be gentrified area (which I consider NoMa to be); instead, we wanted to be on the ground floor of helping build a neighborhood. From what I see here, I’m even more excited to join the community and actively become a part of it.
See you guys soon!
Im sorry but a CVS is NOT an exciting thing. There are plenty of those in the area and that does absolutely nothing to boost the neighborhood. And a DC Government agency?? I dont really see a benefit in that at all. I have to say, all in all Im pretty disappointed. I was really hoping a nice coffee shop might go in there, some restaurants, things to make it a sort of community center if you will and that doesnt seem to be happening.
Didnt they originally plan on a nice park in the middle that now seems to be replaced with parking?
Congrats on building some nice, overpriced apartments. Thats the way to make our neighborhood bright.
Easy, negative Nancy. You’re talking about TWO establishments out of 24. Granted, I’m not entirely excited about CVS being the cornerstone, but it’s something…and it’s convenient. As far as the agency going in, I’m fine with it…because it helps people in the community. That leaves 22 other retail/restaurant spaces that are open for lease. Who said a nice little coffee shop won’t go in? I didn’t hear anybody say that a restaurants WOULDN’T be there. Also, how can you say the apartments are overpriced when they’re offering several below market? Look at other apartments this size in comparable places in DC, and you’ll see they’re right at market.
I guess you just can’t please everybody all the time.
Thats my point exactly…its not something. You cant say a CVS is adding or bringing anything to our neighborhood when we already have one (or two…).
Im also interested to hear about how to get one of the below market apartments? In searching on the website none of them come up and when I called to ask about them I was told they are only available to qualified applicants?
I dont doubt that there will be plenty of other fine businesses, but using CVS as the cornerstone is not exactly a draw. And neither is a government agency. If you look at all of the areas around the city surrounded by the district government agencies they arent exactly booming (short of georgetown DMV, but that was an already established area when the DMV went in).
As a future tenant and cyclist, (#bikedc) i would like to see a bike shop. As far as dining options go, I would like to see a sushi bar, Chevy’s, California pizza kitchen, Barnes & noble, apple store? (hehe), city sports, even a florist. I am VERY against a DMV. Lets swap that DMV for a police substation. Now THAT would be nice. I’m moving from Waterfront SW and the realization that I’m moving to “Brentwood” just got real. *Shudders* lol oh- and what’s-up with the crime on the metro branch trail?? The trail was a big draw for me until i did some research, and let’s just say I won’t be using it.
I’d suggest making contact and pursuing or enticing the Neighborhood Restaurant Group to open a restaurant in RIRow. Rustico, Evening Star Cafe, Churchkey, and Birch and Barley. Also think 14th Street has a number of restaurants that would fit nicely as neighborhood places including Pearl Dive Oyster Palace, Masa 14, Estadio
and Cork. I also would like a nice wine shop to open up.
CVS is relocating their store but still have time on the current Lease according to someone in the know in this stream. Seems strange with such a strong need for a pharmacy with so many elderly on the North side of R.I. being so important that they wouldn’t at least wait for the pedestrian bridge to open BEFORE closing in the RI Shopping Center. I heard bids were submitted towards the end of 2011 for the bridge construction. Can’t wait for this !