Brookland Plaza Purchased By Developer, Looks To Upgrade Shopping Center

Photo courtesy of Divaris Real Estate Inc.
Photo courtesy of Divaris Real Estate Inc.

Brookland Plaza, the strip mall located along  10th Street NE near Michigan Ave and Turkey Thicket  has been purchased for about $5.5 million dollars, according  to this story in the Washington Business Journal. The development firm that purchased the shopping center, Urban Investment Partners,  has thus far been a predominately residential developer. However, according to the story, it is likely to remain a retail location, after some improvements. From the story:

The site could potentially be redeveloped into a couple hundred residential units but UIP did not acquire the property for its redevelopment potential, Schwat said.

UIP is planning to make some modest improvements to the center and believes part of the long-term value from the site will come from increasing rental rates as the Brookland sees more development activity with the Catholic University of America as its anchor. The older rental rates in the center, which includes a number of independently owned retail stores and restaurants, hover at around $15 per square foot, but Schwat said he expects new leasing activity will come in at twice that.

4 thoughts on “Brookland Plaza Purchased By Developer, Looks To Upgrade Shopping Center”

  1. So increased rents may drive out our long term neighborhood businesses, such as Earls, who has been here for over 30 years,

  2. It finally (finally!) got a new anchor store on the north end with the new Vet who could not be friendlier and is a great addition to the neighborhood. The south anchor store is STILL vacant (5+ years), as is the former Arc copy center spot. If they think the site has such potential I wish they would leave Earl and the other existing shops alone and bring new stores into these empty locations. Some of its nearest neighbors (at least this one) happen to value “independently owned retail” over chains.

  3. Maybe the rent for current tenants will stay the same while new tenant rates will rise? Otherwise, glad to hear they’re planning on making some improvements … this place could use a little sprucing up! Man, it’d be great if a small grocery store opened here!

  4. These comments are characteristic of a ‘blame the developer’ mentality, when, in fact, the sellers are part of this equation. The center was sold for $5.5 million ($305 per SF for an unanchored, aging retail strip in a secondary location!). Fundamental development economics suggest that new rents in the range of $30 per SF will be required to amortize that debt, particularly if additional costs are incurred to renovate/upgrade the center.

    Those vacant spaces have remained empty for multiple reasons: 1) there are insufficient residential densities in the surrounding area (let’s hope the new owners will consider adding more residential); 2) the center likely does not meet the physical criteria required by retail tenants today (e.g., store depths); 3) there are too few daytime employees in surrounding businesses as part of the mix of market segments necessary to support a retail center; and 4) insufficient parking and no easy “in/out” egress and very awkward intersection at 10th/Michigan.

    Worse yet, the 1,492-space parking garage proposed by Doug Jemal/Douglas Development behind this center will do very little, if anything, to generate demand for retail uses here. Let’s hope surrounding neighbors recognize this, and provide their support to something other than a behemoth parking garage.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *