Shaw Still on the Move

Shaw Streets

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While the pandemic-era economy is still struggling, real estate and new business development in Shaw continues to move forward.

A recent survey by Urban Turf shows the delivery of 600 residential units in the last year, with 15 projects representing 870 units coming in this and future years. The projects offer a mix of rental units, condos, co-living space, offices, retail and a hotel. Many of the new Shaw projects may resemble each other, with four projects (901 W Street, 2220 11th Street, 631 P Street, 1128 10th Street) designed by architectural firm Eric Colbert and Associates, two (the 9 ½ Street Initiative and the Washington Apartments redevelopment at 1200 5th Street) designed by Torti Gallas and two (1318 Ninth St., 1400 Ninth St.) by Architextual.

And expect to see new businesses opening soon. Row House, bringing rowing to Shaw, is coming to 901 W Street. The concept comes from New York City, offering a low impact, full-body synchronized group fitness experience. Row House Shaw opens April 1. Yardbird Southern Table and Bar, the Miami-based restaurant concept with locations worldwide, is also opening its first DC restaurant at 901 New York Avenue NW in April.

Dacha Beer Garden proprietors Ilya and Dmitri want your vote in the USA Today Reader’s Poll. Photo: Alexander M. Padro

Dacha Up for Best Beer Garden in the USA
Shaw’s Dacha Beer Garden, no stranger to awards for Best Beer Garden in DMV polls, is moving to the big time. They are in a USA Today Readers’ Poll angling for a spot in the newspaper’s list of the nation’s 10 Best Beer Gardens. As one of the 20 finalists, Dacha is competing with beer gardens across the country, including the beer-soaked communities of Milwaukee and Chicago. You can vote to put Dacha Beer Garden on USA Today’s Best 10 List by going to https:/www.10best.com/awards/travel/best-beer-garden/dacha-beer-garden-washington-dc/. Voting ends on Tuesday, March 16 at noon. Winners will be announced on March 26.

Wood for Good Material Still Available
Wood for Good, the Shaw Main Streets program to which the Mayor has encouraged District business and property owners to donate plywood formerly used to protect storefronts and plate glass windows for recycling, is still operating. This month, DC Inner City Excellence (DC-ICE), which promotes urban skating by District youth of all backgrounds, challenging them to Olympian levels of excellence, took advantage of the program. DC-ICE is taking the plywood it got from Wood for Good to build the Peterbug Ice Rink, located behind the famed Peterbug Shoe Academy on Capitol Hill.

Wood for Good put to use at the new Peterbug Ice Rink. Photo courtesy of DC-ICE

The Wood for Good project is still standing by to accept the city’s excess plywood with the intent of putting it all to a productive and creative second life. Artists, creatives and community groups anywhere in DC that are interested in using this recycled lumber in a project should send an email to shawmainstreetsinc@gmail.com with their contact information and proposed use for the wood. They will be contacted to confirm each project’s needs and confirm availability of inventory for pick up. Based on the project description and quantity of wood provided, they may be asked to post images of finished work on Instagram, using the hashtag #woodforgood, or donate items for a charity auction.

Shaw Chefs Go Raw
Two Shaw chefs went nude for a DC campaign to support restaurant workers in need. Frank Mills, beverage director at Roy Boys, and Daniel Kramer, chef of Gogi Yogi, posed nude with strategically placed aprons to aid a charity fundraiser by Revivalist Spirits. The Pennsylvania gin maker will post a nude DC restauranteur on its Facebook page every week and donate $1 for every Facebook share or Instagram repost (up to $5,000) to the LEE Initiative set up by Chef Edward Lee and Lindsey Ofacek to support struggling workers in the hospitality industry. Mills’ post includes the recipe for “Shame on a pear,” a cocktail he created. Watch Revivalist Spirits’ social media (Facebook: RevivalistGins, Instagram: @therevivalistgins) for your chance to support restaurant workers.

WETA Goes Home to Shaw
Public television station WETA has launched a new series illustrating residential communities in the region, with Shaw being featured in its first episode. The series, entitled “If You Lived Here,” spotlights notable neighborhoods in the DMV, describing the features that make them attractive and features three new properties in the neighborhood up for sale. The Shaw episode describes the neighborhood’s role in DC history, its Michelin restaurants and reputation as a dining destination, as well as its (pre-pandemic) status as an entertainment destination. In the show, Christian Gregory, son of comedian/activist Dick Gregory, explains how Shaw has been able to maintain its link to history while still developing to meet the needs of the contemporary world. The hosts ooh-and-ahh over the features of Ditto Development’s Poet Place at 1923 Ninth Street and rowhouse condos on the 900 blocks of O and S Streets and attempt to guess the spaces’ selling prices. Shaw had previously been profiled in the WETA series “WETA Neighborhoods” in 2006. You can view the Shaw episode of “If You Lived Here” on WETA or see it on their website at https://watch.weta.org/video/shawi5ntst/?s=03.

Shaw Businesses Stay Safe with Free PPE
Shaw businesses have been spending countless dollars on PPE for staff and customers during the pandemic. Shaw Main Streets recently distributed free masks and sanitizer donated by the Rodham Institute and the Recreation Wish List Committee to help support some of the neighborhood’s small businesses. Twelve Black-owned businesses in Shaw were chosen to receive a total of 25,000 disposable masks and 72 gallons of gel hand sanitizer.

The Rodham Institute at George Washington University School of Medicine & Health Sciences was founded in 2013 in honor of former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton’s mother, the late Dorothy Rodham. The organization seeks to apply the transformative power of education to achieve health equity in Washington, DC. Recreation Wish List Committee was founded by former DC First Lady Cora Masters Barry, who received the Rodham Institute’s Beacon of Light Award.

“The Rodham Institute’s commitment to leveling the playing field for the District’s most underserved communities by always fighting for equity, and access to health care, is greatly appreciated and much needed,” said Mrs. Barry in a written statement.