CM Bonds Calls Wardman Hotel Conversion to Affordable housing a “Dream Project”
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: May 28, 2021
Councilmember Anita Bonds on the Kojo Nnamdi Show (WAMU) ‘Politics Hour’ today, called the Wardman Hotel project a “dream type” project and promised to look into it “seriously.”
Since the Wardman Park Marriott Hotel declared bankruptcy earlier this year, neighbors and residents around the city have begun a grassroots effort to convert the Hotel into deeply affordable housing. Calling themselves the Wardman Hotel Strategy Team (WHST), they have engaged the community and urged elected officials to buy the property to help the Mayor reach her goal of 1990 affordable housing units in Rock Creek West.
Located on a 16-acre campus off Connecticut Ave. in Woodley Park, the site has drawn increasing attention as a once in a lifetime opportunity. The WHST has developed a plan for 500 units of 100% affordable mixed income housing ranging from 0-80% of the MFI, with a majority family sized three- and four-bedroom units. The plan shows that existing built space could include community amenities such as a culinary training facility, entertainment venues, a day care center, athletic facilities, and expansion classrooms for Oyster-Adams Bilingual Elementary School, all located above the Metro.
Bonds also said that a member of her staff has toured the property and that she looks forward to a serious examination of the project. Earlier this year Councilmember Kenyan McDuffie asked the Mayor to set aside $140 million in the 2022 budget to purchase the site, but it is not included in the Mayor’s request. The property is up for auction but so far, the city has not made a bid. Ward 3 Councilmember Mary Cheh and Vincent Gray have accepted the Team’s invitation for a tour.
The Wardman Hotel Strategy Team is a broad coalition of DC residents drawn together with a common purpose of developing in DC affordable mixed income housing, while generating opportunities for critical jobs development and economic mobility.
* * * * *