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Affordable housing apartment building in Columbia Heights breaking ground

SW Corner view of building

NW Corner view of building

A new five-story, 28-unit apartment building is breaking ground at 1421 Euclid St, NW in the next few weeks, says Buwa Binitie, managing principal at Dantes Parnters LLC. The site is a 12,325 square-foot parcel that was once the site for the Justice Park.

The affordable housing building is specifically geared towards the hard-of-hearing and deaf community who fall within the low-income household designation of between 30 to 60 percent of the Area Median Income (AMI)—about $50,000 to $60,000 per year.

“There’s nothing but very high-end and expensive apartments in the vicinity of this site, but the people in those apartments have options,” says Binitie. “By us providing an opportunity to those who don’t have options—everyone feels good about [it].”

There will be eight studio apartments, 16 one-bedrooms, four two-bedrooms, covered parking, a fitness area, bike racks as well as a landscaped courtyard.

Inside, the apartments are outfitted with a variety of deaf and hard-of-hearing features like a strobe light/speaker fire and emergency alarm system that also can vibrate the residents’ beds; a video-entry system; TDD/TTY devices in every apartment; and doorbells that flash lights.

The city awarded the $11.5 million project to Dantes Partners, the Perdomo Group and Capital Construction Enterprises—who together form the Euclid Community Partners—in July 2011. The non-profit housing provider Mi Casa has also signed on to help with the project, but Binitie says his group still has yet to find a role for them to take on.

While the housing is geared towards the deaf community, any qualifying resident can apply for an apartment. It’s entirely first come, first serve, says Binitie.

According to rentometer.com, the average (and median) rent for a two-bedroom apartment in this area is around $2400.

Read more articles by Lisa Spinelli.

Lisa Spinelli is Elevation DC's development editor as well as a freelance journalist, copy editor and mother of two. After receiving her Master of Science in print journalism from Columbia University in 2004, Lisa worked across the country and in Italy as a journalist, editor and Web editor. Her website LisaSpinelli.com has links to a smattering of her published clips.
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