A new kind of partnership is packing more punch into the dense, urban Washington, D.C., area. Local demand for housing, grocery stores, and large-scale retailers all in one place propelled the development of 77H in an attempt to meet all of these needs in one neighborhood.
The project is the first new construction community on the continent to incorporate a Walmart and housing all in one building. Developer JBG has been working for several years with the superstore to create the project and three others similar to it.
One of the most difficult parts of designing the building was making sure not to disturb the neighborhood with noise from stocking a big-box store. So, indoor loading docks were incorporated to minimize sound.
In addition to being neighborhood-friendly, the building incorporates green features for LEED Silver certification, with smoke-free living and bike storage among the residential services. The Walmart portion of the building also boasts LEED Silver certification, for retail, says Rafael Muñiz, senior vice president of development at JBG.
“In coordination with [the] Walmart, we are capturing a lot of the rainwater and reusing it to operate their mechanical systems,” he says.
The limited amount of street space in the District forced the developers to consider where patrons and residents alike would park. All of the parking for the building is located, with controlled access, underground. As for public transit, 77H offers many options. A bike-share station was installed on site, and, eventually, a streetcar stop will be in front of the building.
Addressing the need for affordable housing was also part of the focus behind the development, so 26 of the units are reserved for residents earning below 80 percent of the area median income.
Just because space was limited doesn’t mean JBG skimped on amenities, either. A two-level fitness center, two outdoor courtyards, and a rooftop swimming pool were all included as part of the Class A design.