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Crystal City developer plans new ‘North District’ neighborhood with Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, specialty grocer

Lots of retail, residential, and direct access to the Crystal City Metro station

Rendering courtesy of JBG SMITH

This past July, two of the D.C. area’s top development firms, New York City-based developer Vornado Realty Trust and Chevy Chase-based developer The JBG Cos., merged in order to create JBG SMITH. Through this merge, the developer was able to acquire nearly two dozen properties in Crystal City, Virginia, spanning over 7 million square feet. With these properties, the developer hopes to rebrand a couple blocks of the city in order to create “North District.”

The proposed “North District” neighborhood is expected to be a “pedestrian-centric community with an active retail heart,” according to a press release. As first reported by Washington Business Journal, the developer recently filed the first development application for the project, which is adjacent to the Crystal City Metro station.

The proposal calls for 120,000 square feet or retail across several properties and a roughly 50,000-square-foot Alamo Drafthouse Cinema. There are also plans for a 15,000- to 20,000-square-foot specialty grocery store.

The developer plans on filing another application later this year in order to convert the 12-story tower at 1750 Crystal Drive for residential and retail after adding six floors to the top of the building. The building at 1770 Crystal Drive will also be rebranded.

A press release also reports that there are plans for a new “iconic” retail building at the corner of 18th Street and Crystal Drive with public plazas, parks, and direct access to the Metro and Mt. Vernon bike trail.

In a statement, Brian Coulter, co-chief development officer of JBG SMITH, said, “We see the potential for this area to be a vibrant center of activity—with a warm street experience that integrates a curated mix of anchor and small retailers with new transit connections and public spaces.”

Meet 'North District,' JBG Smith's partial rebranding of Crystal City [Washington Business Journal]

Say hello to D.C.’s largest developer, JBG SMITH [Curbed DC]

Alamo Drafthouse Cinema signs on to planned Crystal City project [Curbed DC]