Thursday, July 27, 2017

Fitness First clearing out in Bethesda (Photos)

A convoy of trucks and vans lined up in front of 7900 Wisconsin Avenue yesterday, as the contents of the shuttered Fitness First was unloaded into them. 7900 Wisconsin is being demolished to make way for The JBG Companies' 7900 Wisconsin project, expected to be anchored by a Trader Joe's grocery store. Disappointed the Aldon Management cones didn't make an appearance.






Public meeting set for Marriott International HQ project

The development team for the future downtown Bethesda headquarters of Marriott International is hosting a public meeting to preview their sketch plan, preliminary plan, and site plan on Thursday, August 10, 2017 at 7:00 PM at the Bethesda-Chevy Chase Regional Services Center, located at 4805 Edgemoor Lane in downtown Bethesda.

825,000 SF of office space and 225,000 SF of hotel space are planned for the development, which will be located at 7750 Wisconsin Avenue. Several structures remain to be torn down on the site. Hopefully, we will learn whether Marriott was able to assemble the Tastee Diner and Woodmont Grill properties, as it's unlikely they would move forward on a tentative deal with Tastee if they couldn't get Woodmont Grill.

Phase II of Pike & Rose opens to the public (Photos)

Looking north up
the new extension of
Grand Park Avenue that
opened seconds earlier
Federal Realty opened the long-awaited second phase of its Pike & Rose development to the public yesterday at 4:00 PM. A whole new section of the North Bethesda development's street grid is now accessible to drivers, pedestrians and cyclists, ahead of some major Phase II business openings next week. Sephora will open in the ground floor of The Henri apartments on August 3. Pinstripes, a dining and entertainment center featuring bowling, bocce and a rooftop terrace, will host a (reportedly sold-out) Grand Opening celebration on August 4. It will then officially open the next day.
Rose Park will be bookended
by L.L. Bean (at right) and
a future restaurant addition
to the left of this scene
Plantings along the edge of
Rose Park looking toward
Rockville to the north
A "terraced" grade and water
features are highlights at
Rose Park
 

This building on the west
edge of Rose Park is
expected to be a future
restaurant
View of Rose Park from
outside The Henri
But before those openings, one of the property's biggest public amenities will make its debut. On August 1, Rose Park will open. The half-acre park will feature green space, paths and gathering space, and water features. It serves as the "central park" anchor of Phase II, and is bolstered by an unusual green addition - a tall tree. The Legacy Tree is an attempt to subvert the typical "tiny tree" syndrome in new urbanist developments, by adding a mature tree trucked in from New Jersey, and planting it (via a crane) at the edge of the park.
The Legacy Tree
recently planted at the
edge of Rose Park
From a practical standpoint, the most significant benefit of the new street openings will be for drivers approaching Pike & Rose from I-270 by the Montrose Parkway. Up until Wednesday, you had to laboriously (and counterintuitively) turn left at Towne Road (which shares the title of "Longest Red Light in Montgomery County with its brother one block east), then take the on-ramp onto Rockville Pike and head south to Pike & Rose. Now you can simply turn right onto Towne, and turn left onto Rose Avenue between Pinstripes and The Henri.
Short Cut City: Now you can
enter Pike & Rose from the rear,
by taking this new Rose Avenue
from Towne Road...
...then turn right at this
intersection onto Grand Park Avenue
to reach the parking garages
Here's a photo gallery of the fence opening yesterday, and a preview of what you'll see as you venture though Phase II, another major milestone in the development of the Pike District:
At 4:00, construction workers
unlock the gate at Grand Park Avenue
and Trade Street that has been a dead
end for several years
Gate opening




Removing the cones











I am the first "civilian" on the
new block of Grand Park Avenue
The Henri apartments, and
the aroma of fresh asphalt
Future home of Sur la Table
at the end of August
Across from The Henri is the
Canopy by Hilton hotel, and this
is the future event space for
wedding receptions and more
Even better is this roof deck area
that can create an indoor-outdoor space
for events
Lobby entrance of The Henri
Looking back down
Grand Park Avenue toward
Old Georgetown Road from
in front of The Henri; this block
is quite dark in the late afternoon
Facade of The Henri
Canopy by Hilton hotel
(opening January/Februrary 2018)
topped by 930 Rose condos
Sephora, opening August 3
in The Henri
Sephora
Sephora is already
fully-stocked inside
Future restaurant space at the
northeast corner of The Henri
Looking north toward the next
block, Rose Avenue and Rose Park (R)
Looking east on Rose Avenue
with future L.L. Bean at left,
and Canopy by Hilton at right
Looking back toward Phase I and
Old Georgetown Road from Rose Avenue
 
Rose Avenue
Pinstripes rooftop deck
The Henri, as seen from Rose Park
Cement mixer arrives in front
of the Canopy by Hilton
Canopy by Hilton topped
by 930 Rose condos
As All-American as you can get
Working on windows at
future L.L. Bean store

Canopy's ground floor tenants will be
Nando's Peri-Peri, Taylor Gourmet,
Elizabeth Arden Red Door Spa and
bluemercury
Construction worker poses in front
of future entrance to Canopy by Hilton/
930 Rose condos
L.L. Bean
Gelberg Signs installing the signs at
Pinstripes
Main sign at Pinstripes
Outdoor dining space for the bistro
at Pinstripes
The Henri

The north end of the property at
Prose Street remains a closed and
active construction area

Prose Street looking toward
future Porsche of Bethesda dealership
View from the intersection of
Prose Street and Grand Park Avenue
Loading dock or parking garage
at The Henri
The CEO of Pinstripes was on
the premises yesterday
Let's walk back to Phase I...
...to look at H&M, opening at
the end of August
The signs are up at H&M
New mural being added...
...right before your eyes



One of the first vehicles to
drive through Phase II
But pedestrians weren't forgotten...






All clear
Phase II is "Here & Now"