Concept Design Approval for McMillan Parcel 2

Lauded as a “high bar for architecture” in the District and an “elegant solution that reinforces the ground plain”, in a 6-1 vote the HPRB approved JAIR LYNCH’s proposed concept design for Parcel 2 during their April 30th meeting. Located between 1st Street and Half Street, the building provides a dynamic and efficient mixed-use program with 250 apartments, of which 25 will be affordable at 80% of AMI, and 15,000 sf of neighborhood serving retail with outdoor seating adjacent the North Service Court and Olmsted Walk. Collectively the design and program optimize the pedestrian experience and benefits to residents, while remaining a backdrop to the historic landmark. Designed by MV+A Architects, the building is imagined to provide a unique expression honoring the McMillan site as a historic landmark, while relating to the existing approved buildings. Drawing inspiration from themes articulated in the Master Plan and Design Guidelines to allow for a cohesive place, the design is unified and diverse, while complimentary to the existing historic resources and sense of place that is McMillan.


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McMillan Surplus and Disposition Resolution Receives Final Approval

Capping off a series of recent approvals by the Zoning Commission and DC Council’s Government Operations and Economic Development Committees, the four resolutions granting the surplus and disposition of McMillan received unanimous passage during the December 2nd Legislative Meeting.  The first resolution, The McMillan Surplus Declaration and Approval Resolution of 2014 (PR20-1081), declares the McMillan Sand Filtration Site surplus property pursuant to DC Official Code §10-801, thereby allowing the sale of a portion of the site.  In separate actions, the Council unanimously passed Resolutions PR20-1082, PR20-1083 and PR20-1084 granting the sale at fair market value to VMP partners – EYA, JAIR LYNCH Development Partners and Trammell Crow Company.


Decommissioned in 1985 following construction of a modernized chemical filtration plant on the adjacent reservoir site, the District purchased the 25-acre site from the federal government in 1987 for redevelopment.  In the ensuing years, the District issued several unsuccessful solicitations with no viable proposals materializing due to the complexity of the site.  In March 2006, the District transferred jurisdiction of the property to the National Capital Revitalization Corporation (“NCRC”) and after a year-long solicitation and rigorous vetting process, NCRC selected Vision McMillan Partners (“VMP”) in July 2007 to develop the McMillan site.


Since 2007, over 200 meetings took place to engage the community on redevelopment plans for the site, including building designs, traffic management, storm water management, preservation and public amenities.  During this period, the master plan constantly evolved fulfilling community priorities and to accommodate DC Water’s Clean River Project.  Today’s development plan is the culmination of years of extraordinary engagement between the District, development team and community, brought to life by the design vision of talented planners and architects.  For more information on the history of the project, see our recently published timeline.


In the coming year, VMP will focus on final schematic design and permitting in anticipation of breaking ground in early 2016.  When complete, McMillan will lead the area’s transformation from a crossroads of diverse and unrelated land uses to a walkable mixed-use community supporting and enhancing the fabric of existing neighborhoods.  Balancing an architecturally cohesive and distinct new construction element with a carefully considered preservation program and adaptive re-use strategy, McMillan is the next great community in our city.




WaPo Architecture Critic Roger K. Lewis recommends VMP Plan for the #NewMcMillan

McMillan plan combines preservation, urban design and inventive architecture

VMP Plan for the New McMillan“The fate of the McMillan Sand Filtration Plant has been the subject of heated controversy ever since the federal government closed the water purification facility in 1986 and sold the 25-acre site to the District of Columbia. During the years, dramatically differing opinions and ideas for transforming McMillan have led to multiple contrasting plans for the site.

But next month the destiny of the historically landmarked McMillan site may be determined and the disputes rendered moot. The D.C. Zoning Commission is reviewing the latest plan (, a well-conceived, pragmatic work of urban design and architecture.”

Read full article here.

Latest News

On November 22nd, Vision McMillan Partners and the Office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development jointly filed a Planned Unit Development– or PUD– application to the DC Zoning Commission.  The application included both a “Stage One” Master Plan and a “Consolidated Package” depicting the buildings planned for the phase one.  We will keep you updated on the public schedule moving forward, including hearings and meetings.  In the meantime, you can click here to view the application.  Simply click “Search by Applicant/Case Name” and enter “McMillan” as the search term.

Click here to view the Washington Business Journal’s recent coverage of the PUD application.

Take a minute to visit VMP on our new Facebook Page and “like” us to receive news and information via Facebook. We’ll be using the page to solicit your feedback on things like public art and park design and will keep you up-to-date on upcoming hearings, meetings and opportunities to engage in the process.

We look forward to seeing you on Facebook!

Tania Jackson

Neighborhood Outreach Coordinator


Approvals Progress on Halloween!

Yesterday the Historic Preservation Review Board voted unanimously to accept the Historic Preservation Office’s staff report, which recommended accepting the Master Plan and building design concepts, which moves the project forward to the Mayor’s Agent and the Zoning Commission.  We’ve been working long and hard on this project, refining the vision to reflect both community wants and desires, and HPRB’s recommendations so that McMillan will be a special place for everyone to enjoy.

Thank you to all of the community members and interested people who came to HPRB to testify today.  Thank you to all of you who have provided input and feedback; we truly appreciate your desire to make McMillan great.

If you haven’t seen it, now is a good time to check out our Vision Video, which made its debut today at HPRB.  And for more detailed information on the building designs, come to our community open house at St. George’s Episcopal Church on Saturday, November 16th anytime between 10AM and 1PM.

See you soon,

Tania Jackson

Neighborhood Outreach Coordinator

McMillan Advisory Group Meeting

Hello Again!

Last night,  the Vision McMillan team presented evolved Master Plan and revised building concepts proposed for the McMillan site that have been submitted to the Historic Preservation Review Board for hearing later this month.

In addition to walking through the presentation we posted here last week, we also talked about the potential for affordable senior housing onsite.  As those of you who have been following this project from inception know, it was always our intention to include dedicated affordable senior housing onsite. Unfortunately when we doubled the size of the park we effectively reallocated the resources needed for these affordable housing units.

Listening to community members, MAG members, and ANCs, we heard a renewed desire for affordable senior housing.  In reporting to the Council last July, we were directed to reinstate it.  Most notably Councilmembers Bowser and Bonds each asked us to find space for affordable senior housing, and they each said the District had the money to fund it.  To that end, we identified space above the grocery store, as one of three stems of the “E” shaped apartment building.  Last night, VMP promised that we would continue to work to find the resources necessary to develop affordable senior housing at McMillan.

We also agreed to host another design open house.  Mark your calendars for 10AM-1PM Saturday, November 16, 2013, location TBD.  We hope to see you there!

Tania Jackson
Neighborhood Outreach Coordinator
Vision McMillan Partners

HPRB Full Comments from 7/11/13

Dear McMillan Friends,

The Vision McMillan Partners team returned to the Historic Preservation Review Board to hear their full comments on the architectural plans that were presented on June 27th.  As you know, at that meeting we heard a few comments but were cut short because of time constraints.

At yesterday’s meeting the Board voted to approve our Master Plan and Design Guidelines, with Gretchen Pfaeler, the Board Chair, stating that the MasterPlan provided the appropriate framework for development of the site.

In her summation of the comments the Chair noted:

  • The design of the park and community center provides the organic look and feel that the board is seeking with regard to the site;
  • There needs to be a plan for better integrating Cell 14 into the office buildings on the north court (although she recognized the difficulty of such with DC Water’s  projected occupancy until 2022);
  • The architectural plan needs a unifying hand that brings together the adjectives and characteristics of the site.

We are excited to keep moving forward with our design plans on the site, and will come back to HPRB in the fall with building designs that address their concerns.  We will be sharing more with you as the plans progress.

Tania Jackson
Neighborhood Outreach Coordinator

McMillan Buildings Presented at HPRB

The Vision McMillan Partners team presented proposed building concepts to the Historic Preservation Review Board today.  The presentation, excerpted here, featured the first phase of new construction for the site:  two healthcare facilities, grocery store and apartment building, townhomes, community center and the public park.

After the team’s presentation, the board heard testimony from the community both in support and in opposition.  The Board deliberation was cut off at 5PM.  Five members spoke before the cut off, and VMP was invited back on July 11th.

What we heard in brief:

  • The park and community center were praised, particularly the south east edge with the stormwater pond, redesigned entrances with cell details and community center.
  • The Board members who spoke expressed concerns about the cohesion of building designs and talked about the need for more uniformity and that everything on the site should express how special the site is.
  • The Board hopes to see Cell 14 more activated and connected to the adjacent building.

VMP will return July 11th at noon to hear more, and will be sure to share what happens next.