Thursday, January 20, 2005

Go West

While a part of me will be saddened to see the former Capital property developed, it's one of the few strips of green left on West Street in Annapolis, another part of me realizes it's probably for the best. A Virginia-based developer intends to build 63 condos and 7 single-family homes on the 2-acre ($2.5 million) site. Additionally, at least 7 of the condos will be "affordable housing" units, as a result of the City's recent passage of an affordable housing law [pdf].

Inner West Street is really blossoming, and it's an exciting prospect. Several historic houses were preserved at West Village, and have now been converted into live/work buildings, with rental housing perched above salons, boutiques, and a coming restaurant. The Park Place development, an enormous project, is underway, and will likely serve as a jewel on Westgate Circle. And, it's only a matter of time before the rest of the corridor follows suit. It's been a near model partnership between local entrepeneurs and city government, to save historical charm, promote local business, and encourage dense (and in at least a few instances, affordable) housing where it should be, in our urban areas, where infrastructure exists, and vital services (e.g., libraries, buses, restaurants) are just a short walk away. Kudos to those who have made this delicate dance work.

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