Sunday, November 10, 2013

Another day, another large property auction in Congress Heights

Reports of Congress Heights' "gentrification" have been greatly exaggerated.

3109 Martin Luther King Ave SE is up for auction -- or was on November 7th. No idea if there was a winning bidder or who that bidder was. The starting price for this auction was $1,499,900. 

I was a little surprised to see this "business plaza" up for auction -- but not really. I have been saying for years that we need to interject more financial diversity in our income base. According to the listing below this is a "court ordered liquidation." No idea the reason why but considering that the day before, and around the corner the 4th Street Vistas subdivision went up for auction it makes you wonder. And makes me question again if Ward 8 really has a gentrification problem. It seems to me we have an economic development problem -- it's depressed and in desperate need of a boost. Less low-income tax credits,  more incentives to develop retail, amneties, and market-rate rental housing.  More "affordable" and low-income housing is not going to fix the problem, if it could it would have by now. Lord knows we have enough.

No idea if or how this auction will effect the current businesses in those storefronts but I wouldn't be the list bit surprised if a social service nonprofit or a church buys the entire commercial lot and rolls out more social service programs. Lord knows it has been done before. But it would be nice  -- and needed -- if this site could be redeveloped and modernized into a nice little retail plaza. There is some potential there is someone with some vision (and capital) can see it.

I say it again, instead of scaring people with tales of a systematic forced financial displacement that may (or may not) come, we need to address the problem we have right now with falling property values, foreclosures and short sales. The only silver lining in this cloud is that now really is the time to buy in Congress Heights -- although efforts are still underway to keep Ward 8 residents as long-term renters, and forever consumers of the city's poverty pimps.

Go HERE for the full Remax listing.
"AUCTION - 11/07/13 @ 1 PM! OWNER ORDERED LIQUIDATION - Incredible opportunity to own a 16-unit, 17,727 square foot, income-producing building with four storefronts. Proximity to Homeland Security Headquarters and Congress Heights Metro signals redevelopment of this building and the entire block is near. Auction company bidder and broker registration guidelines apply."

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