Mount Vernon Triangle
A President Everyone Can Support
Kenyattah Robinson, the new president and CEO of the Mount Vernon Triangle Community Improvement District (MVT CID), is ushering in the next era. A longtime MVT resident, he wants to help his neighborhood continue to thrive without losing its sense of community. “In addition to its authenticity, Mount Vernon Triangle has a number of intrinsic assets, positive attributes, and core strengths – including our rich past, distinct inclusivity, and centralized location and connectivity – that we must continue to cultivate during our maturation into a self-sustaining community,” Robinson said.
A native of New Orleans, Robinson earned a BA from Louisiana State University and an MBA from Cornell and has worked in real estate finance, policy, and public affairs for 17 years. He moved from Columbia Heights to MVT in 2008. “I've always been intrigued by neighborhoods and communities that were welcoming and authentic but for whatever reason had yet to achieve their full potential,” Robinson explained. “You might say that I have an eye for investing in neighborhoods and communities that are on the path of growth and possess lots of promise and potential.”
Robinson has spoken at regional and national forums on public-private partnerships and on enhancing building-energy efficiency, topics that may come in handy as MVT continues to grow. During his tenure, he plans to focus on preserving and enhancing green spaces, ensuring a balance among the commercial, residential, and retail offerings, and strengthening the sense of community through events such as the FRESHFARM farmstand.
“We will also soon begin to honor and celebrate the rich history of the Triangle through our ‘Real History | Real Life’ campaign as part of a larger effort to bring context and culture into the fabric of the neighborhood, even as we welcome new development,” Robinson shared.
MVT CID’s board chair, Dr. Joseph Evans, welcomed Robinson, saying, “Kenyattah impressed us all with his passion for our community, his commitment to working in partnership with our public and private stakeholders, and his unique qualifications to lead the MVT CID forward in its next chapter.”
Contact MVT CID at 457 Massachusetts Ave. NW, at www.mvtcid.org, or call 202-216-0511.
Spring in the Triangle
On Saturday, May 7, MVT kicks off the season with the return of the FRESHFARM farmstand and Springfest. The community will welcome the season with music, children’s games, craft projects, face painting, and organic produce.
Returning to the Fifth and K streets plaza for another year is Chicano Sol Farm from Blain, Pa. The farm curates and sells various items including fruits and vegetables sourced from organic and conventional farms, breads, baked goods, and eggs, as well as products from artisanal producers in the FRESHFARM Markets network.
FRESHFARM is a nonprofit that promotes sustainable agriculture and improves food access and equity. In DC it operates eight producer-only farmer’s markets that provide vital economic opportunities to local farmers and food producers. Outreach programs educate the public about food and related environmental issues. In addition to the farmstand, the music, and the children’s activities, Springfest attendees will enjoy complimentary popcorn and lemonade and sample tastings from L’Hommage Bistro Francais and Texas de Brazil.
Springfest is a community affair sponsored by 450K Apartments, Lyric 440K Apartments, the Meridian Mount Vernon Triangle Apartments, Texas de Brazil, and Boston Properties. The farmstand will operate from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. every Saturday through Oct. 29. Look for various community events in the coming months.
Everything Old Is New Again
At its 455 Eye Street project, Equity Residential is blending MVT’s history with the future. The mixed-use residential project, scheduled to be completed in 2017, will combine converted townhouses with an 11-story building to create another home for prospective MVT residents. According to Ben Stoll, vice president at Equity, “The historic component of this project offered Equity a unique opportunity to create a distinctive apartment project in the Triangle. The industrial qualities of the project combined with the newer elements is an exciting combination.”
Designed by Hickok Cole Architects, 455 Eye Street will have 174 units including four two-bedroom, two-bathroom apartments inside the converted townhouses. The rental apartments in the 11-story building will range from studios to two-bedroom units, with the average apartment size approximately 740 square feet. The building will have parking. Its 2,000 square feet of retail space “will further activate Eye Street and provide the neighborhood an additional restaurant option and gathering space,” Stoll explained.
“We have taken great care to both respect and highlight the historic elements of the existing buildings, which date back to the late 1800s,” Stoll said. “We are hopeful that the unique architecture contributes to the character of the neighborhood.” He added, “Mount Vernon Triangle is a neighborhood that offers the residents in our buildings terrific access to restaurants, employers, and public transportation.”
Contact Equity Residential at 1500 Massachusetts Ave. NW, Suite 25, at www.equityapartments.com, or call 202-971-7111.