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Mayor Bowser Celebrates Transformation of MLK Gateway in Historic Anacostia

Wednesday, January 8, 2020
Groundbreaking Begins Renovation of Historic Business Corner in Ward 8

(Washington, DC) – Today, Mayor Muriel Bowser celebrated the groundbreaking at MLK Gateway, a renovation of the historic retail buildings at the intersection of Good Hope Road and Martin Luther King, Jr. Avenue, SE that will bring office, retail, and other neighborhood amenities to Ward 8.

“Today, we are continuing the transformation of this historic neighborhood by revitalizing the gateway of the Anacostia business area,” said Mayor Bowser. “My Administration never gave up on this project because we know it will help us bring jobs, housing, and new amenities to Ward 8. We thank all of our community and private sector partners for making this project a reality.”

Phase One of the project includes the renovation of the historic retail buildings at 1201-1215 Good Hope Road, SE including a two-story office addition above the retail. The office addition of 20,000 square feet will be occupied by D.C.-based Enlightened, a leading cyber-technology company, bringing 150 employees from their downtown DC location to Anacostia. Phase Two of the project will consist of a new building construction at 1909-1913 Martin Luther King. Jr. Avenue, SE with street-level retail and multi-story office above.

“The MLK Gateway project is an example of what is possible when residents, the DC government, and the private sector come together,” said Ward 5 Councilmember Kenyan McDuffie, Chairperson of the Business and Economic Development Committee. “This project will not just revitalize this prominent intersection and gateway to historic Anacostia, it will bring jobs with a new technology company, Enlightened, Inc., and a small business incubator to provide training and expand residents access to greater economic opportunity.”

The development of the MLK Gateway is a collaboration of DC Government and the private sector, including the Office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development, the Department of Housing and Community Development, the Menkiti Group, LISC, CityFirst Bank, PNC and Enlightened. The project was financed using a combination of $4.25 million in New Market Tax Credits and $3.3 million in Opportunity Zone equity. The project also received a $700,000 grant from the DC Government’s Neighborhood Prosperity Fund.

“MLK Gateway demonstrates what we can deliver when the public and private sectors work together to make big, strategic investments and use new tools like Opportunity Zones to support existing communities,” said John Falcicchio, Interim Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development. “We look forward to bringing this historic corner of the Anacostia business center back to life again.”

“We are excited to be part of this historic project and are grateful for the trust that our city, our partners, and the community have placed in us,” said Bo Menkiti, Founder and CEO of The Menkiti Group. “We look forward to delivering this project that honors the past, engages the present and paves the way for the future of the Anacostia neighborhood.”