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Bromptons at Cherrydale Nears Completion

by Katie Pyzyk April 29, 2011 at 4:11 pm 6,177 37 Comments

The long, strange trip for the project dubbed the Bromptons at Cherrydale may soon be coming to an end. The building at 3800 Lee Highway has been nearly seven years in the making, but condos there could go on sale before the start of summer.

Originally, all of the 22 condo units were under contract in 2004. But progress stalled in 2006, when the county issued a stop-work order due to the building being structurally unsound. The developer, Ed Peete Company was given the opportunity to remedy the issues or demolish the structure. After some waffling, Ed Peete chose demolition, but the deadline for that came and went in July 2008.

While this was being hashed out, the building sat vacant for years. A flurry of lawsuits followed, including those against contractors and engineers hired by Ed Peete. Ultimately the developer decided to keep the structure and reinforce it as part of a settlement reached in 2009.

Now, passing by the site provides a view of work crews buzzing in and out of the building and signs advertising the first floor retail space. Gone are the flapping sheets of plastic and insulation on the façade, the torn-up sidewalk has been replaced, and balconies have been affixed to the front of the units.

Project Manager Neil Winsten with R15, formerly the Ed Peete Company, says many improvements have been made to comply with the county’s requests of fixing issues such as stressed beams and walls. He says steel beams and support slabs have been added for reinforcement. With the new additions, Winsten believes this should be “one of the strongest buildings around.”

Winsten says he hopes the building will be finished by the end of May. The 22 condos are set to go on sale immediately after completion. Winsten says they will start looking for tenants to fill the first floor retail space around the same time.

As far as working with the county for all these years, Winsten says it has “gone pretty smoothly once we put the new plan into effect.”

Neighbors have been grumbling for years about the Bromptons project being an eyesore and dragging down property values. In response to their frustration, Winsten says, “We’re just about done so thanks for bearing with us. We haven’t wanted it to take this long either.”

  • Dude Where’s My Car

    GENT 1: “Well I don’t know whether I’d worry about strengthening that much. After all, they’re not meant to be luxury flats.” GENT 2: “Provided the residents are of light build and relatively sedentary, and, uh, given a spot of good weather, I think we’re onto a winner here.” — “The Architects Sketch,” Monty Python’s Flying Circus http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e2PyeXRwhCE

    • g_clifford_prout

      Well played!

  • Julia Q.

    It may be one of the strongest buildings around, but it’s still built on a stream. At least, that was the word was when I was working across the street from there around the time it was abandoned.

  • Ted williams

    The years-long delay has been intolerable and outrageous. Ed Peet should be tarred and feathered.

  • bred

    When will the utility polls be removed on the Lee Highway side of the project?

  • James, Arlington VA

    The Cherrydale ones are a owners nightmare…these things were exposed to the elements for years.

    The Bromptons down near Rosslyn along with those loft condos and these caused the Arlington area real estate value to get seriously distorted. The Mercer Lofts in Rosslyn are going for 1.5 million. The Gaslamp Condos are going for 850K+. Just ridiculous. Ed Peete and these other guys all distorted the market.

    I wouldn’t buy anything around this area…it’s just waiting to tank…especially if the government debt issue continues, this area will get really affected by government salaries being decreased along with jobs disappearing and government spending reigned in from contractors.

    Double dip is coming for the DC area. It’s going to be ugly.

  • Justin Russo

    What is a “brompton”?

  • From the only GOP in Arlington

    A “Brompton” is what you call a $1M townhouse that’s constructed as if it was a trailer home in Arkansas. I should know. I own one 🙁

    • James

      Do you seriously own one?

      I heard the construction around here for most of the condos and town homes is very spotty due to the amount of illegal labor they use. Also, when I heard they intentionally foul up things in order to get to come back and charge for repairs, that really irks me.

      When did you buy it and honestly…why if you felt it was poorly constructed or overpriced?

  • County Board Meeting Regular

    The Ed Peete Company principals sat outside the County Board Room smirking and laughing before this and the other Bromptons projects were rubber-stamped approved by the County Board.

  • From the only GOP in Arlington

    Yes, I own one of their properties. Poorly constructed and a money pit. Love the location and it looks nice — unless you look closely. All the windows leaked the first big rain when I moved in. Had to replace front door because it rotted so quickly. Still have massive outdoor brick issue that I can’t afford to fix — rotted wood everywhere. I could go on and on. UGH.

    • James

      So are you taking them to court over this? At least get the information out there and expose them more. The bad press will definitely make them possibly offer to repair that stuff for you.

  • SoCo Resident

    “R15, formerly the Ed Peete Company.” Hmm.. The County itself was responsible for this fiasco as much as Ed Peete. Where were the inspectors and where was the County action once the problems were found. What fool would possibly buy one of these after they were exposed to the elements for years? Peete’s Pershing Dr. build was loaded with problems too. Sadly, the site would have been perfect for the new fire station.

    • HonestBroker

      We should force each member of the County Board who ruled against building the new Cherrydale fire station on the site (Zimmerman, Favola, Fisette and Tejada), as originally planned, to purchase one of the new condos. And the townhouse owners who whined about the new fire station being built where the condo building is should also be forced to buy one of the condos.

      Yes, the townhouses and condo building are built on top of an old creek bed that runs under Lee Highway, heading north, and on down Oakland Street.

      The Bromptons of Cherrydale fiasco is emblematic of how Favola is beholden to local real-estate developers and why I hope she loses in her bid the state Senate.

  • The Native

    Typical misinformation, coupled with bad analysis. You all have no idea what you are talking about. Best to keep quite when you don’t have the facts.

  • dynaroo

    Um, the article explains what the county did, which was appropriate. The inspectors found the problem and ordered work stopped. The faulty work involved concrete – not something easily remedied, so the builder had to choose whether to tear it down or spend alot of money to fix it.

    What more do you want?

  • dynaroo

    I remember a report that some lady was going to open a kid-friendly coffee house in that building. I wonder if she found another space.

  • Clarendon Dweller

    Sorry you can’t afford to live here James. Many many people in this area have plenty of money to afford $1 million + condos. Try moving to Reston you may have better luck there.

  • Josh S

    *scratching head* *looking puzzled*

  • Eyes rolling back into my head……

  • dynaroo

    Half the town is built on creek beds.

  • RosRes

    The sky is falling! The sky is falling!

  • TGEoA

    Kid friendly coffee?

  • dynaroo

    You drink the coffee while the kid plays. The coffee place is kid-friendly, not the coffee.

  • Arneighbor

    Cheaper prices and less drunken idiots on the weekends. Sounds like a win.

    • Eponymous Coward

      Less drunken idiots? Is that “fewer” drunken idiots, or idiots who are merely less drunk than other drunken idiots?

      Because frankly, mildly intoxicated idiots are fine by me. But the teetotaler idiots are the worst.

  • LyonSteve

    I’ve been in some of the newer condos, and the walls are paper thin. You can hear people sneeze in adjacent units.

  • Boom! Roasted

    Looks ugly from the outside.

  • Barry

    The Cherrydale fire station has so far cost taxpayers $17.5 million.

  • chris

    Wow! I’m surprised at all the bashing… I guess everyone has an opinion. It’s only a shame that those with bad ones are sharing them. But then again why am I not surprised? You all pick the dumbest things to hype and most of you don’t have a clue what you are talking about.

    The building has to pass code for safety and functionality to be sold to the public bottom line. Ed Peete is better known for his unique design aesthetic. One or two bad experiences discussed here out of hundreds of homeowners who live inhis buildingd should tell you something. Oh, all of Arlington county is built on a HILL where the water flows into the Potomac River!

  • cheri

    It sounds like the builder is not financially stable. Does anyone have experience with what happens when you buy from a builder that may go bankrupt? What are the warranty issues? I am interested in buying, but afraid.

    • Suburban Not Urban

      Be really careful, I had a friend who’s developer went bankrupt, and I believe they had issues with title insurance and were told that they might have problem with future sales when prospective buyers did title research.

    • Arl2

      Ed Peete has also built condos in Shirlington, and many many in-fill lot houses. The houses all look the same-two story colonials with a driveway and parking garage at the back of the lot.

  • Cheri

    3800 lofts – I’ve toured this building- where is the trash facility? There is a tiny little room on the ground floor with 3 household sized trash bins and that’s it! Doesn’t seem to be any room in the ground floor layout for trash / recycling capability for 22 residential units plus all the commercial spaces. Where is the room for a cleaning crew? I can’t seem to find it on the layout. Where are packages going to go? Buyers should ask some hard questions. Serious doubts about this building…

    • El

      Developer decided to turn the condos into apartments instead. We were buyers. Just learned the news. Something is odd. Don’t think state approved the condo docs. Curious about the truth behind the story.

      • Cheri

        Despite the issues, we were also ready to purchase. This appears to be the 5th project that Ed Peete has done this- i.e. market them as condos and then pull the rug under potential buyers and turn them into apartments. Please let me know if you find out any more details.

  • I went to the open house and they already have half the units on contract and they have only been on the market for 3 weeks!

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