965 Florida Ave NW
MV+A played a pivotal role in the planning and design of the upcoming Whole Foods Market at 965 Florida Ave NW in the Shaw neighborhood of DC. Working with a myriad team of architects and engineers led by MRP Realty Inc and Ellis Development Group Inc, an approximately 45,000 sf store was planned to occupy the entirety of the ground floor with the exception of the lobby for the residential apartments above. Two entrances along Florida Avenue provide access to the store with very different user experiences ‑ one ushers customers through the pub at the northwest corner of the store and provides the closest access point to Howard University to the north; while the second entrance further south on Florida Avenue functions as the main entrance for both pedestrians from the south as well as customers arriving from the basement parking levels. Besides providing access to the store beyond, both entrances provide access to a mezzanine along Florida Avenue. The mezzanine takes advantage of the rapid rise of the sidewalk along Florida avenue by providing an outdoor dining terrace a few feet above the quickly sloping grade. With activity at both entrances and the raised outdoor dining terrace engaging the street, the Florida avenue facade of the store will be a beehive of activity in the neighborhood. Above the store, 428 apartments spread across nine stories of distinctive residential design feature as much as 30% affordable units and will provide an enviable address for urban living in the city. Baltimore based architecture firm Hord, Coplan, Macht designed the residential building and are serving as the Architect of Record for the project.
Being DC’s retail experts, MV+A has the opportunity to collaborate with many of the best architects in the country on mixed-use projects. Our clients include us on their design teams to provide the retail expertise needed to make these projects a success, knowing that having the best possible design team, working together, brings a creative energy to the project that a single firm might not achieve.
Collaboration challenges us to constantly work at the top of our game, bringing our expertise and vision to the team, without expecting total design control. Ultimately, this brings about the most exciting, vibrant developments for our clients and the city.
Clients continue to rely on our retail expertise, and understand that we know how to be team players, focusing on the quality of the design and sharing of ideas, not looking for individual credit on a project. We believe that working with other talented architects only makes our work better.