DC Contest: Creative Ideas for an Urban Live-Work Loft

If you've lived in DC long enough, you've surely been AMAZED at the transformation of the Meridian Hill/Malcom X Park area of Columbia Heights. Even a few years ago it was better known for its crime scenes than its trendy new lofts and modern mixed-use spaces. However, times have changed, and one of the advantages of being part of a newly revitalized area is the opportunity to participate in its development. One such opportunity is in the intriguing contest, hosted by developer Jair Lynch, which we spotted on DC Urban Turf. Here's the deal...

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CEO, Jair Lynch's goal for the live-work spaces is to encourage small business growth in the up-and-coming neighborhood. With this hope in mind, he designed the contest to be open to the public. Ideas need not be complex, and contestants are not required to have any design experience or expertise.

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The basic premise of the contest is to come up with an idea that best utilizes the 1,600 sq. ft. of the three live-work loft units in the newly built Solea, located on the corner of 14th and Florida Ave, NW. The ground floor is designated for storefront retail facing Florida Ave., while the lower level is designed for residential use, complete with kitchen, bath, and washer and dryer.

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There are two $500 cash prizes, one for the design with the most votes from the public, and one selected by the developer to become the model used for the live-work units. Jair Lynch is working with MobFuse to transform contestant ideas into viable, buildable designs. While the cash may not seem like much, the glory of impacting this recently-crowned DC hot spot may well be.

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To submit an idea, visit the Define Live-Work contest site.

To see more pictures of the live-work units, check out DC Urban Turf's article here.

To learn more about the Solea, visit their website.

(Images: DC Urban Turf and the Solea)