Anacostia Waterfront Initiative

HR&A guided the work of six nationally renowned planning firms to create the Anacostia Waterfront Framework Plan. We also led the planning and implementation work for the Anacostia Waterfront’s newest district: Capitol Riverfront.

On behalf of the District of Columbia’s Office of City Planning, in partnership with city and federal agencies HR&A worked with urban design teams to create a development framework for a ten mile stretch along the Anacostia Waterfront. Our work included analyzing the opportunities and challenges for development, performing economic analyses to demonstrate the viability of the Framework Plan, building consensus for the vision among numerous public agencies, and coordinating substantial public outreach efforts.

The Capitol Riverfront is one of the District of Columbia’s most successful neighborhood transformation efforts in the last decade. This 350-acre neighborhood surrounding the Washington Navy Yard has attracted more than 12 million SF of mixed-use development and more than $3.3 billion in public and private development that is completed or currently under construction. There are currently 4,000 residents in market-rate and affordable housing living in the Capitol Riverfront, a daytime population of 35,000 workers, and new waterfront parks. The Capitol Riverfront BID estimates that 2.6 million people attended events at Nationals Park, the Navy Museum, and the Yards Park during 2012.


HR&A was the real estate and public policy advisor for the planning and development of the waterfront district surrounding the Nationals Ballpark, now known as the Capitol Riverfront.

  • Managed an urban design team to create a master plan for the Capitol Riverfront;
  • Prepared a development framework for The Yards, Forest City Washington’s ongoing development at the Southeast Federal Center site, immediately adjacent to the Ballpark;
  • Conducted a feasibility analysis of the development plans and identified the preferred alternative;
  • Supported the District of Columbia in creating a new Tax Increment Finance (TIF) district around the Nationals Ballpark, which provided $1.8 billion in financing for the completion of the Ballpark in 2008, further investment in public infrastructure, and a community benefits fund for neighborhood revitalization; and
  • Managed a developer solicitation process.

The Anacostia Waterfront Framework Plan won an AIA Honor Award for Regional and Urban Design in 2005. According to the Washington, D.C. Mayor’s Office, the Anacostia Waterfront Initiative has catalyzed over $8 billion in economic development investment to date. In October 2017, the revitalized southwest waterfront opened to the public as The Wharf – a mixed-use development by Hoffman-Madison Waterfront LLC.