New restaurant from Unconventional Diner team coming to Capitol Crossing

10/10/19 – Capitol Crossing, the massive development being built over Interstate 395 in the District, has landed its first retail tenant.

The Ardent, a Mediterranean restaurant, has signed a lease for 200 Massachusetts Ave. NW. That building was the first to deliver at Capitol Crossing, which when it’s finished will include 2.2 million square feet across five buildings.

The 10,000-square-foot restaurant comes from Unconventional Diner owner Eric Eden and its chef, David Deshaies. The entrance to the restaurant will be off the pedestrian walkway between 200 and 250 Massachusetts Ave. NW, with the restaurant having visibility to Massachusetts Avenue in its location on the northwest corner of the building.

200 Massachusetts Ave. NW is already home to the American Petroleum Institute, which leased 75,000 square feet, and a WeWork, which has 111,000 square feet.

The next building to deliver at Capitol Crossing will be 250 Massachusetts. Development of the three additional buildings to the south will proceed in phases.

The project, from New York’s Property Group Partners, is one of the largest commercial real estate developments ever undertaken in the District. It involved constructing a platform over I-395 in order to reconnect the street grid between Capitol Hill and East End.

It has had some trouble lining up tenants for its retail space, however. New York restaurateur Danny Meyer was originally slated to open a location of Union Square Cafe and another, more casual outlet in the building, but he pulled out of that deal earlier this year. Food hall operator Politan Group is also working on a deal there, but we’re told that has also fallen through.

The Mediterranean menu at The Ardent will be cooked in part over a large-scale wood-burning oven and the design will include Murano glass chandeliers and a color scheme of “Mediterranean blues and sunset pinks,” according to the release. The restaurant will open in late 2020.