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DEVELOPMENTS IN REALTY
DURING CURRENT WEEK Important Deal Involving Two Apartment Houses. New Firms Formed?News of Alex andria County. A deal of very considerable magnitude, involving properties worth approximately ?12tQ.t)00, has just been consummated, re s-utlifig In the transfer of ownership of two large apartment buildings, the Alamo, situated on the east side of 12th street between M arid N streets north west, and the Harvard, located on the south skte of the street of that name, be tween i:?h and 14th streets, Columbia Heights. The Alaiqo.is a four-story building ^Ith handsome front of obsidian brick and stone, and contains twenty-four apart ments ranging from three rooms and b^th to five rooms and bath each. It oc cupies a lot sixty feet front and one hundred And forty feet deep to a rear alley. It was erected by Harry Ward man. the local builder, being rompleted in> Apr!'. 190s. after plans designed by A. H. Beers, architect. The Harvard apartment is a three-story structure of selected red handmade brick, with ornamental stone trimmings and cornice, and occupies a lot fifty feet front und ohe hundred and thirty-five feet deep. It contains twelve modern apartments of tire room* and bath each, and was con structed in 1WV? by Franklin T. Banner. The parties to the transaction were a well known local business man and Mr. Htaden Forrest. This important deal was negotiated by Willlgp, tilbbs & Daniel, iteal estate brokers, representing tho owner of the Har\ard. and the Moore & lllli real estate company, representing the owner of the Alamo. Two New Firms Formed. The attractiveness of the local realty fieJd from the standpoint of the real estate operator it- well illustrated by the announcement made this week or the formation of two more firms to engage in tht; business of "sale?, rents, loans and insurance." One of the firms was formed by the alliance of A. S. Gardiner and W. G. Dent under the title of Gardiner & Dent, Incorporated. They will open an office September 1 at 812 14th street northwest. As the tlrm proposes making a determined bid for the business of leas ing property, 1t has adopted as its motto t(ie phrase: "We can rent your vacant houses." Messrs. Gardiner and Dent enter the ftfia with ample experience, Mr. Gardiner hiving been affiliated with the tlrm of Mature.& Hill. Inc., for seven years, while Mt. t>ent ha* been one o. the moil suc cessful salesmen for Stone & Faifax for about six years. Mr. Gardiner is presi dent of th<; firm and Mr. Dent is secretary and treasurer. The Howe Building and Realty Com pany of the District of Columbia has been chartered under the laws of West Virginia, at Charleston, the capital of tllaT state, to conduct a general real estate business. The capital stock was given at $T?O.OOI>, and the Incorporators were George F. Graham, Francis M. Crts weil. Harry, T. L. Hoyle, William S. Graham and Addle A. Criswel), all of this city. The office of this firm has already been opened in the Evans building. Growth in Alexandria County. "The marvelous growth of Alexandria ? V 4 county still continues," said W. G. Colling, a realty operator of Clarendon. Va., yes terday, "and this great growth has cre ated a demand for churches and schools. The Baptist congregation of Clarendon and vicinity has acquired a piece of land on the Georgetown pike, practically in the heart of Clarendon, and in the near future will erect a substantial cluitch edifice. Members of the Catholic Church will soon begin building a house of worship upon ground recently donated by Charles Rauscher, near the electric rail way junction at Clarendon. "The Alexandria county school board has purchased two acres of land on the Georgetown pike, about three squares from the Clarendon electric station, and it is said work upon the new schoolhouse wilt begin shortly. The Masonic Temple is nearing completion. This is a tifteen thousand-doliar structure, and is located opposite the electric station at Clarendon. The new car barn, for the Falls Church railroad at L#acey station is nearly finished, and George H. Rucker is building nine modern dwellings in Rucker's addition to Clarendon. "Besides the above improvements, scores of houses in Cherrydale, Dominion Heights, Clarendon, Ballston. Arlington and other sections of the county have been erected during the present season. The outlook for the continued growth of the county is very bright indeed." Mr. Collins reports the follow ing re- j cent sales: For J. H. Mertx of Washington, three Clarendon lots to the Clarendon Baptist Church. For E- A. Wilson, two acres of land at Clarendon to the Alexandria . count y school board. For Mrs. Lydial L. Carper of Fairfax county, ten acres Of land to S. P. Wright of Barcroft, Va. For Mrs. Lydia L. Carper, house and one aero of land to Cecil Wiley. For J. A. Connor, house and two lots at Dominion Heights. Va. to S. L. and Anmie Gardiner, of Washington. For Oeorge H. Rucker, three lots in Rucker's addition to Clarendon to Wil liam Keltey of Washington. For Wood-Harmon Company, one Clar endon lot to Fannie l^ee Stevens. For Arthur J. Potter, one Clarendon lot to L/Ouiea Shellhora. Transactions in Local Realty. Shannon & Laichs, real estate brokers, report the sale of the three-story brick residence No. 24 Bryant street northwest for C. C. Mayer. This property has been sold to Tolbert Lanston. who will occupy it as his home. The consideration is un derstood to have been considerably more than 15.850. which was the price of ad joining houses in the row, which were disposed of by the same firm. William C. Souder has sold to Mrs. Har riet K. Covet lot 11, in square 817, Im proved by premises No. 9 5th street southeast. The house is a handsome three-story structure, with pressed brick bay window front, and has ten rooms, two baths and hot water heat. It oc cupies a lot nineteen feet front by a depth of nearly 120 feet. It is understood that in the neighborhood of $0,500 was paid for. the property, whdeh will be oc cupied by the purchaser. The sale was made through the renl estate offices of Wullge, Gibbs & Daniel. ;alawoarartmehtc .r<> .front Of ^ 1H 3treetkear.n 3tft?,e,t.nv/ Casino Theatre % ? BUILOiNG WILL GQST MILLION PLANS COMPLETED FOR SOUTH ERN COMMERCIAL CONGRESS. Structure on Site of Old St. Mat thew's Church to Be Started in Near Future. Announcement was made this week on the authority of Q. Grosvenor Dawe, man aging director of the Southern Commer cial Congress, that arrangements are now making for the erection of a $1,000,000 building as the headquarters of the con gress. The ground has been purchased and the money secured. "Plans are being drawn by T. F. Schneider, a local architect, and the work of construction is expected to be commenced within the next two or three months. It is hoppd to have the build ing ready for occupancy within a year from the start. Thus It will be seen that the work of providing a permanent home for the Southern Commercial Congress will at once proceed instead of waiting the fruition oi the plan for raising a fund of $1,000,000 by1 1,000 firms or persons sub scribing $1,000 each, which was the orig inal proposition. The site of the Southern Commercial Congress is the southeast corner of 15th and H. streets, now occupied in part by old St. Matthfw's Church. It fronts for 148 feet on H street and for 150 feet on 13th street, and contains 22.200 square feet, or almost half an acre. Diagonally across H street is the beautiful Union Trust building, which contains the tem porary offices of the Southfern Commer cial Congress: the George Washington University stands on the southeast, and the Shoreham Hotel occupies the remain ing corner. Inception of Congress. The Southern Commercial Congress had its inception at a convention of the secre taries of southern commercial organiza tions which was held at Chattanooga, Tenn., in August. 1008, for the purpose of organizing the Southern Commercial Secretaries' Association. There the thought was voiced that there should be a better and fuller understanding among the men of the north and the south of their relatiohs to each other, and of their relations to the nation in its growth. Other suggestions and ideas were ad vanced and discussed with the result that a program was drawn up for a public interpretation of southern resources and southern aspirations. It was resolved by the newly formed association that "there shall be a southern commercial congress," but as G. Grosvenor Dawe, secretary of the Commerra! Club of Montgomery, Ala., and chairman of the committee of arrangements of the congress, to whom the greater part of the credit for the accomplishment Is due, says: "Think upon the courage of these men. Up to this date there had never been a permanently successful commercial gath ering of broad scope in the south. We knew that. We knew that failures had followed close upon the heels of effort. Yet these men, strong in the faith that there was an immeuse future for tho south, and strong in the faith that the. | north wanted to know the truth about : the south, and strong in the conviction that a plain, simple utterance of what we have would bring to us th? recogni tion to which the vast south is entitled, in that we stepped forward toward the task laid before us." And the southern secretaries stepped forward so briskly and confidently and wrought so well, that December 7 and 8 last, or within four months' time, the Southern Commercial Congress was sum moned out of the land of visions into the realm of fact at a convention held at the New Willard Hotel of representatives from sixty-four commercial organizations from fifteen states. BUILDING ASSOCIATIONS GAIN. | Big Increase in Membership and | Assets Since Last Meeting. The seventeenth annual meeting of the League of Local Building and Loan As sociations was held in Philadelphia, July 29 and The secretary's report showed \ a total of 5,300 local building and loan ! associations throughout the United States, j with a membership of 1,020,257 and assets I amounting to .<784.17.V753. The member- j ship increased Ly 80.138 and the assets i oy $52,067,307 during the year. The total ! receipts of the organization were $510, 721,576.- The loans on mortj.ra#es were $134,08^170 a* against $200,925,072 in. the preceding r ear. The cost of transacting business was $5,548,004, or .70 of 1 per cent of the assets. The annual report of President \V. G. Weeks of Louisiana showed that despite the depression that existed during the seventeen months that had elapsed since the last convention the business of the organizations proceeded as usual and that not a homestead had failed or been forced Into liquidation. The assets increased $50,000,000 In 1907 and over $40,OOl?,OOJ last year. . "CITY BEAUTIFUL" CAMPAIGN. Regulations in Berlin to Secure Uniformity in Building. Incident to the campaign toward the "c-lty beautiful," which Is engaging con siderable attention in Washington at the present time. It is interesting to note that the city of Berlin is taking effective measures to insure the success of a program of city beautlficatlon. In ac cordance with an ordinance approved by the municipal authorities, permits for new buildings in many portions of Berlin may be refused hereafter on purely esthetic grounds, even where the requirements re garding fire protection and sanitation are satisfactorily filled. Under the Berlin regulations, which are the subject of lively discussion, plans for new buildings and proposed alterations of any kind can be approved only In case they correspond with the general style and character of the surroundings. New structures must "not impair the characteristic Rspect of the street view of which they form a pert." The neighborhood* of certain historic churches are- especially designated as lo calities where partloular care must be taken as to the impression created upon the eye by the entire perspective. Berlin has now a population of 2.000,000. Old as the city is the larger number of buildings have been constructed within the last fifteen years. ? Bach- Ever tell her a lie? Chumley?Didn't I say I tell her every thing??Spare Moments. SMALL HOUSES A.E POPULAR EASY PAYMENT PLAN HELPS MANY HOME BUYERS. New Row in 5th Street Northeast Placed on Market by Howen stein Company. A steadily continuing demand for small houses at reasonable prices has resulted in a boom in this sort of building In the District, and now each section of the city offers opportunities to the homeseek er, and realty operators generally are having manorial success in finding pur chasers for the little homes. The evolu tion in .sales methods also has been a strong factor in securing the popularity ? I of houses of this e!a.-s, because the small j cash payments required when any pros i pective purchaser takes possession, aided i further "by the system1 of accepting"! monthly installments until the entire > equity lia^ been acquired, have, started j hundreds of families, on the road toward ; owning homes. One of the best examples of this sort of ! construction in the more recent building in the northeast is the row of houses in V street, Nos. 27 to 39, inclusive, which were built and are offered for sale by the' H. R. Howenstein Company of 1314 F street. These homes are of the colonial type, and each stands on a lot twenty feet in width. All have large double colonial, porches, and contain six rooms and hath.. The fact that these dwellings are of steel construction is a strong guarantee of their solidity, while the hardwood finish: and planed and oiled floors add much to' their attractiveness. Each house has I ldtrge front and rear yards, a furnace heating system and is equipped with the finest sanitary plumbing. The houses are offered for sale at $11,650 each; ACTIVITY IN PHILADELPHIA. Building Becords for Month of July Show Big Gains. The report of 'the Philadelphia bureau of building inspection for July shows that the value of the work tor which permits were issued during the month was 9983,-. 110 in excess of the value of the construc tion begun in July, 1908. The permits granted last month covered 1,541 opera tions. costing $3,897,500, against 1,298 oper. ations, coating ?2,912.480, in July of last year. The total value of the work done during the current year to the end of July shows a total of *25.792,340 spread over 10.956 operations, Compared with $16,679,990 and 7.!H)8 operations for the corresponding period of 190H. Thus it will be scpn there were .<!1.112, 350 more invested in building during tTi'e last seven months than was spent in the same period a year ago; and It is' particularly worthy of note th&t the amount' invested in construction so far this year falls short only $651,135 of the expenditure ($20,443,475) during the first seven months of 1906, Philadelphia's ban ner yeir and a year when industrial en terprise of every character" was at its height. The investment in building was approximately $40,000,000 during 1906. SMALL HOMES POPULAR. * ... . v - j -~ij COlOJfXAL HOUSES IN Y STBEE.T NORTHEAST. ?loor Elan. OfNew Theatre ~ cjHOWiWq TvJMEROU3 EXITsJ FIRE HAZARD REDUCED TO A MINIMUM IN WASHINGTON New Business Houses, "Bulwarks'' Against Con ?r '? f lagration, Add Stability to Investments in Down-Town Realty. i i Fireproof construction of all passes of I business structures, and even of occa sional private homes, has received such impetus incident to the rapid progression in building methods that every develop ment in the art of protecting buildings from the destroying element is hailed with interest by the structural engineer, by the investor and by the general pub lic. Largely by reason of its wide streets, which automatically check the spreading of fire, and its excellently or ganized tire department, and still more because of its drastic building regula tions, which, efficiently enforced, reduce the fire risk, Washington has never ex perienced a conflagration. Old buildings there are in plenty, constructed in the days before fire-prevention methods were khown, but almost without exception the fires which have occurred in them have been confined by the fire department to the structure in which the flames found origin. And as th" business houses of former years yield to the inarch of prog ress and are demolished to make space section which docs not boast a building the conflagration risk is constantly dimin ishing. At the present time there is scarcely one city block in the down-town section which does not boast a building, properly fireproofed, according to the building regulations, whose stout walls would suffice an a bulwark against the spreading of the flames in event a fire of serious proportions should occur. Taken altogether, the wide streets, the strong fire department, the ample water supply, the well drawn and well enforced building regulations and the number of "fireproof bulwarks" have operated to give to the citizens and business men of Washington at least one outward and un mistakable sign of the safety of the city, in that the fire insurance rates, estab lished by the underwriters, arc as low as the lowest among large municipalities. Safety at Centers of Congestion. Vastly more important than the actual reduction of the fire risk from a commer cial standpoint is the question of the safety of. human lives in all the centers where congestion occurs?in the theaters, in the public schools and in the stores and large office buildings. Other cities have passed through harrowing experi ences, und ufter doing all in its power to ameliorate the suffering in each case, Washington lies taken advantage of the object lessons afforded. At the present time, it may be safely said, the Capital city has taken every reasonable precau tion against such disasters as over whelmed Baltimore and Bo.'ton in the great conflagrations which devastated whole squares; as plunged Chicago and the whole country in grief when hun dreds of lives were sacrificed in the Iro quois Theater disaster. Then, too, oc curred the more recent holocausts in a private hall in Boyertown, Pa., when a moving picture machine caused a fire in which rflany lives were snuffed out, and til Cleveland, Ohio, where scores ot i school children were crushed in panic and burned to dekth. Washington has no public schools In which the doors open inward, and, even though a fire should occur in one of the local Institutions of learning, there would be no difficulty in marching the children to safety through ample and well ar ranged exits. Similarly in the theaters the elements of safety have received close attention, and In this respect the observations made by A. C. Mayer of this city, on a tour through most of the large towns In the middle Atlantic states, ere of interest. Mr. Mayer is manager of the new Casino Theater which is in course of construction at 7th and !*' streets, and his trip was for the specific purpose of gathering information re garding the methods of protecting thea ter audiences from danger of fire. Compliment to District Officials. Speaking of the various phases of his tour, Mr. Mayer said: "I cannot retrain from voicing a compliment to the officials of the government of the District of Co lumbia because of the wise regulations they have prepared with regard to the ater construction and arrangement and because of the closo inspection service maintained to secure observance of tlie laws by the builders. In a dozen cities, and In twice that many playhouses. I failed to find a single instance where the precautionary measures were equal to those In the National Capital. "It is not only in guarding against pos sibility of fire that those charged with the construction of theaters and with the handling of theater crowds must exercise the greatest care. The mere utterance of the word 'Fire' is more to be dreaded than an actual outbreak of flames, be ta us? '.lie records of all theater disasters show that panics have cost more lives than fires. This was so at the Iroquo's Theater. It was so at Boyerstown, Pa "I was in a theater in a neighboring city the other evening. Our party had box seats, and naturally were the last in leaving the house when the performance ended. I have been in every theater in Washington, and no matter how great the crowd 1 do not think a single one of the orchestras playeu the usual c oalng march lor more than a minute or two before the last of the audience was out of the doors. This, too, without use of a single emergency exit. Yet In this out of-town tiiea er I know we were five minutes, if not longer, in reaching the street. There were few emergency exits, and the aisles were of the same width from end to end. Requirements of Local Regulations. "In Washington we are required to have the aisles In the shape of a slender letter 'VY wl h the wide end at the rear, and the regulations compel the allowance of ample 'standing-room' space, so that an audience in a rush to escape any real or Imagined danger could spread out upon noaring the exits." The new Casino Theater will be a model of its k^nd, as the plans show a total of twen y-elght exits, nineteen of them serving the main auditorium and nine the balconies. All of tne doors which do not open upon the street will lead to fireproof alleys at each side Of the house and thence into F! street.