As aptly pointed out by Curbed DC, over the past couple of years “green” amenities — bike parking! EV charging! Butterfly habitats! — offered by new luxury rental and condo developments have swiftly transitioned from a unique “selling point” to an “expectation.”

And in Washington, D.C., just one of the several metros area where vertical gardens, LEED certification, and other eco-friendly trappings have become de rigueur, it would also appear that property developers are now vying to out pet-friendly each other.

The developers behind 2M, a sleek new LEED Gold development in Northeast D.C.’s super-hot/rapidly gentrifying NoMa (North of Massachusetts Avenue) neighborhood that begins pre-leasing this summer, have really upped the ante in the pet-friendly department with the addition of a communal dog that will be at the disposal of future residents who may not (yet) have a pooch to call their own. Yes, a communal dog.*

While its LEED Gold aspirations (Energy Star appliances, rooftop solar, rainwater harvesting, EV charging stations, easy access to public transportation, etc.) were apparently the focal point of 2M’s initial marketing blitz, Emmy, a 6-month-old English bulldog, will now be key in luring potential tenants to what’s undoubtedly the first development in all of NoMA — or as the Washington Post calls the nabe, “D.C.’s SimCity of Gentrification” — sporting an in-house rental dog of sorts.

Emmy, a cuddly mascot-cum-carrot who in addition to being pretty much adorable as they come would appear to have a mean Chex Mix addiction, will start taking up residence in the lobby of 2M this May as a means of attracting potential tenants and cute-ing up the joint.

Explains the Washington Post:

That’s right — there are communal gyms, pools, spas, game rooms, grills, roof decks and the like, but Emmy may be the first communal dog. Named to coincide with the building’s brand (two M’s), Emmy has a doghouse that is a replica of the building. Residents too busy for their own dogs will be able to pick her up in the lobby, take her upstairs to their apartment or for a walk, and return her as they would a library book, a DVD or bowling shoes.

Holli Beckman, a vice president with 2M's owner, William C. Smith and Co., explains the logic behind the puppy-as-sales-tool tactic: “I was sitting at a cafe one day, and we saw a puppy come in and everyone just stopped in their tracks and came alive. And it just dawned on me that everyone loves doggies and babies, right?”

Right. So does this mean a communal baby will follow at 2M?

Let’s just assume not.

At this point, it’s unclear how the presence of a communal dog will pan out at 2M aside from making dog-loving potential residents weak at the knees — and, ideally, move them to sign a lease. Will daily "Emmy time" be tacked on as a monthly amenity charge or are her services gratis? Are overnight snuggles an option? Will some serious drama and infighting be hatched amongst residents who are all vying for Emmy’s affection during “community yappy hours?” Will communal dogs be the new granite countertops?

Most importantly, how will Emmy herself adjust to a life of being passed around by a nonstop parade of adoring non-owners?

Via [Washington Post] via [Curbed DC]

*No, this is not an April Fools prank

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Matt Hickman ( @mattyhick ) writes about design, architecture and the intersection between the natural world and the built environment.

D.C. luxury development to entice renters with shared puppy
D.C.'s booming luxury rental market truly goes to the dogs with the addition of a 'communal' English bulldog pup at one new development.