A Rich History

And Still Thriving

Sustaining The Neighborhoods We Love

Firmly Planted DC Roots For Over 50 Years
About Us

1968

WC Smith, originally William C. Smith and Co., was founded in 1968 by William C. Smith, Sr. He was previously a Vice President at Frank S. Phillips Inc. For two years he had been considering striking out on his own. In July 1968, he set up his own company and rented an office at 927 15thStreet NW. By the end of the month, he had three employees. The company grew slowly but steadily, primarily through word of mouth and the reputation of Mr. Smith. A big bump came in 1973 when the company took on the management of the Alonzo O Bliss properties,10 buildings with 900 units. The company had a reputation as an “apartment doctor,” taking difficult buildings and turning them around. Since 1968, the company has grown dramatically, creating a development division, investing in commercial, retail and luxury residential, and expanding the property management division

1969

“The Shop” (now called Property Services) opens in Adams Morgan: Property Services provides repairs and renovations for WC Smith managed properties throughout the city. 

1969

Nancy Smith(Miller) joins the company

1973 – 1977

1973

WC Smith begins managing Bliss portfolio, ten buildings with 900 units

1973

Chris Smith joins the company

1974

Home Rule Act: Congress passes the Home Rule Act, allowing DC residents to elect a Mayor and 13member Council. The first Mayor is Walter Washington.

1976

The Metrorail Opens: The first section is the red line from Farragut North to Rhode Island Ave, opens

1976

John Ritz joins the company

1977

The average rent at a WC Smith property is $155/month

1978 – 1982

1978

WC Smith acquires 1401 Sheridan St NW

1979

WC Smith purchases Hillside Terrace in southeast DC

1979

Marion Barry is elected mayor 

1980

The company acquires 222 St. Paul St, which later became the Tremont Plaza Hotel. WC Smith’s first purchase in Baltimore, this property was mixed-use with apartments and commercial office space on the top floor. In 1986, WC Smith renovated the building and converted the apartments (and later the commercial space) into an all-suite hotel. 

1981

WC Smith holds its first company picnic

1982

WC Smith gets its first computer

1982

WC Smith purchases Hilltop House, a 91unit building in Columbia Heights

1983

The average rent at a WC Smith property is $258/month

1983 – 1987

1984

The Tremont Hotel in Baltimore opens. WC Smith bought the property at 8 East Pleasant in Baltimore (adjacent to the Tremont Plaza) and converted into an all-suite hotel.

1984

The first Mac computer is offered for sale

1984

WC Smith acquires Jetu, 426 units in northeast DC

1986

The company headquarters move to new offices at 1220 L Street NW

1986

Washington Commercial Services, WC Smith’s first subsidiary company, is formed

1987

Washington Heating and Cooling, a WC Smith subsidiary company, is formed

1987

Kelley Smith (Worman) and Tracey Smith (Patch) join the company

1988 – 1992

1989

WC Smith acquires the Twin Oaks apartments

1989

WCS Construction and the WCS Development team are established

1991

WC Smith acquires and begins the transformation of the Villages of ParklandsParklands consists of 1300 units on 54 acres in southeast DC. In addition to renovating the apartments, the company builds the city’s first splash park, a daycare center, and upgrades the adjacent shopping strip.

1991

WC Smith forms District Electric Services, a subsidiary company

1991

The Summer Youth Employment Program (SYEP) beginsSYEP provides work opportunities for youth living in WC Smithmanaged buildings. For over 25 years, these salaried positions have provided over 1200 young people with opportunities to gain work experience while simultaneously participating in workshops on health and wellness, college counselling, life coaching, and community service.

1991

Debut of the World Wide Web

1991

Sharon Pratt Kelly is elected Mayor of DC

1993 – 1997

1993

WC Smith acquires the Dupont Apartments

1995

The company completes the renovation of the 353unit Washington View Apartments, in southeast DC

1995

Baltimore Orioles Cal Ripken Jr. breaks Lou Gehrig’s record of 2,131consecutive games played, earning the title of “The Iron Man”

1995

Marion Barry is elected Mayor

1997

THEARC development starts. WC Smith incorporates a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, Building Bridges Across the River(BBAR) to oversee the development and management of THEARC, The Town Hall Education Arts Recreation Campus. It took several years of fundraising before construction could begin.

1997

The MCI Center (now the Capital One Arena) opens at Gallery Place, sparking the revitalization of downtown DC

1998 – 2002

1998

WC Smith buys The TremontGrand in Baltimore. Previously the Grand Lodge of the Maryland Masonic Temple, WC Smith saved the building from a planned demolition and restored the historic building as a special event space.

1999

Anthony Williams is elected Mayor of DC

2002

The 210 Townhomes at Oxon Creek are completed. WC Smith created the first homeowner’s club in the area to assist prospective homebuyers with the process of qualifying for a mortgage and purchasing their first home. Prices ranged from $99,000 to $159,000.

2003 – 2007

2003

The company builds its first office building at 1100 New Jersey Ave SE. The following year the corporate office moves in.

2003

WC Smith forms the Canal Park Development Association to plan and develop Canal Park

2005

THEARC celebrates its grand opening with ten nonprofit partners: the Washington Ballet, the Levine School of Music, the Corcoran School of Art, Covenant House, Children’s National Medical Center, the Parklands Community Center, the Boys and Girls’ Club, the Washington School for Girls, Building Bridges Across the River, and Trinity University

2005

The Montreal Expos are brought to DC to become the Washington Nationals

2007

WC Smith and 800 volunteers begin the first phase of the Oxon Park revitalization, cleaning the park, installing new playgrounds, repairing basketball courts and rebuilding the outdoor amphitheater

2007

Apple produces the first iPhone

2007

Adrian Fenty is elected Mayor of DC

2008 – 2012

2008

Nationals Park opens in the Capitol Riverfront

2008

WC Smith develops Asheford Court, 75 singlefamily homes

2008

WCS Development oversees the establishment of Ward 8’s newest streetlevel retail shopping plaza, The Shops at Park Village. The Shops includes a 65,000 SF fullservice supermarket and a sitdown restaurant.

2010

 WC Smith renovates 3333 Wisconsin Avenue, a luxury, multifamily apartment complex

2011

 Phase I of Sheridan Station is complete. It is the first multifamily building in the city to receive LEED Platinum designation. The last phase was completed in 2015.

2011

The company rebuilds the baseball field at Oxon Park, initiating the second phase of Oxon Run revitalization

2011

Vincent Gray is elected Mayor of DC

2012

Canal Park opens, managed by a WC Smith nonprofit subsidiary, Canal Park Development Association. The park includes a restaurant, skating rink, interactive fountains and an innovative stormwater management system.

2013 – 2018

2014

Fairway Park with 406 units, opens in northeast DC, a transformation of a formerly troubled apartment community

2014

The Skyland Workforce Center opens. The Center is a partnership of the Skyland Town Center development team and five nonprofits that provide employment services to the community. In its first two years of operations, the Center helped 200 people find employment.

2014

Skyland Town Center Groundbreaking WC Smith and partners break ground on the Skyland Town Center, an 18acre mixeduse project in southeast DC

2015

Sheridan Station is complete. WC Smith finishes work on all three phases of Sheridan Station, a 327unit mixedincome community, made up of both rental and homeownership units.

2015

Muriel Bowser elected Mayor of DC

2016

Park Chelsea at The Collective opens

2016

WCS Mortgage closes its first $100 million loan

2017

Agora at The Collective opens, the second phase of the amenityrich trilogy of buildings

2017

WC Smith adopts Yardi, completing a major overhaul of the property management software.

2017

The third building at THEARC opens.The new building provides an additional 93,000 SF and allows THEARC to expand to 15 partners.

2017

Archer Park opens 190 affordable apartments on Mississippi Ave SE

2018

WC Smith celebrates 50 years of building and managing communities in Washington DC

2019 and Beyond

2019

Avec on H Street will open, with 419 units and 44,000 SF of retail.

2019

City View will open, with 58 affordable units near Sheridan Station and Washington View

2020

The first phase of the Skyland Town Center is scheduled to open. At the intersection of Good Hope Rd, Alabama Ave and Naylor Rd SE, the first phase of the Skyland Town Center will have 263 apartments and 84,000 SF of retail.

2020

The last building at the Collective, the Garrettwill open, bringing the total number of units to 1138 and the total amenity space to 105000 SF

2020

The Petworth Station renovation will be complete, preserving 78 affordable units near the Petworth Metro Station

2021

Terrace Manor will open, with 128 new affordable units near the Villages of Parklands

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