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Constitution Square Breaks Ground, Largest Mixed-Use Project in NOMA

Friday, April 4, 2008
Press Advisory for Immediate Release

(Washington, DC) Mayor Adrian M. Fenty on Monday joined StonebridgeCarras and District leaders to break ground for the first phase of Constitution Square, a 1.6 million square foot mixed-use development that will include hundreds of new apartments, almost a million square feet of office space, a new hotel and a Harris Teeter grocery store.

“This is exactly the kind of project we want to see in NoMA,” Mayor Fenty said. “It brings energy and vitality to the neighborhood 18-hours a day by mixing work space with housing and retail. The District is proud to have made a strategic, targeted investment to help make this project a reality.”

Last month, the General Services Administration announced the Department of Justice would lease more than 520,000 square feet of office space – more than half of the project’s total office space. The project will also include 440 apartments, a 204-room Hilton-flagged hotel and more than 80,000 square feet of retail space including a 50,000 square foot full-service Harris Teeter grocery store.

The District provided a $6 million tax abatement for the project to help finance parking associated with the grocery store.

The project is expected to achieve a gold-level certification from the US Green Building Council. It is a joint development between Bethesda-based StonebridgeCarras and Walton Street Capital of Chicago and it is expected to deliver in 2010.

The NoMA neighborhood is an emerging mixed-use neighborhood north of the US Capitol and Union Station. There are plans for more than 20 million square feet of office, residential, hotel, and retail space to be built in the neighborhood during the next 10 years.

The District recently unveiled the Center City Action Agenda, an economic development strategy that calls for using incentives such as tax abatements to promote private sector investment in emerging neighborhoods like NoMA, the Ballpark district, our waterfronts and East of the River in Anacostia.

A month ago, Mayor Fenty announced NPR would relocate its headquarters to NoMA. While suburban jurisdictions aggressively courted the international media organization with generous incentive packages, the District has agreed to a 20-year tax abatement to help level the playing field. NPR is now one of three major media organizations – also including CNN and XM Satellite Radio – that have a major presence in the NoMA.