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Marriott, Finvarb to Build 53 Million Dollars Hotel on Former District-Owned Site

Wednesday, July 11, 2007
Press Advisory for Immediate Release

(Washington, DC) Finvarb Group, a Florida real estate developer, broke ground today on a 218-room Courtyard by Marriott on a former District-owned property next to the New York Avenue–Florida Avenue–Gallaudet University Metro Station in Washington’s newest neighborhood North of Massachusetts Avenue (NoMA).

“This project is a great example of how we can leverage a District asset for 21st century sustainable development in our city,” said Mayor Adrian M. Fenty. “The hotel practically sits on a Metro station, alongside two major transit corridors. It will have a green roof, direct access to a bicycle trail and 10,000 square feet of street-level retail.”

As a part of the development agreement negotiated by the District, 35 percent of the construction contracting must be done by businesses certified by the District’s Local, Small and Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (LSDBE) program and 51 percent of the new jobs must go to District residents. Additionally, the project financing includes a 20 percent equity stake from LSDBE investors.

Finvarb Group is a Hispanic-owned real estate company, and its development partners, Home Rule Development and Welburn Development, are both locally based African-American-owned companies. The hotel will be the District’s first Hispanic-owned Marriott property.

The hotel will also be the first in the District’s emerging NoMA neighborhood, which lies between Union Station, the Florida Avenue Market, Eckington, Bloomingdale and Northwest One. The NoMA area is expected to produce more than 20 million square feet of new development, $500 million in new tax revenue and 36,000 jobs during the next 10 years.

The Marriott project is part of the more than $1 billion worth of development that is expected to break ground in NoMA by the first quarter of next year. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives is expected to start moving into its nearby new headquarters this summer and the Federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission will move more than 700 employees to the area by 2008.