Metro puts downtown headquarters site on the market, one of most sought-after locations in the District
Renderings by Perkins & Hill
Metro today announced that it is offering its downtown DC headquarters site - home to the Jackson Graham Building - for development under a long-term ground lease. The offering is extremely rare in the DC real estate market, both in terms of location and size and represents a prime opportunity to re-develop the site for future high-density office, residential, hotel or mixed-use development. The 1.1-acre (48,401 square foot) site spans an entire city block and is located in the heart of the city's Gallery Place retail and entertainment district, across the street from the Capital One Arena and the National Building Museum, and within a one-block walk to Gallery Place and Judiciary Square stations, providing convenient access to the Red, Green, and Yellow lines.
Because Metro would retain ownership of the property under a long-term lease, any development would have the potential to generate sustained revenue for Metro to support bus and rail operations, help keep fares affordable, and contribute to the transit agency's long-term financial stability.
As announced in October, Metro purchased an existing building near L'Enfant Plaza (300 7th Street SW) for its new DC headquarters. As part of a broader consolidation effort, other employees and job functions will be relocated to new regional headquarters sites in Maryland and Virginia that will be announced in the coming weeks. Overall, the consolidation is estimated to save taxpayers $130 million over the next 20 years by consolidating Metro's current 10 office buildings to seven.
The Jackson Graham Building has served as Metro's Headquarters since 1974 and has never undergone a major renovation. Not only is the building inefficient, it does not meet current fire/life safety standards or Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements. The cost to rehabilitate the existing building to meet these standards was evaluated and deemed prohibitive, prompting the acquisition of 300 7th Street SW in what the Washington Business Journal recently named one of the "best real estate deals of 2018."
In the offering, Metro commits to vacate the Jackson Graham Building by December 2022.
"Maximizing the value of our downtown property is in the best interest of Metro, the District, our employees and our riders," said Metro General Manager Paul J. Wiedefeld. "While the Jackson Graham Building has been our home for more than 40 years, the revenue that will be generated by the redevelopment of this property is an investment in Metro's future."
Metro has retained JLL Mid-Atlantic Capital Markets (JLL), part of a global commercial real estate company (NYSE: JLL), to broker the sale of a ground leasehold interest of the current headquarters site at 600 Fifth Street NW. The property, described in DC land records as Square 487, is being offered for a 99-year ground lease to highly qualified investors. Parties interested in this opportunity can visit wmata.com/realestate under the "Current Offerings and Solicitations" section, or may go directly to JLL's offering at Square487.com.