(WASHINGTON, DC) – Mayor Vincent C. Gray and Members of the D.C. Council joined representatives of Hines|Archstone today to begin construction on the landmark CityCenter DC development. The $700 million project is believed to be the largest downtown development currently underway in any U.S. city. In addition, developers announced that 100 percent equity financing has been secured for the $700 million project.
The anchor investor is Qatari Diar Real Estate Investment Company (QatariDiar), the real estate investment arm of the Qatari Investment Authority. Barwa Bank’s investment banking subsidiary The First Investor (TFI) financed the project. TFI will co-invest in and manage the dedicated TFI U.S. Real Estate Fund.
“This effort has been almost a decade in the making, and we look forward to the progress that will be made on the site of the old convention center as this last missing piece of our downtown is redeveloped,” Mayor Gray said. “I am excited about the more than 190 District Certified Business Entities that are involved in the planning, design and construction of this project, and the thousands of construction and permanent jobs that it will create. This is a huge development for the residents of and visitors to our city.”
Formerly the site of the District’s convention center, CityCenter DC is a 10-acre, mixed-use development, located in the heart of downtown Washington on a 4.5-block parcel bounded by New York Avenue, 9th, H and 11th Streets NW. The first phase of the project is a pedestrian-friendly neighborhood with more than 185,000 square feet of retail situated at the base of six buildings that encompass 458 rental apartment units and 216 condominium units; and 520,000 square feet of office space. The project also includes 1,555 below-grade parking spaces; a restored street grid, and nearly an acre of public open spaces. A second phase of the project is planned to include a 350-room upscale hotel, along with 110,000 additional square feet of retail.
In addition to the significant tax revenue generated by a project of this magnitude, CityCenter DC will provide benefits to District residents in the form of affordable housing, new public spaces, priority hiring for new jobs created by the development and a commitment to use District-based firms for at least 35 percent of all contracts in the design, construction and operating phases of the project. To date, more than 40 such firms, representing $19 million in contracts, have worked on the project. More than $150 million is expected to be added during construction, representing the inclusion of over 125 additional District-based firms. Several District-based companies have been given the opportunity to invest and participate in the project’s ownership.
A joint venture between Clark Construction Group and Smoot Construction has been engaged as general contractor. Construction commenced on March 23 and is expected to reach substantial completion by the fourth quarter of 2013.