Boston Properties Wins 500,000-SF GSA Lease in Virginia

In the latest government lease to bolster the Northern Virginia office market, the General Services Administration has taken more than 500,000 square feet for the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) at a Patriots Park in Reston, Va. Under a 20-year deal with Boston Properties, the park’s owner, DIA will occupy about 520,000 square feet at Patriots Park, which is located about 20 miles west of Washington, D.C.  

“This will be a consolidation of DIA groups from various locations throughout Northern Virginia,” Leroy W. Battle, transaction manager with commercial real estate services firm CB Richard Ellis Inc., told CPE. CB Richard Ellis, along with GSA contracting officers, represented the government in the transaction, while Cassidy Turley stood in for Boston Properties. Patriots Park is undergoing a comprehensive redevelopment that will adhere to the U.S. Department of Defense’s anti-terrorism/force protections guidelines. DIA will make its home at 12300 and 12310 Sunrise Valley Drive. Built in 1987 and 1988, the five-story buildings account for approximately 255,000 square feet and 265,000 square feet, respectively.

The GSA wanted to maintain DIA’s presence in Northern Virginia and more than a few owners were hoping to secure the lease. “Our preliminary survey noted that there are a number of properties that could fit the government’s requirements,” Battle said. “The properties had to meet a bevy of security requirements, and had to be priced in a manner that the government found economically compelling. So, the search was guided by the principle of lowest price technically acceptable, i.e. meeting or exceeding the minimum security standards.”

Northern Virginia did not escape the ravages of the economic downturn, but numerous GSA office deals have helped buoy leasing activity in the area. “The government clearly has been one of the main drivers in the Northern Virginia office market,” Battle noted. “According to our recent data projections, at the close of the third quarter, Northern Virginia will have experienced its first positive net absorption in several quarters. A fair amount of that is due to large government leases. Looking forward, our expectation is that things will continue to improve.”