D.C.’s NoMa Submarket Snags Another Massive Lease

Washington, D.C., seems to be at no loss for mega-leases these past few weeks. Nipping on the heels of National Public Radio’s decision to move its headquarters to NoMa yesterday, the U.S. Department of Justice has inked a 521,000-square-foot lease at the upcoming Two Constitution Square at 145 N St. N.E., also in the emerging NoMa submarket. The 15 year deal is in a submarket that averages $48 per square foot, according to Newmark Knight Frank. Neil Levy, Julie Rayfield, Mett Miller, Rick Barnett and Todd Valentine of Studley Inc. represented the tenant, while Darian LeBlanc, Zeke Dodson and Mark Sullivan of Cassidy & Pinkard Colliers represented the landlord, Stonebridge Carras. The tenant is scheduled to move 2,000 employees into the building in the first half of 2010, when the 1.6-million-square-foot first phase of Stonebridge and Walton Street Capital’s Constitution Square project (pictured) will deliver. It is scheduled to break ground in April and deliver in 2010, and will comprise not only Two Constitution Square, but One Constitution Square, with 340,000 square feet of office space, a residential building with 440 apartment units and 80,000 square feet of retail space, including a planned 50,000-square-foot high-end grocery store. HOK Architects is designing both buildings for Gold LEED certification. Clark Construction Group is the general contractor.The final phases of Constitution Square will include an additional 400,000-square-foot office building and another residential building with approximately 500 units. The seven-acre complex will cover an entire city block.”This deal and yesterday’s relocation of NPR is going to establish NoMa into what people eventually expected it to be, a place for users looking for large space,” Doug Firstenberg, a Stonebridge principal, told CPN, noting that the two transactions will be an impetus for all large users to consider the submarket. LeBlanc, senior vice president & director of government services for Cassidy & Pinkard Colliers, explained that it was a long, complex transaction, and that the Department of Justice initially sought offers last spring. It was believed that the department was still evaluating and considering the proposals up through the end of 2007. “There were a lot of great sites to choose from, but the combination of design, value, sustainability and convenience ultimately delivered for Stonebridge Carras,” LeBlanc said, noting that plenty of opportunities exist for large users within the district, especially in the NoMa and Southeast submarkets. This top deal for Studley follows a slew of other recent large tenant representations for the firm, including NPR’s. The same team, minus Levy, represented the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office in its 168,470-square-foot lease at 2800 S. Randolph St. in Arlington, Va. in late February, as well as the General Services Administration, U.S. Social Security Administration and the Office of Disability Adjudication and Review’s 334,100-square-foot consolidation at 5107 Leesburg Pike in Arlington, also signed last month.