Thursday, February 25, 2010

A Blow to Shaw: Radio One Backs Out of Office Deal

Shaw residents pinning their hopes on neighborhood revitalization getting kicked up a notch with the Broadcast Center One may be waiting a while longer. It seems that Radio One--the tenant that was supposed to anchor the 100,000+ sf office project--is backing out of the deal to move from Lanham, MD into new digs at the corner of 7th and S streets NW.

Radio One hasn't yet provided a reason as to why they are backing out of the deal, but with a plummeting price in recent years it's reasonable to believe the decision had to do with profitability--or lack thereof. They might want to start thinking of an answer however, seeing as how the District ponied up nearly $30 million in incentives to bring them here.

The development team--Four Points LLC, Ellis Development Group and the Jarvis Co.--are insisting that the development will still move forward, but it's difficult to envision a project that has already been delayed moving forward without its most significant tenant. (Talks have been held to bring in the United Negro College Fund, but those are still preliminary.)

Broadcast Center One is a mixed-use development that, in addition to the aforementioned office space, will host over 25,000 sf of retail, 180 apartments and a massive underground parking garage. It is one of several projects in the Shaw/Mt. Vernon Square area to face significant delays. Roadside Development's Citymarket at O project remains on hold while financing concerns are resolved, while Marriott, JBG Cos. and the District government fight it out over the rights to develop the long-sought after Convention Center Hotel. Meanwhile, projects like the Warrenton Condominiums and Hartland Commons continue to exist more as pie-in-the-sky dreams than projects that have an actual chance at completion.

When/whether these projects ever get started is anyone's guess, but everyone can agree that these kinds of delays are frustrating.

No comments: