CityCenterDC Signs Lease with Covington & Burling LLP
Global Corporate, Litigation and Regulatory Law Firm Leases More Than 400,000 SF
(WASHINGTON, D.C.) – Hines, Archstone and the TFI US Real Estate Fund, developers of CityCenterDC, announced today the signing of a lease with Covington & Burling LLP as the anchor office tenant of the landmark, mixed-use development in downtown Washington, D.C. CityCenterDC is one of the largest downtown developments currently underway in the United States. With the execution of the Covington lease, the office buildings, One and Two CityCenter, are now more than 80 percent pre-leased.
Covington, founded nearly a century ago in Washington, D.C., is recognized as a leading international law firm, with more than 800 lawyers in offices in Beijing, Brussels, London, New York, San Diego, San Francisco, Silicon Valley and Washington. Additional offices in Shanghai and Seoul are awaiting regulatory approvals, which are expected later this year. The law firm will occupy approximately 420,000 square feet when it moves into its new space in the summer of 2014. The lease will run 20 years during which time Covington will have options to expand. Covington was advised on the transaction by Thomas Fulcher and Arthur Greenberg with Studley and Debra Lehman-Smith and James McLeish with Lehman Smith McLeish (LSM).
“We are excited to participate in the redevelopment of this historic section in the nation’s capital, which will have an enormous positive impact on the city,” said Timothy Hester, chair of the firm’s management committee. “CityCenterDC’s proximity to all of Washington’s major institutions makes it an ideal location to serve our international and domestic clients. I want to extend a special thanks to Studley and LSM for their sage advice on this project.”
“We are extremely excited to welcome a firm with the stature and prominence of Covington & Burling as the anchor tenant for CityCenterDC’s office component,” said William B. Alsup, III, senior managing director of Hines. “It’s symbolic that a firm with nearly a hundred-year-history in Washington has chosen to relocate to the city’s most cutting-edge project,” said Alsup. Alsup added, “Covington’s relocation to CityCenterDC embodies one of the most important design themes of the project’s master plan – integrating the new with the old, ‘reweaving’ the fabric of the surrounding neighborhood with the state-of-the-art amenities and components of CityCenterDC.”
The First Investor (TFI) is the investment banking arm of Barwa Bank, one of Qatar’s leading financial institutions. In addition to managing the U.S. Real Estate Fund, TFI is co-investing alongside the fund’s anchor investor Qatari Diar, the real estate investment arm of the Qatar Investment Authority. TFI has built a strong track record in major investment banking deals and global real estate funds over the last three years and is emerging as a prominent transactions, advisory services and fund management company. The fund is advised by Tanween, a leading Qatari company specializing in destination development and project management.
Mohammed Al Saad, Vice Chairman and Managing Director of Barwa Bank and Board member of TFI, said, “As Qatar’s first major real estate investment in the U.S., I am very pleased to note that construction is progressing ahead of schedule and that the project has secured this prestigious anchor tenant. Our partners, Hines and Archstone, and the investment management senior teams at Barwa Bank, TFI and Tanween believe we are delivering a truly transformational, mixed-use, landmark development in one of the world’s great capital cities.”
CityCenterDC (www.citycenterdc.com) is a unique, pedestrian-friendly, 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. Foster + Partners of London and Washington D.C.’s Shalom Baranes Architects served as master-plan architects. Phases I and II of the project will contain more than 295,000-square-feet of retail space situated at the base of seven buildings that encompass 520,000 square feet of office space, 458 rental apartment units, 216 condominium units a 370-room luxury hotel, a public park, a central plaza and pedestrian-oriented streets and alleyways.
Construction of Phase I of the project commenced in March 2011. As of October 2012, the structures associated with the two office buildings, two apartment buildings and two condominium buildings are nearing the “topping out” milestone, which is anticipated in early November. It is further anticipated that these buildings will be able to accept initial occupants during the fourth quarter 2013. A joint venture between Clark Construction Group, Smoot Construction of Washington, D.C. and McKissack and McKissack is the general contractor.
Construction of Phase II of the project is expected to commence in the first half of 2014. It will consist of an approximately 370-room luxury hotel and 73,000 square feet of additional retail.
Setting a new standard for urban living, the CityCenterDC apartments, Archstone CityCenter, will respond to the District’s growing demand for well-appointed apartment homes in convenient locations. The apartment interiors will showcase thoughtful features and functional layouts, including substantial living rooms and open kitchens. Outside of their apartments, residents will have access to a comprehensive array of services and amenities designed to enhance the daily living experience. The 458 luxury apartments will be available for rent beginning in the fall 2013.
The CityCenterDC condominiums, the Residences at CityCenter (www.ResidencesatCityCenterDC.com), designed by internationally respected Foster + Partners, will be stunning architectural additions to downtown Washington. The well-appointed, sophisticated condominium residences will feature custom European kitchens, built-in wardrobes and floor-to-ceiling glass that will allow abundant natural light into the home. All of the homes will offer access to a balcony or Juliet balcony. Eleven of the homes will offer the exclusive use of private terraces – a feature not often seen in the District. A Sales Gallery recently opened and sales of the units are underway. The Gallery contains a fully detailed model unit and renderings of the private resort-style amenities available to residents and a scale model of the entire CityCenterDC project.
The CityCenterDC retail component will consist of over 60 stores, restaurants and cafés. CityCenterDC’s retail will complement and enliven the existing downtown retail by providing one-of-a-kind shopping and dining destinations for the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area. The project will feature a unique mix of local, national and international brands that will lease quality retail space with extensive street frontage and dynamic storefronts and signage. Initial leases are being finalized, and it is expected that a critical mass of tenants will be in place spring 2013, with a Grand Opening scheduled for spring 2014.