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January 23, 2008


Don’t miss LandAmerica’s upcoming Going Global event.  More info here.  Feb. 6, 7:30am, Capital Hilton.   Bisnow will be there!


2008 looks to be a good year for Trammell Crow:  Not only is the company turning 60, but it’s also boasting a massive $9B worth of development nationwide—with $2B of that (7M SF) in DC, MD, and VA. Last week, we paid a visit to Trammell’s Georgetown digs to learn about what eastern US development chief Chris Roth calls “the largest and most diverse development in the history of the firm.”


Trammell’s DC power quartet: Steve Shelesky, Chris Roth, and Tom Finan (sans principal Greg Crum, who was off on a cruise). They stand in front of the firm’s namesake and company founder. Yes, there really is someone named Trammell Crow: a former Navy man whose first building was a spec grain warehouse outside Dallas in 1948.


So where is that 7M SF?  Well, 2.5M is in DC, like Patriots Plaza in SW and 90K NE in NoMa—both high-security and LEED-certified, hoping for GSA tenants and private firms. Now that the first phase of the Gensler-designed Patriots Plaza is 100% leased, the second and third phases of the 1M SF complex are underway, with excavation just completed.  Meanwhile, 90K (designed by SmithGroup) breaks ground in April for Phase I (412k SF), with subsequent phases contingent on market developments.



What is that—a building aquarium?  No, it’s the model for West End’s “Columbia Residences” (formerly the Columbia Hospital for Women), which delivered mid-2007. The $137M project, designed by Shalom Baranes, is already sold out.  Trammell’s busy in the ‘burbs too:  In Alexandria, the Madison (344 rentals at 800 N. Henry St.) got a city council-approved SUP on Jan 12 with ground set to break Q1 ’09.  Out in Fairfax, Trammell just completed Old Town Village. The 95k SF office condos (voted best by NoVa NAIOP) are 50% sold and the 52k SF retail is 70% leased. Finally, in Columbia, MD, the 573k SF LEED-certified Franklin Center is under construction and set to deliver in Q4.  


Apparently you have to be an athlete to become a Trammellian.  Above, Chris dons another kind of gray suit scuba diving with sons Chris Jr., left, and James in Belize last summer.  As for colleague Steve, a former defensive end for Virginia Tech, he tells us his whole family snowboards and every winter you’ll find him, his wife, and their 13-year-old son and 16-year-old daughter at their vacation home in Steamboat Springs.  Meanwhile, Tom plays what he calls “proper football” (aka soccer); he played in college at BU and later for the Sheffield Wednesday club in England.  He's so serious, last weekend he went to Vegas not to compete at the gaming tables, but on the soccer field.      


Custom M&Ms with the signature “M” aren’t the only new addition to Monument Realty’s K Street headquarters.  This month, five-man Urban Realty Advisors "merged" with them, introducing a new third-party, fee-based development service for a company that's traditionally built on its own real estate.  URA brings with it ongoing projects like hotels for Thayer Capital.  Monument tells us it toyed with adding this capability for a long time, and that for URA it's a chance to tap into a larger platform and deal flow.  Our camera caught the new team yesterday:  URA principals Bill Herman (front left) and Eric May (back right) with Monument co-founders Michael Darby and Jeff Neal.  Note to construction king Jim Davis:  Do you know you're owed a finder's fee?  The two sides met on one of your Park City ski trips.  By the way, we thought these Monument guys were supposed to be Young Turks—but look how corporate they've become!  Maybe they should acquire a dry cleaning business and buy starch in bulk.

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