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February 6, 2008

Next Bisnow Breakfast & Schmooze:  We're delighted to announce that our friends from Clark Construction will be sponsoring our next event, February 29, featuring Jon Peterson, who's heading the The Peterson Companies' stunning creation of National Harbor.  (Note: This event will be at the Tower Club in Tysons, not the usual City Club.) Big thanks to both Jon and Clark Construction! Sign up


Isn't that what Mardi Gras actually means in French?  And did you know Clarendon converts itself for the evening into a Carnival?  Yep, parades, floats, and (how shall we put it?) wild costumes.  Sounds like an excuse for a mid-week real estate party!


For the record, the DC Associated General Contractors' Mardi Gras party was perfectly civil and law-abiding, but for purposes of this picture, they were kind enough to step outside their venue at the Navy League Building onto Wilson Blvd for this backdrop of unrelated raucous float-goers. AGC CEO Cherie Pleasant joins "risk management guys" Geoff Haver and Tom Shelton of RCM&D.


Safely inside, but at least decked out in Mardi Gras beads, some next generation AGCers, called the Young Constructors' Forum:  Grunley's Lisa Corrigan, Davis' Jon Dougherty, Andy Cerere, and Erik Seubert, Bechtel National's Dorsa Hassas, Davis' Mike Gavalla, Turner's Joel Causey, Aerotek's Joe Moore, Davis' Noah Ashbaugh and Patrick Cotter, and Clark's Todd Bagwell.


Yesterday morning was another story:  The 350 at a ULI breakfast at the Grand Hyatt didn't seem to realize what day it was. Talking about "recalibrating expectations" in the marketplace were panelists Laura Cole of RCLCO, ULI Chair Brian Cullen of Keane Enterprises, Harriet Tregoning of the DC Office of Planning, BOT president Jim Dinegar, ULI Chair David Forrester of Forrester Construction, Jones Lang's Joe Delogu, and Boston Properties' Ray Ritchey.  Joe and Harriet coined new real estate terms.  Joe referred to "veneer developers" who are too thinly collateralized to survive in a new era of restrictive capital; and Harriet called DC a "Clark Kent City"—having a reputation for boring government but underneath being super-dynamic.


In the non-French quarter last night at Washington Golf and Country Club—no one we saw was tossing beads or doing shots of tequila—the Washington Real Estate Investment Trust threw its annual broker appreciation dinner.  Above, CBRE's Bruce Strasburg, WRIT's Tom Regnell, and Grubb & Ellis' Warren Amason. Tom told us WRIT's portfolio (13.5m SF of office, apartments, industrial, retail, and medical) is valued at over $2.5B. Last year alone, it did over $320M in acquisitions. Warren says he's busy working on WRIT's Dulles Station West, 180k SF of mixed use on Rt. 28 near what they hope will soon be a Metro station.    


WRIT's Dave DiNardo, center, tells us its medical office portfolio in this area is over 1M SF—thanks to guys like Nick Zuppas and Dave Gittleson of Gittleson Zuppas. Nick said, "Wherever there's doctors, that's where we are."  He's heading to Argentina in March for a red stag hunt (like a big elk), while Dave's officiating at the Virginia State AAA High School Swim and Dive Championships in which his daughter's competing.


We also chatted over shrimp cocktails with Metropolitan Asset Management's Steve Plott, WRIT's Mike Paukstitus, and Holliday Fenoglio's Jim Meisel. Mike told us WRIT has been around almost 50 years—they were founded in 1960. Seems like a long time ago, but Mardi Gras started in America around 1690. 

Reznick Group
Brookfield Properties
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