There’s More Than One Way to Reskin a Building
Old government buildings are turning into posh hotels, '80s-era office buildings into Millennial-friendly innovation hubs and empty warehouses into chic apartments. Developers are breathing new life into some of DC's oldest and most iconic buildings, and we got the latest on these projects this morning at our DC's Repositioning Boom.
Washington REIT director Bob Elliott, a panelist at our event in the Reagan building, says his company has repositioned a number of buildings in its 60-property portfolio, but the crown jewel is 7900 Westpark Dr, repositioned and rebranded as Silver Line Center. The 570k SF complex, last renovated in 1985, needed a facelift to fit in with the new Tysons. Washington REIT poured $35M into the project, turning it from drab concrete to shimmering glass and LED lights, while overhauling the signature atrium on the inside.
Boundary Cos founder John Wilkinson, also a panelist, specializes in complete overhauls, tackling challenging properties in DC’s urban core. Boundary and a CBRE Group affiliate are repositioning the Foundry Building in Georgetown, adding a rooftop deck and ground-floor retail as well as opening up the floor plan on the inside. John is also working with JBG on turning an abandoned warehouse in Northeast into apartments.
EagleBank CEO and chairman Ron Paul, another panelist, is seeing “a tremendous amount of minor repositioning,” from upgrading bathrooms or lobbies to redoing an HVAC system. Not everything has to be a triple-A property, he adds. No matter what the future holds, everyone agreed that repositioning the District's past is a huge part of the region’s present. Stay tuned for more event coverage in tomorrow's issue.