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For Sale: D.C. Development Site Approved For 1.8M SF In An Opportunity Zone

One of the largest planned development sites in D.C., sitting directly across from a Metro station, is on the market.

A rendering of Parcel 12 in the Parkside development, with a pedestrian bridge connecting it to the Metro station

Cushman & Wakefield is seeking buyers for Parcel 12 of the 3.1M SF Parkside development on behalf of CityInterests, a marketing brochure posted to its website shows. Cushman & Wakefield Executive Vice Chairman Paul Collins told Bisnow his team was retained to sell the site last month and has already spoken with multiple interested parties.

Parcel 12 represents the portion of Parkside planned for the highest density and located closest to public transit. It is planned to include four buildings totaling 1.8M SF along Route 295, with a walking bridge planned to connect the site to the Minnesota Avenue Metro station. 

The Northeast D.C. property sits about a half-mile north of where Route 295 meets Benning Road, just east of the Anacostia River. CityInterests representatives didn't respond to multiple requests for comment as of press time.

The brochure highlights the site's location in an opportunity zone, allowing potential investors to reap the tax benefits of the federal program. CityInterests in November told the Washington Business Journal it plans to use opportunity zone financing for separate parcels of the project, including a 115K SF office building, a 72-unit multifamily building and a 191-unit multifamily project located to the west of Parcel 12. 

A rendering of CityInterest's planned 3.1M SF Parkside development

CityInterests has already developed several buildings on the site, beginning with the areas farther away from the Metro station. The completed housing on the site includes over 300 townhouses, a 98-unit senior living facility and a 186-unit affordable rental building. The developer broke ground in May on the 191-unit apartment building. 

The site also includes the Neval Thomas Elementary School, the Cesar Chavez Public Charter Schools, a 32K SF early childhood education facility and a 43K SF primary care health clinic. 

"They've been developing out Parkside over a period of time, back to front, and I think the parcels just west of these they've got a plan for now, and that just leaves Parcel 12 left," Collins said. "We're going to try to put it into good hands."

A Parkside site plan from 2017 detailing the envisioned use for each parcel

CityInterests acquired the 26-acre site in 2004 and received its first-stage planned unit development approval in 2007, detailing the overall density across the site. The development team later received second-stage approval for several of the individual parcels and has received multiple time extensions as Parcel 12 has yet to begin construction. 

CityInterests had envisioned a mix of uses for Parcel 12. A site plan the developer shared with Bisnow in 2017 shows the building on the southeast corner of the site, block 12-G, as an apartment project of between 400 and 600 units. The two center buildings, block 12-H, were envisioned as up to 750K SF of office space with ground floor retail. To the north of that, block 12-I was envisioned as educational use. 

The Parkside website still lists those uses for each Parcel 12 block, but the Cushman & Wakefield brochure marketing the site does not detail the individual blocks, instead saying the total site could support 1.8M SF of office, multifamily, hotel and retail. The buyer would have flexibility to select a mix of uses within the approved zoning, Collins said, or it could apply to modify the plans. 

The office space is designed for a federal government tenant, according to the brochure, and Collins said that a public sector user would make the most sense for the site. The Northeast D.C. neighborhood does not have an established private sector office market, but it is common for government users to lead the way in occupying D.C.'s emerging areas. 

"Any developers that have experience leasing space to the federal government or the D.C. government are probably good prospects for the site," Collins said. "It would be great for a government agency for the office portion, and they'll figure out whether to do residential or hotel for the balance."