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In The Works: Top 3 Developments Coming To Alexandria

Victory Center

The 5001 Eisenhower Ave. office building in Alexandria, Va.

Developer: Stonebridge 

Stonebridge closed on its acquisition of 5001 Eisenhower Ave., known previously as Victory Center, a 607K SF office building that has stood vacant since 2003. The acquisition came less than two weeks after the Alexandria City Council voted to rezone one of the site’s 7-acre parking lots for a mix of uses, and to offer Stonebridge a tax abatement package.

The developer plans to build up to 150 for-sale residential units, a mix of townhouses and condos, on the site’s eastern parking lot, then to add around 20K SF of retail space, Stonebridge principal Doug Firstenberg said. Having a core of residents to frequent the businesses will help strengthen the retail offerings at Victory Center and the surrounding area.

Even though the building fits the government’s leasing requirements, the efforts to find a government agency to occupy the building have been stymied. Then-landlord Principal Real Estate Investors was awarded a full-building lease with the Transportation Security Administration in 2015, but a legal challenge from Boston Properties got the lease voided later that year. The TSA is moving to a Boston Properties building in Springfield.

Even with those failures, though, Stonebridge still is hoping for a government lessee, and now more than rent is on the line. If the developer can successfully lease 200K SF of the building, the city of Alexandria will put in a tax abatement package worth an estimated $31.5M over the next 15 years.

North Royal Street Residential Project

A rendering of the proposed project from Trammell Crow Residential, on the site of the Royal Street Bus Garage

Developer: Trammell Crow Residential

Trammell Crow Residential has officially closed on its purchase of the 48,500 SF bus garage at 600 North Royal St. in Alexandria’s Old Town. The 2-acre site, currently owned by the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, is set to become a 286-unit multifamily building offering studios, one-bedroom and two-bedroom apartments, as well as two floors of underground parking. Construction is set to begin in late 2019 with the demolition of the current garage.

The purchase of the building cost Trammell Crow $26M, the Washington Business Journal reports, a far cry from the $1.5M that was paid for the land in 1973, when it was bought by a forerunner to today’s WMATA.

The garage has been unused since 2014 when the buses housed in Alexandria moved to a larger facility in Lorton, 15 miles southwest of Alexandria. WMATA began offering the property as a ground lease in 2015, but retracted those offers before putting the entire property up for sale in 2017. WMATA awarded Trammell Crow the rights to the garage in June 2018.

Hoffman Town Center — Block 11

A rendering of the proposed Block 11 at Hoffman Town Center.

Developers: Perseus TDC, LCS Development

Perseus TDC, in partnership with LCS Development, has released more plans for the 1-acre Block 11 of the Hoffman Town Center, a shopping and entertainment district whose developers' residential aspirations have slowly been coming to fruition, the Washington Business Journal reported.

At the site, Perseus is planning two towers. The first, a 351-foot apartment tower, would offer 508 residential units over 22 floors, as well as nearly 7K SF of ground-floor retail space. Next door, LCS — a senior living developer — is planning a 270-foot senior tower with a mixture of memory care, assisted living and independent living units.

Plans for the project, which are currently under review with the Carlyle East Design Review Board, also call for a public park as well as a private park dedicated to the senior living tower. Block 11 could be the first step in a much larger project for Perseus, which purchased 13.3 acres near Hoffman Town Center in 2016. 

Perseus officials emphasized the site’s proximity to public transit. Directly across Mill Road from the two towers is the Metro's Eisenhower Avenue stop on the Yellow Line, only four stops from Amazon’s eventual home in Crystal City