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New offices, hotel in SE?

Washington Gas hopes to develop 19-acre site near Navy Yard

(Published July 12, 1999)

By OSCAR ABEYTA

Staff Writer

The first potential commercial development of the much-touted Southeast waterfront is in the works with Washington Gas trying to bring offices and a hotel to a 19-acre parcel of land next to the Navy Yard.

Washington Gas spokesman Tim Sargeant said the utility company is currently in negotiations with Dallas-based developer Lincoln Property Co., which he said "hopefully will be completed very soon."

Market surveys conducted by the gas company concluded retail office space and a hotel would be most suitable for the area, Sargeant said. Washington Gas would retain ownership of the land and lease the site to the developer to build on, he said.

Public comments on the company’s proposal to remedy environmental conditions at the site are currently being solicited. Any environmental problems with the site would have to be remedied before the company could lease the site for development. The public comment period ends July 16.

Lincoln Property is one of the five largest commercial and residential firms in the country with properties in over 200 cities, including the District. The company’s web site says it has developed 140 million square feet of commercial property and the company’s residential division is comprised of 140,000 multi-family residential properties.

The 18.8-acre site proposed for development is bounded by 12th and M streets SE and runs to the Anacostia River. The National Park Service, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the D.C. government own small portions of the site.

Washington Gas has owned the site since 1888 and operated a natural gas manufacturing plant there until 1983. The plant was demolished in 1985 and the underground storage tanks were removed in 1997.

Copyright 1999, The Common Denominator