(Washington, DC) – Today, Mayor Muriel Bowser and the Department of General Services (DGS) issued a Request for Space (RFS), seeking offers for office space to support DGS as part of the Mayor’s effort to prioritize DC Government leasing in neighborhoods east of the Anacostia River. The responses to the RFS must meet the criteria outlined in a Mayor’s Order, issued last week, that identifies the DC Government as a catalyst for economic growth in communities currently experiencing underinvestment and needing retail, including grocery stores.
“We know that DC Government will bring the daytime activity that retailers seek when making long-term decisions about new locations for their stores,” said Mayor Bowser. “We are committed to moving this effort forward and attracting needed amenities such as fresh food options, entertainment, recreation, and job opportunities to communities East of the River.”
The Mayor’s Order directs the Office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development (DMPED) and DGS to first identify potential relocation properties in Wards 7 and 8 when considering office space for DC Government agencies. In the order, Mayor Bowser calls for DMPED and DGS to develop scoring standards for the District’s Requests for Space that consider suitability of the space, cost, and benefit to the local community. The order also requires the agencies to produce a report on April 15 and October 15 of each year that outlines forthcoming RFS received from District agencies within a five-year window.
“Mayor Bowser has challenged us to use every tool possible to incentivize grocery stores and neighborhood serving retail in Wards 7 and 8. Residents deserve access to healthy food options close to home, and with our partners in the Administration and on the DC Council, we will use our leasing capacity to deliver for our residents,” said Interim Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development John Falcicchio.
The RFS issued today explains that, in accordance with the Mayor’s Order, preference will be given to properties that include accompanying community amenities, especially full service grocers and affordable housing. Currently the District has 460,000 square feet of office space in its east of the river portfolio.
“I am excited that DGS is the first District agency to submit a Request for Space in support of the Mayor’s Order 2019-078 which serves to encourage a thriving economy in the city’s underinvested sectors,” said Keith A. Anderson, Director of the Department of General Services. “It is our hope that DGS will negotiate its new lease within six months to one year and have delivery of the agency’s new office space in two to three years thereafter.”