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October 23, 2012
WASHINGTON, DC, October 23, 2012 — Covington & Burling is pleased to announce that it has signed a lease with the developers of CityCenterDC -- Hines, Archstone and the TFI US Real Estate Fund -- to become the anchor office tenant of the landmark, mixed-use development in downtown Washington.
CityCenterDC, a unique, pedestrian-friendly, 10-acre mixed-use development, located in the heart of downtown Washington, is one of the largest downtown developments currently underway in the United States. Covington will occupy approximately 420,000 square feet when it moves into its new space in the summer of 2014. The initial lease will run for 20 years during which time the firm will have the option to expand. Covington was advised on the transaction by Thomas Fulcher and Arthur Greenberg of Studley and Debra Lehman-Smith and James McLeish with Lehman Smith McLeish (LSM).
“We are excited to participate in the redevelopment of this historic section in the nation’s capital, which will have enormous positive impact on the city,” said Timothy Hester, chair of the firm’s management committee. “CityCenterDC’s proximity to all of Washington’s major institutions makes it an ideal location to serve our international and domestic clients. I want to extend a special thanks to Studley and LSM for their advice on this project.”
“We are extremely excited to welcome a firm with the stature and prominence of Covington & Burling as the anchor tenant for CityCenterDC’s office component,” said William B. Alsup, III, senior managing director of Hines. “It’s symbolic that a firm with nearly a hundred-year-history in Washington has chosen to relocate to the city’s most cutting-edge project.” He added: “Covington’s relocation to CityCenterDC embodies one of the most important design themes of the project’s master plan – integrating the new with the old, ‘reweaving’ the fabric of the surrounding neighborhood with the state-of-the-art amenities and components of CityCenterDC.”
TFI, which is partnering with Hines and Archstone on the project, is the investment banking arm of Barwa Bank, one of Qatar’s leading financial institutions. In addition to managing the U.S. Real Estate Fund, TFI is co-investing alongside the fund’s anchor investor Qatari Diar, the real estate investment arm of the Qatar Investment Authority. TFI has built a strong track record in major investment banking deals and global real estate funds over the last three years and is emerging as a prominent transactions, advisory services, and fund management company. The fund is advised by Tanween, a leading Qatari company specializing in destination development and project management.
Mohammed Al Saad, vice chair and managing director of Barwa Bank and Board member of TFI, said, “As Qatar’s first major real estate investment in the U.S., I am very pleased to note that construction is progressing ahead of schedule and that the project has secured this prestigious anchor tenant. Our partners, Hines and Archstone, and the investment management senior teams at Barwa Bank, TFI and Tanween believe we are delivering a truly transformational, mixed-use, landmark development in one of the world’s great capital cities.”