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DC Council Approves NoMa Business Improvement District

Washington, D.C., March 21, 2007… The District of Columbia Council has approved a new Business Improvement District (BID) for the NoMa (North of Massachusetts Avenue) area of Washington, D.C. The new BID will support the emergence of NoMa as one of the District’s most exciting mixed-use neighborhoods. Through a special assessment collected from NoMa’s commercial property owners, the BID will help make NoMa safe, clean, and attractive for businesses, residents, and visitors.Washington’s newest BID is bounded generally by Massachusetts Avenue on the south, North Capitol Street on the west, and Q and R Streets on the north; it also extends eastward just beyond the CSX/Metrorail tracks. Centrally located within the BID is the New York Avenue Metro Station, situated near the new headquarters of the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF). The BID’s office is at One NoMa Station, 131 M Street, N.E. 

Organized in 2006 as the NoMa Improvement Association, the new BID currently has a seven-member Board chaired by Bruce Baschuk of J Street Development. Remarked Baschuk: “We are thrilled to officially become a Business Improvement District, especially given the growing public and private sector interest in NoMa. We expect to see tremendous new development in the coming years — 1.5 million square feet of office space, 1,500 apartments, and two hotels will break ground this year alone.” “With the scarcity of well-located office space in the District, this former industrial area is being transformed into a mixed-use destination that will combine well-priced and accessible office space with housing, retail, and cultural attractions,” said Charles “Sandy” Wilkes of The Wilkes Company, Vice Chairman of the NoMa BID. He added: “People are just now realizing the area’s enormous potential with its stunning Capitol views, mature trees, notable historic and cutting-edge contemporary architecture, and easy access to everything the District has to offer.”

“NoMA is developing rapidly as a business and media center, and will soon offer residential and retail options,” commented Board Treasurer Douglas M. Firstenberg of StonebridgeCarras. “The heart of NoMA is just a few blocks north of the Capitol and already is home to media giants CNN and XM Satellite Radio. In addition, NoMA serves as a major multimodal transportation hub with the New York Avenue Metro Station, Amtrak and Metrorail service at Union Station, the Greyhound bus terminal, and major commuter routes.”

“XM Radio was the first major corporation to move to the ‘new’ NoMa back in 2000, when we relocated to a century-old renovated printing warehouse,” recalled Chance Patterson of XM Satellite Radio. “It’s great to see development of NoMa taking off, and we look forward to welcoming many new neighbors.”

The NoMa BID will work closely with the District government and the U.S. General Services Administration to coordinate service delivery and facilitate the location of business and government offices within NoMa. “We have a number of challenges ahead, including the development and improvement of infrastructure, providing economic incentives for businesses to locate here, and building an amenity base that includes exciting stores, restaurants, and entertainment locations,” concluded Baschuk. “This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to create an all-new, 24-7 neighborhood in the Nation’s capital.”

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