Accomplishments – FY16

Washington DC Economic Partnership Fiscal Year 2016 Accomplishments

In Fiscal Year 2016 (October 2015 to September 2016), the Washington DC Economic Partnership focused on five main areas to contribute to the economic growth of Washington, DC and improve the awareness of Washington, DC for business growth.

Real Estate + Retail

Washington, DC’s real estate and retail sectors continued to thrive in FY16. From the activations Washington, DC hosted regionally and nationally to providing site location assistance – Washington, DC continues to see national brand growth in the city as well as local businesses.

ICSC Mid-Atlantic

In March 2016, WDCEP represented Washington, DC at ICSC Mid-Atlantic and met with 21 key retailers and retail brokers, promoting various opportunities in DC.


Since 2001, the Washington DC Economic Partnership has represented the District of Columbia at International Council of Shopping Centers’ (ICSC) Real Estate Convention (RECon) in Las Vegas, the largest retail industry convention in the world.

In May 2015, WDCEP conducted nearly 70 meetings with retailers and developers from across the nation demonstrating DC’s commitment to attracting high quality national and international retail establishments. Nearly 450 people visited the Washington, DC booth over the three-day activation, and more than 650 people celebrated Washington, DC at the WeDC Reception held at the SLS Hotel.

Space Finding Tours

WDCEP’s DC Space Finding Tours are aimed at entrepreneurs, retailers, restaurateurs and brokers looking to open or expand their business in DC’s neighborhoods.

In 2016, WDCEP hosted four Space Finding Tours covering the following areas/neighborhoods:

  • Anacostia
  • East Capitol Street
  • Nannie Helen Burroughs Ave
  • New York Avenue, NE/Ivy City
  • Fort Totten
  • Minnesota & Benning
  • Fort Lincoln
  • Brookland
  • Downtown DC
  • Georgia Avenue
  • Kennedy Street
  • Skyland
  • Southwest Waterfront
  • Union Market
  • Bladensburg Road
  • Takoma
  • Pennsylvania Ave, SE
  • Capital Riverfront
  • Buzzard Point

DC Development Report

In December of 2015, WDCEP released its 14th Edition of the DC Development Report in collaboration with CBRE.

Key findings from the report include the following highlights on the development, retail, and residential markets. All data is reported as of August 2015.

Development Market

Through August, there have been 6.4 million square feet of development starts in DC. With possibly an additional three to five million square feet of groundbreakings.

Retail Market

There is 1.9 million square-feet of retail space currently under construction. This is comparable to the total square feet of Tysons Corner Center

Residential Market

It is anticipated that DC will deliver more than 6,000 residential units in 2016 (83% will be rental).

Office Market

The limited availability of large blocks of quality space in the urban core has prompted law firms to consider new, high-end developments in non-traditional locations.

Most of the demand growth in DC has been driven by non-traditional sectors, including non-profit organizations and the burgeoning tech industry and co-working sector.


By the end of 2017, DC will have added 2,749 net new hotel rooms, based on projects under construction. These hotels will range from upper midscale to upscale and luxury. Since 2001, the average hotel occupancy rate for DC has fluctuated between 69% and 76% and has remained consistently between 74% and 76% since 2008.


Since 2001, more than 17 million square feet of education (primary/secondary, college/university) and medical space has been built or modernized in DC, with another 1.4 million square feet currently under construction. Over the past 15 years (2001 – 2015) DC has averaged one million square feet of deliveries per year, a total that has already been surpassed.

To see the current DC Development report, please visit our resources page.

Site Location Assistance

In FY16, WDCEP assisted more than 425 retailers and other businesses, a 39% increase from 2015. The following WDCEP assisted businesses have opened (or made commitments) in DC during FY 2016:

  • 7-Eleven
  • Alamo Draft House
  • Buffalo Wild Wings
  • The Chickery
  • Chipotle
  • Dicks Sporting Goods
  • Drybar
  • Dunkin Donuts
  • Equinox
  • Glen’s Garden Market
  • Good Hope Family Dental
  • Half-smoke
  • J. Crew
  • Jimmy John’s
  • Landmark Theatres
  • Lowe’s Home Improvement
  • Michaels
  • Nordstrom Rack
  • Petco
  • PetSmart
  • Planet Fitness
  • Republic Restoratives Distillery
  • Rite Aid
  • Salsa With Sylvia
  • Sephora
  • Silver Diner
  • Starbucks
  • Streets Market & Café
  • TJ Maxx
  • Unleashed by PETCO
  • Walgreens
  • Walmart
  • Women’s Collective
  • YogaWorks

Tech + Innovation

The growth of the technology and innovation sector in Washington, DC continues to be an important initiative of WDCEP.

Accelerate DC

AccelerateDC is an initiative of the Washington, DC Economic Partnership that offers free and confidential mentoring for technology-based businesses in the DC area. In its full second year, AccelerateDC grew to include 113 mentors and 61 venture companies.

AccelerateDC uses a team-based approach to mentoring where entrepreneurs are paired with a team of 2-5 experienced volunteer mentors who offer a wealth of knowledge, entrepreneurial business experience, and extensive networks to young entrepreneurs.


Washington, DC’s presence at SXSW in March 2016 was led by WDCEP to support DC’s effort to expand it’s technology sector, provide a platform to promote its innovative startup companies, and foster new partnerships among the DC and national business community. The goals of SXSW include generating investor interest in DC’s start up community, supporting innovated industries and entrepreneurship, and talent attraction.

During the activation, WDCEP launched its “WeDC” campaign and activated an entire restaurant to represent the Washington, DC community with the following results:

  • 61.5 million social media impressions
  • More than 9,000 people visited the house
  • 200+ business leads were generated
  • More than 9,000 contacts were generated
  • More than 60 articles were written about the SXSW DC initiatives and/or Washington, DC’s business community as a result of DC’s SXSW efforts
  • More than 30 DC companies were featured in the We DC House

Small Business + Entrepreneurship

DC Doing Business Guide

WDCEP released an updated version of the DC Doing Business Guide, a step-by-step guide for entrepreneurs who want to start or expand a business in DC.

This guide covers information essential to relocating, starting, and expanding a business in the District of Columbia (Washington, DC). Whether you are an existing business looking to relocate to DC, an entrepreneur looking for some guidance on starting a business in DC, or a DC-based company looking to understand local business resources, you will find the guide to be an indispensable tool.

Entrepreneur Road Map

In FY 2016, WDCEP hosted ten Entrepreneur Road Map seminars, which covers topics from initial business start-up considerations to business financing. In FY16, 563 potential new or current small businesses attended Entrepreneur Road Map.

DC Neighborhood Profiles

WDCEP released the 2016 edition of the DC Neighborhood Profiles, a comprehensive tool for entrepreneurs as a way to discover opportunities to start and expand their concepts in Washington, DC. The report highlights neighborhood characteristics, grocery stores, cultural, or art highlights and provides detailed data and market intelligence on 54 distinct commercial corridors located within Washington, DC neighborhoods in all four quadrants of the city. In March 2016, WDCEP released the 2016 edition of the DC Neighborhood Profiles.

WDCEP received a Gold Excellence in Economic Development Award for its 2016 “Washington, DC Neighborhood Profiles: 2016 Edition” project in the category of General Purpose Print Brochure for communities with populations of greater than 500,000 from the International Economic Development Council (IEDC).

Marketing Washington, DC

2015 Annual Meeting + Development Showcase

In October 2015, WDCEP hosted its Annual Meeting and ECON Showcase . More than 600 attended to celebrate DC’s economic resurgence. Keynote speakers included Donna Harris of 1776, Tim Spangler of REI, and Jim Abdo of Abdo Development

Marketing Campaign

In December 2015, WDCEP launched its digital marketing ad campaign with Social Driver to promote Washington, DC for business growth.

Public Relations

Between October 2015 and September 2016, WDCEP was featured in 134 articles.

Social Media

Between October 2014 and September 2015, WDCEP gained 1,289 new followers on Twitter at their @WDCEP handle.