WDCEP Releases DC Development Report: 2017/2018 Edition

The Washington DC Economic Partnership Releases 2017-2018 Development Report

December 12, 2017 (Washington, DC) – The Washington, DC Economic Partnership (WDCEP) today released at their Annual Meeting the latest edition of the DC Development Report. The 2017-2018 DC Development Report is a summary of the major development and construction projects in the District of Columbia.

WDCEP tracks major development/construction projects throughout the year and performs an annual “development census” in the month of August. This research and outreach receives contributions from more than 100 developers, architects, contractors, and economic development organizations and results in updates to more than 400 projects. For the fourth year in a row, WDCEP proudly partnered with CBRE for the creation of the report. To view the report, click here.

Highlights from this year’s report include:

  • Assuming development timelines stay on schedule, conservative estimates for total groundbreakings in 2017 are 10.4 million sq. ft. While total groundbreakings for 2017 are expected to be below the 10-year average, the average project size of 179,000 sq. ft. is the largest since WDCEP started tracking development projects in 2001.
  • DC is experiencing record residential construction. As of August 2017, there were 15,860 residential units under construction. This tops the previous record of 14,847 units under construction (a 6% increase) at this time last year. Although with the deliveries of The Wharf (870 units) and The Modern at Fort Totten (520) post August, future residential units under construction is not expected to maintain historic levels, but be closer to historical norms of 10,000 units. (Note: includes affordable/non-market rate units).
  • DC hotels continued to exceed historical occupancy records in 2016, the fourth consecutive year that the average hotel in DC attained a record level, finishing the year at 78.4%. Furthermore, average occupancy in DC over the last four quarters (Q3 2016 to Q2 2017) was 78.4%, compared to the entire DC metro area at 72.2% and the U.S. at 65.6%.
  • Technology firms have accounted for 374,000 sq. ft. of leasing activity over the past twelve months, surpassing the preceding year’s total of 180,000 sq. ft.

“Since WDCEP has been keeping records over 17 years ago, the District has seen an unprecedented residential growth with a significant portfolio of new projects across residential, retail and office being developed or soon to come on line,” said Keith Sellars, President & CEO of WDCEP. “It’s amazing to see these record numbers of development growth throughout the District of Columbia, proving that the city is an attractive place for people to live, work, play and build a business.”

“For the sixth year in a row, CBRE’s proprietary research, combined with WDCEP’s tracker, has created a comprehensive overview of the 2017 real estate market in the Washington, DC area, “ said Brad Flickinger, Senior Managing Director at CBRE.  “The District’s diversified office tenant base, vibrant real estate and population growth all underpin the increase in development across asset classes.”


About Washington, DC Economic Partnership (WDCEP)
The Washington, DC Economic Partnership (WDCEP) is a 501(c)(3) organization aimed to promote economic development and business opportunities for Washington, DC and enhance the city’s economy through jobs creation, increased tax revenues, retaining existing businesses, and attracting new businesses. WDCEP facilitates economic development through business attraction, and business retention programs and activities including site location assistance, educational seminars and workshops, and networking and relationship building events. WDCEP is a key resource for Washington, DC economic development information and publishes several reports throughout the year including the DC Development Report, DC Doing Business Guide, and Neighborhood Profiles. For additional information, please visit www.wdcep.com.