WDCEP Releases DC Development Report: 2020/2021 Edition

Washington DC Economic Partnership Releases DC Development Report

Proving the Latest Trends & Analysis from 20 Years of Growth in the District

March 11, 2021 (Washington, DC) – The Washington DC Economic Partnership (WDCEP) has released the latest edition of their signature publication, DC Development Report: 2020/2021 Edition, providing the latest trends and analysis of more than 2,000 major projects, representing more than 355 million SF of development in the District of Columbia. This year’s report is complemented by a suite of digital resources including interactive neighborhood maps showcasing development in Buzzard Point and Saint Elizabeths East.

The DC Development Report represents the only consistent synopsis of DC’s ever-changing landscape, providing both unique insights into the latest development trends as well as important analysis on future investment opportunities,” said Chad Shuskey, SVP of Programs of WDCEP.

Highlights from this year’s report include:

  • During the past 20 years, the District has experienced more than 216.5 million SF of new development resulting in 65.5 million SF of new and modernized office buildings, 91,500 housing units, 21,200 hotel rooms, and nearly 10 million SF of retail space.
  • From 2010–2019 the District averaged 11.6 M SF of development starts. In 2020 groundbreakings totaled 6.5 M SF, the lowest figure since the Great Recession in 2009 (4.3 M SF).
  • Development continues to head east and areas such as St. Elizabeths (8 M SF), Anacostia and Barry Farm (4.5 M SF), and Minnesota & Benning (2.6 M SF) are anticipated to experience significant growth over the next decade.
  • In 2020, during the COVID-19 pandemic (March 2020–December 2020), 4.6 M SF of groundbreakings occurred in the District. 80% of these development starts were residential projects totaling more than 4,000 units.
  • The District had a stabilized vacancy rate of 10.3% for Class A apartments as of the end 2020, more than double the 4.9% rate a year prior.
  • The District has several major healthcare developments underway and in the pipeline: Children’s National Research & Innovation CampusMedstar Georgetown University Hospital Pavilion, two major healthcare facilities are planned at the St. Elizabeths East Campus (a new hospital & Whitman Walker Health), and Howard University unveiled plans for a new hospital in the past year.

WDCEP tracks development projects throughout the year, performed an annual “development census” in the winter, and received contributions from more than 80 developers, architects, contractors, and economic development organizations that resulted in updates to more than 300 projects.

This year, WDCEP proudly partnered with Delta Associates to provide insight into DC’s economy and various real estate sectors including office, retail, hospitality, and residential.

 About the DC Development Report

The report can be downloaded from wdcep.com and the interactive DC Real Estate Search tool allows users to query WDCEP’s development project database, find pipeline projects in Opportunity Zones and analyze detailed demographics. The DC Real Estate Search tool is available at search.wdcep.com.

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