Chris Roth: It is interesting
that the House uses a template
now to approve leases.

WASHINGTON, DC-The House of Representatives Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure has given the green light for several government leases, many of which are in the DC area. These include:

  • a replacement lease of up to 292,173 square feet for the Justice Department’s Office of Justice Programs, at a cost of $14.3 million for 15 years;
  • a lease consolidation for the Federal Bureau of Investigation of up to 191,156 feet, at a cost of $6 million for 20 years;
  • a replacement lease of up to 87,000 square feet for the Department of Defense’s Defense Security Cooperation Agency, valued at $3.3 million for 20 years;
  • a 124,000-square-foot lease for the Consumer Product Safety Commission, at a proposed cost of $4.3 million for 15 years;
  • a 327,000-foot lease for Department of Treasury’s Financial Management Service, valued at $8.5 million for five years.

In reality these leases and others approved by the House come as little surprise to the commercial real estate community, Jones Lang LaSalle broker Chris Roth tells “GSA had been working on these leases for a while, and they’ve already been tasked to brokers.” Still, the certainty that the House approval affords is a relief. There is little danger that the leases could be derailed by this point, Roth says.

What is also interesting is that the House committee has begun using a template as it approves these space needs, Roth also notes. “They all, for example, establish a better utilization rate and warn the agency that if it doesn’t consolidate it will still have to use that rate.”

It also mandates across the board that GSA will do the leasing from now on—there will be no delegation of authority. “There isn’t a lot of variance written into these approvals, which was not always the case in the past,” Roth says.