WASHINGTON, DC—A report by the DowntownDC Business ImprovementDistrict details just how strong the downtown district'seconomy was in 2013, but also pointed out some prevailing trendsthat could spell trouble for the district in the years ahead.

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The district's annual report warns that cutbacks in federalemployment, the declining amount of square feet needed peremployee, and regional competition will all contribute to areduction in office space demand by 7 million square feet to 14million square feet in the coming years. Such a reduction couldspike the current 14.4% private market office vacancy rate to ashigh as 25%, according to the Washington Business Journal.

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“It's strong with the exception of a lot of uncertainty in thecommercial office market,” says BID Executive DirectorRichard Bradley.

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Some record achievements recorded in 2013 included: employmentreaching 745,000 wage and salary jobs; hotels posting recordoperating performance and room revenue totals; and the averagesales price of Class A D.C. office buildings reaching a high watermark of $712 per square foot. The average sales price for allclasses of buildings was $533 per square foot, another record forthe district. See story in the Washington Business Journal.

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John Jordan

John Jordan is a veteran journalist with 36 years of print and digital media experience.