WASHINGTON, DC-With an inventory of only 6.6 million sf, and 72 buildings according to GVA Advantis statistics, the District’s Uptown submarket has seen little development in recent years. That will change, though, with the construction of 1616 Rhode Island Ave., a 15,394 sf PUD-approved development site located off Scott Circle on 16th Street.

The Center for Strategic and International Studies has purchased the land for an undisclosed amount from Gould Property Co. Bill Collins, Paul Collins Drew Flood and Jud Ryan of Cassidy & Pinkard Colliers represented the seller.

1616 Rhode Island Ave. will eventually be a 129,680-sf class A office building constructed out of transparent glass and aluminum with stone accents. It will be situated one block between Connecticut and Massachusetts avenues, close to the Dupont Circle neighborhood.

This part of town typically sees little development activity because it is so small, Tonya L. Ginter, CCIM and director of Research & Marketing for GVA Advantis, tells GlobeSt.com. One notable exception was the delivery of a 44,000-sf building located at 1250 U St. More recently, she says, there has been retail-led activity, such as the Tivoli Theater redevelopment project and the adjacent Giant supermarket in Columbia Heights, which delivered in May 2005. And 7059 Blair Rd., a 20,000-sf office building, was renovated in September 2006.

Asking office rates for Uptown range between $34 per sf to $35 per sf. A new class A building would likely call for $42 per sf, she says. “However I have seen rates as high as $70 per sf in other parts of the District because the price of construction and investment sales are driving rates up. So anything beyond [$42 per sf] wouldn’t surprise me.”

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