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ARLINGTON, VA-The General Services Administration has renewed a 235,983-sf lease with Bethesda-based Lerner Enterprises at a class B office building here. GSA secured the five-year term lease on behalf of the Department of Defense, and was represented by Matt Miller, Julie Rayfield and Todd Valentine of Studley. Lerner Corp., the leasing and management affiliate of Lerner Enterprises, represented its parent in the transaction. The lease has an additional one-year renewal option.

Built in 1964, the building is located 400 Army Navy Dr., which is close to the Pentagon–making it an ideal use for the Department of Defense. The Defense Department has been the sole occupant of the building since 1986, when it was renovated. “We are excited about our ongoing long-term relationship with GSA at 400 Army Navy Dr., and continue to look forward to our continued partnership at many of our other signature properties in the Washington, DC metropolitan area,” Mark Lerner, a principal of Lerner Enterprises, says in a prepared statement.

There have been a number of government leases inked in the greater DC area over the past two quarters. The US Patent and Trademark Office, for instance, recently signed a 10-year lease to occupy 168,468 sf at 2800 S. Randolph St., which is also in Arlington. Also, the Social Security Administration renewed 334,103-sf at 511 Leesburg Pike, which is owned by Vornado.

The PTO and Defense Department leases illustrate an emerging trend in Northern Virginia this year, Tonya Ginter, director of research and marketing for GVA Advantis tells GlobeSt.com. In Q2, she reports, “Arlington was the only county out of the five counties in Northern Virginia to see decreasing vacancy rates. That is because more tenants are moving out of the District to Arlington in search of lower rates.” In general, the average rate for a class B building in Pentagon City–where 400 Army Navy Dr. is located–is $34.23 per sf, according to GVA Advantis. For the District, the average class B rental rate is $42.31. In the East End, they are on average $43.44.

Studley declined to comment for the article, citing client confidentiality. Lerner did not return calls in time for deadline.

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