Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Build It And They Will Come...Hopefully

There was a commercial broker reception for the completion of 7021 Columbia Gateway Drive this afternoon. 7021 Columbia Gateway is a 104,000 square foot five story office building in the Columbia Gateway Corporate Community. This is a speculative office project developed by Orix Real Estate Equities in Chicago.

The leasing efforts for this building began in earnest the day the ground was broken in August of 2006. While it is not unusual for a building of this size to not have any leases signed at the time it is completed, it is far from comforting for the developer. Of particular concern is the fact that two more speculative office projects are now underway within sight of this building.

6811 Benjamin Franklin Drive is a 56,000 square foot two story building being developed by Columbia based Abrams Development Group. It is scheduled for completion by the end of the year. Just behind 6811 Benjamin Franklin is 6821 Benjamin Franklin which is also called Franklin Center. Franklin Center is a 200,000 square foot seven story office building being developed by The Trammel Crow Company out of Washington, DC. That works out to 360,000 square feet of new space with no tenants, so far. Of the three buildings, only Franklin Center is going for LEED Silver certification.

It is safe to assume that all three buildings are hoping to capitalize on the demand for space associated with BRAC at Fort Meade. It is too early to tell whether that demand will spread to Columbia Gateway, although there are several DOD contractors already located there.

As far as 7021 Columbia Gateway is concerned, the clock is certainly ticking.