More On NPR Building Sale

Earlier on FishbowlDC: “NPR HQ Purchased

NPR officially announced the sale of its Massachusetts Ave. property to Boston Properties, Inc (first reported by the Washington Business Journal).

Full release after the jump…


    NPR, one of the premier worldwide media organizations, announced today it has sold its current Washington, D.C. headquarters at 635 Massachusetts Avenue, NW to Boston Properties, Inc. (NYSE: BXP) and contracted with the same firm to redevelop the site of NPR’s future headquarters at 1111 North Capitol Street, NE.

    In March, NPR announced the acquisition of 1111 North Capitol Street, NE, located in the District of Columbia’s new business improvement district of NoMa (North of Massachusetts Avenue), for its future global headquarters. Since then, NPR has undertaken an extensive process to identify and select a developer for the property. After narrowing down the prospective firms, NPR selected Boston Properties, a firm that offered a competitive bid for both the redevelopment of 1111 North Capitol Street and for the purchase of 635 Massachusetts Avenue.

    “After an extremely competitive selection process, Boston Properties emerged as our developer of choice not only because of their real estate development expertise in the D.C. market, but also because of their ability to purchase our current building, thus ensuring a streamlined relocation process,” said Dennis Haarsager, NPR’s interim CEO. “We are confident that Boston Properties will deliver a top-notch, state-of-the-art public broadcasting facility that will best serve our 600 Washington-based staff, our 860 public radio station partners, and their 26 million listeners.”

    “NPR is a nationally and internationally acclaimed organization and we are honored and privileged to have been selected to lead the development of their new headquarters,” said Ken Simmons, Boston Properties’ Senior Vice President. “We are also very pleased to have acquired NPR’s existing Massachusetts Avenue building which is located on one of the best remaining sites in the city.”

    “We are pleased to welcome Boston Properties to the growing list of leading national and regional development firms that are active in NoMa,” said Elizabeth Price, President of the NoMa Business Improvement District (BID). “We are also excited to see NPR’s relocation to NoMa come one step closer to reality.”

    Art Greenberg, Vernon Knarr and Julie Rayfield of global commercial real estate advisory firm Studley represented NPR in the transaction.

    NPR will remain at its current location and lease it back from Boston Properties until the new headquarters is ready for occupancy, anticipated in late 2012. All of NPR’s Washington-based journalism, multimedia, technical distribution, business and executive activities will be housed in the new facility. NPR has been located in Washington, D.C. since it was founded in 1970, and has occupied the current property in Mount Vernon neighborhood since 1994.

    Next steps in NPR’s new headquarters project include the selection of an architect for 1111 North Capitol Street, NE. The architect will be charged with designing an environmentally sensitive building with workspace that fosters a creative, collaborative and interactive atmosphere, and one that embraces new technology, enabling NPR to grow and merge its broadcast and digital activities. The new facility will include a 60,000 square foot space for NPR News’ extensive, award-winning broadcast and multimedia operations and a public space for live shows and events.