Morning Notes

by ARLnow.com January 20, 2011 at 8:26 am 1,779 13 Comments

Clarendon Office Building Sells for D.C. Prices — The 200,000 square foot office building at 3101 Wilson Boulevard, located across the street from the Clarendon Metro station, has sold for a whopping $112.6 million.”Pricing was on par with building trades in Downtown DC,” reports GlobeSt.com. The building is home to a TD Bank and Georgetown’s continuing studies programs. [GlobeSt.com]

County Issues Bonds for Projects — Arlington County has sold $11.9 million in bonds at a relatively low 4.18 percent interest rate. The bonds will fund the last phase of Fire Station 3 in Cherrydale, a new park in Buckingham Village and initial construction of the Arlington Mill Community Center. Although a direct comparison is difficult, in July Arlington sold $73 million in bonds at an interest rate of 2.70 percent. [Arlington County]

Midsummer’s Night Dream Starts in Crystal City Next Week — It may be mid-winter, but Synetic Theater’s word-less production of A Midsummer’s Night Dream will start on Tuesday in Crystal City. [Shirlington Village Blog]

Flickr pool photo by Kevin H

  • DT

    A new park in Buckingham Village huh? Why don’t they require the new construction people to build the appropriate number of parking spaces. Not being able to park in front of our own house two blocks away is ridiculous.

  • Burger

    — Although a direct comparison is difficult,–

    Actually, it isn’t hard to compare. 4.28 is higher than 2.7. This is due to several things. The Muni bond market is having serious issues with threats of default so investors are asking for additional money to offset the risk. Considering Arlington has over 1 billion in bonds currently sitting out there and one of the highest per capita debt levels in Virginia it isn’t surprising either for higher interest rates.

    I’ll not the UST has also gone up so that is another driver as well. However, the 10 yr UST was approximately 2.7ish in July 2010 and sits at 3.4 right now. However, Arlington’s bond went from 2.7 to almost 4.2.

    Psst, Arlington County Board, the bond vigilantes are on line 1.

    • Dan


    • Wayne Kubicki

      Burger – your observations are all spot-on, but there is actually a difficulty in comparing the average rates on these two bond sales.

      Some of the bonds sold in July of 2010 (the sale that averaged 2.7%) were “Build America Bonds”. This program was part of the Federal stimulus program (I think), where the Feds pick up 35% of the interest cost. I believe the quoted 2.7% in the County press release on the 7/10 sale was net of the interest the Feds are paying.

      At bottom, comparing the 4.18% average on the new sale with the 2.7% net average from the July ’10 sale is really not “apples/apples.”

      • Arlwhenever

        The Federal Government steps in to subsidze Arlington County debt. My, that is so progressive. It’s no wonder our country getting sucked into a financial black hole.

    • Suburban Not Urban

      I would think the other thing pressuring Arlington bond prices – is the noise being generated in DC about spending cuts.

    • Thes

      Isn’t the major difference between the 2.7% bond and the 4.28% bond that the former is guaranteed by tax revenue, and the latter is not guaranteed by anything except the County Board’s goodwill? It makes sense that bondholder taking a higher risk would get a better return.

  • Shane

    $112.6 million for that office building. Interesting. In lieu of this, I would think commercial property owners might want to think twice before whining about their assessments.

    Remember, property owners, if you push an appeal, you do so before the Board of Equalization in a public hearing. An enterprising reporter, blogger, or civic group might want to attend such meetings to shine a light on the silly nature of the appeals being presented.

    • Lou

      It sold for 25% over the new assessment.

    • Oh Man!

      I live close by in a SFH, so it validates the value of the area, despite my house assessment falling by $40K (no, I’m not an Arlington Board member or friend); but it also may mean that my kids daycare property in the area is now highly prized! let’s use that extra $5 million in property taxes and reserve some daycare areas in arlington for working parents.

      • Greg

        Daycare is in short supply in Arlington, but when the Board attempted to give incentives (bonus density) for including daycare space in new construction it was shot down by Zimmerman (over objections from Favola and Fisette), because the “rich” might use it. Really disappointing stuff. I’m not sure that the issue ever came back around.

        Arlington has high standards for daycare, which is great. But it needs to recognize that those standards make it expensive to run a daycare in the County and some form of support is needed. Or the County can just keep catering to Orange line renters and forget about families (libraries, parks, planetarium, etc.,), which seems more likely.

        • Thes

          How wealthy should a person be before their neighbors should stop subsidizing their daycare with tax money or zoning breaks? This is an honest question based on your assertion of the policy debate.

  • GeorgeOrwell

    hope the new owners of 3101 Wilson realize that they are next to a ghetto under construction that will destroy the world (after it finishes off Lyon Village).


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