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JUST IN: WeWork in Crystal City to Close

(Updated at 3:30 p.m.) Coworking giant WeWork is planning to shut down its Crystal City location next month, according to an email sent to members this morning.

“I am reaching out to regretfully inform you that the WeWork Crystal City location will be closing,” said the email, which was shared with ARLnow by a member. “This location has stood strong for 5 years, and leaves a historic mark on the legacy of WeWork.”

“We know the last year has been full of surprises and challenges for every person all over the world,” the email continues. “In order to address some of these challenges, it was imperative that we carefully evaluate and right-size our portfolio.”

Amid the pandemic, WeWork has been preparing to take “drastic action” as it pursues the goal of profitability at the end of this year. The company currently has 759 open and coming locations in 119 cities worldwide, according to its website. That’s down from 828 locations at one point last year.

Fueled by massive private investment, WeWork grew at a torrid pace during the second half of the last decade, but as growth stalled its CEO and cofounder was ousted from the company and its planned IPO was scrapped.

The JBG Smith-owned building that houses WeWork in Crystal City — 2221 S. Clark Street — also contains one of the only two WeLive locations ever opened. An experiment in communal living, WeLive was reported to be on the chopping block last year.

It was not immediately clear whether WeWork plans to close the residential space along with the coworking space — the former occupies most floors of the aging office building, while WeWork is housed in the top two floors. JBG, meanwhile, has been on a redevelopment spree in Crystal City following the arrival of Amazon’s HQ2.

After the initial publication of this article, a WeWork spokeswoman confirmed to ARLnow that WeWork would be closing, but said nothing final has decided about the future of WeLive. WeWork locations in Rosslyn and Ballston are remaining open, she said.

“In streamlining our portfolio towards profitable growth, we have decided to move on from 2221 Clark St. in Arlington,” the spokeswoman said. “With several excellent locations in the immediate area, including 901 N. Glebe and 1201 Wilson, we look forward to providing our members with first-class, flexible space solutions.”

The move-out date for the Crystal City WeWork is Feb. 26, she added.

WeWork is also closing three locations in D.C., according to the Washington Business Journal.

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