Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Mayor Bowser, Events DC Unveil New Businesses at Walter E. Washington Convention Center

From our friends at Events DC...

DC-Based Business Leaders Come Together to Highlight District’s Thriving Tourism, Hospitality, and Development Sectors

Yesterday, Mayor Muriel Bowser, At-Large Councilmember Vincent Orange, and Ward 2 Council member Jack Evans joined Events DC - the convention and sports authority for the District - to announce six new retail and restaurant tenants that will soon occupy spaces that have been vacant for years at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. These businesses will bring highly anticipated economic activity and jobs to Washington, DC, and more community services to the Shaw Corridor.

“The realized potential of the convention center’s retail is yet another sign of DC’s economic vibrancy,” said Mayor Bowser. “I’m excited to see District-based businesses bring new services to residents and tourists in the Shaw neighborhood. My Administration will continue to work with our locally based businesses and the labor community to attract good-paying jobs and place more residents on a pathway to the middle class.”

By filling 100% of the available space at the Convention Center’s street-facing retail establishments, Events DC is demonstrating its dedication to the Shaw community, while contributing to the continued economic vitality of the District.  Collectively, the leases with these businesses represent a 10-year revenue of $7 million.

“On behalf of Events DC, we are thrilled to activate and fill the Walter E. Washington Convention Center’s retail spaces with a blend of tenants that will serve the Shaw neighborhood, the rest of Washington, DC and our visitors from across the country and globe. With this action, we will be linking the upper Shaw neighborhood to the north, with the exciting retail activity ongoing in the south - in short, connecting the neighborhood with this new retail experience,” says Max Brown, chairman of the board of Events DC. “Our restaurant, boutique fitness center, lounge and market offerings fill a gap in the retail landscape in Shaw - and we are beyond excited to be part of the growth of this vibrant neighborhood.”

Future tenants coming to the Walter E. Washington Convention Center, include the following establishments:

• Unconventional Diner, a locally owned and operated high-end diner concept and brainchild of two DC residents/business owners.  
• Union Kitchen Grocery, a locally inspired corner market that will be expanding the brand’s footprint to the Shaw neighborhood. Union Kitchen Grocery has an existing location in the Capitol Hill neighborhood. 
• Smoked & Stacked, a fast-casual sandwich shop that will showcase in-house brined and smoked pastrami.
• Morris, a craft cocktail bar, featuring notable DC-based chef and restauranteur, Spike Mendelsohn. This cocktail bar will be an expansion from their Sheppard concept which had its original location in Dupont Circle.
• Urban Athletic Club and Composition ID, a motivating and inspiring fitness marketplace and health diagnostic center. Urban Athletic Club has previously existing locations in both Georgetown and Glover Park. 
• A Barbershop Concept that will relocate their pre-existing location in the Shaw neighborhood. 

Mayor Bowser continues to promote investment and economic growth in the District, as demonstrated by the recent economic development mission to China. At yesterday’s announcement, Mayor Bowser  was joined by several key business leaders and organizations, including those that joined her on the China mission - to tout that tourism and economic development in the District continue to grow and are stronger than ever. The list of attendees included the Greater Washington Board of Trade, DC Chamber of Commerce, Destination DC, The Restaurant Association of Metropolitan Washington, The Hotel Association of Washington, DC, and Local 25, a DC labor union which represents over 6,500 hospitality workers in the Washington metropolitan area.

Streetsense, a creative real estate collective based in the DC area and Events DC’s leasing representative, played a key role developing strategy and executing the re-envisioned retail programming at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in an unprecedented amount of time - with vibrant local businesses for both residents and visitors to enjoy.

“Events DC is proud to partner with Mayor Bowser and DC-based hospitality leaders, to not only applaud District small businesses but to unveil future tenants coming to the exterior retail space at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center,” said Gregory A. O’Dell, president and chief executive officer of Events DC.  “As the official convention and sports authority, we believe that the power of these tenants will better connect the Convention Center with the community, helping to further activate the surrounding Shaw area with neighborhood-serving resources.”
Events DC also remains focused on long-term streetscaping plans that will not only enhance the fa├žade of the Convention Center, but will also enrich the tree boxes and sidewalks to create a greater sense of place for the Shaw community. Additional efforts include incorporating artistic elements, artwork and vertical plant installation. Respective tenant and streetscape construction is expected to take place in 2016. 

These six new tenants will join the Walter E. Washington Convention Center’s existing tenant, Sbarro, who first opened their doors, with much success, to the Shaw community in the spring.

Social Media:
Mayor Bowser Twitter: @MayorBowser
Mayor Bowser Facebook: facebook.com/MayorMurielBowser
Mayor Bowser Website: mayor.dc.gov

About Events DC:
Events DC, the official convention and sports authority for the District of Columbia, delivers premier event services and flexible venues across the nation’s capital. Leveraging the power of a world-class destination and creating amazing attendee experiences, Events DC generates economic and community benefits through the attraction and promotion of business, athletic, entertainment and cultural activities. Events DC oversees the Walter E. Washington Convention Center, an anchor of the District’s hospitality and tourism economy that generates over $400 million annually in total economic impact, and the historic Carnegie Library at Mt. Vernon Square. Events DC manages the Stadium-Armory campus, which includes Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium and surrounding Festival Grounds, the non-military functions of the DC Armory and Maloof Skate Park at RFK Stadium. Events DC also built and now serves as landlord for Nationals Park, the first LEED-certified major professional sports stadium in the United States. For more information, please visit www.eventsdc.com.