Corporate Office Properties Trust (COPT) has executed leases with a subsidiary of an investment-grade Fortune 500 company to deliver two shell buildings on land COPT recently purchased in Ashburn. The company did not disclose the tenant’s identity.
The real estate investment trust, based out of Columbia, Md., said in a press release that the two buildings will total 315,000 square feet. COPT’s total investment in what will be called Ashburn Crossing is projected to be $42 million, which includes remaining land on which the company can build an additional building.
According to a statement Tuesday from the Loudoun County Department of Economic Development, COPT bought 34 acres for $14 million from St. John Properties, Inc. near the intersection of Gloucester Parkway and Loudoun County Parkway, in an area of Loudoun known as “data center alley.“
“This area of Loudoun County is close to the backbone of the Internet, as well as to Dominion Virginia Power’s Beaumeade substation. In addition, there’s infrastructure for connection to Loudoun Water’s reclaimed water system, which offers data centers operational savings,“ said Buddy Rizer, the county’s assistant director for economic development.
In 2012, nearly three million square feet of data center space was added to Loudoun’s existing 4.5 million square feet of data centers. Up to 70 percent of the world’s Internet traffic passes through Loudoun’s data centers each day.
COPT said that construction on the first 200,000-square-foot building is expected to begin early in 2013, in anticipation of a fourth quarter lease start date. The company anticipates breaking ground on the second 115,000-square-foot building no later than mid-2014, with a lease start date about nine months later.
The leases were signed at the end of 2012. “We are pleased to be able to meet this customer’s need in Northern Virginia, one of COPT’s strategic markets,” Roger A. Waesche, Jr., president and CEO of COPT, said in a statement.
COPT is an office REIT that focuses on specialized tenant requirements in the U.S. government and defense information technology sectors and data centers serving these sectors. As of Sept. 30, the company’s portfolio included 206 office properties totaling 18.6 million rentable square feet.
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