City, Developer Won’t Meet Deadline to Submit D.C. United Deal
In September, the city and the developer Akridge signed a letter of intent that laid out the process for the intended land swap to clear the way for a D.C. United soccer stadium on Buzzard Point. Akridge owns a parcel of land that the city needs to assemble the site for the stadium; D.C. plans to trade the aging Frank D. Reeves Municipal Center at 14th and U streets NW for that site, plus cash. Before that happens, the sites must be independently appraised. The letter stipulated that the appraisers would submit their findings by Oct. 14, D.C. and Akridge would reach a definitive agreement by Nov. 1, and they'd submit their agreement to the D.C. Council by Nov. 15.
Today is Nov. 15. And the deal still hasn't been hammered out.
Tony Robinson, spokesman for City Administrator Allen Lew, who negotiated the preliminary deal on the city's behalf, says the appraisals are now in, but the agreement still hasn't been finalized and isn't ready to submit to the Council.
That doesn't mean the stadium plans won't move forward as intended. But it likely does mean a delay, which could complicate the ambitious timeline for the project. According to the term sheet signed by Mayor Vince Gray and D.C. United co-owner Jason Levien, the District has until Jan. 1, 2014, to assemble the land for the stadium site and get the necessary approvals from the Council. That's starting to look like it might be a longshot.
Rendering courtesy of the Office of the City Administrator