Housing Complex

Microsoft Commits to Opening D.C. Innovation Center

Close-up-building1Two years after D.C. officials started wooing Microsoft to open a major office in the District, the company is now committed to establishing an innovation center in D.C.

Last year, Microsoft was one of three companies to make the short list for an anchor tenant at the St. Elizabeths site between Anacostia and Congress Heights. Since then, Microsoft officials have spoken about their interest in coming to D.C., but have stopped short of committing to doing so.

But today, at the annual meeting of the Washington, DC Economic Partnership, Microsoft community affairs director Donna Woodall gave a short speech in which she implied the company was coming to D.C. Afterward, I asked her if it was a done deal. The details, she said, were still being worked out, but she added, "We are going to bring an innovation center to this city."

A Microsoft presence would give a major boost to Mayor Vince Gray's stated goal of making D.C. the biggest tech center on the East Coast, and would fulfill the aim of bringing a tech focus to St. Elizabeths. Microsoft's innovation centers around the world bring startups and researchers together with government and industry partners. This would be the first innovation center in America.

Photo from the St. Elizabeths East development website

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