Mayor Vincent C. Gray

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February 07, 2011

Mayor and Community Center Celebrate Ceremonial Ground Breaking of Progression Place Project UNCF Moving National Headquarters to Washington 

Progression Place is forecast to bring more than 500 construction jobs, 300 permanent office and retail jobs to the neighborhood.

Media Contacts

(Washington, DC) Today Mayor Vincent C. Gray joined Broadcast Center Partners and The United Negro College Fund (“UNCF”) at a ceremonial groundbreaking of the Progression Place Project, located at 7th and S Street, NW, in Washington’s historic Shaw neighborhood. Progression Place is forecast to bring more than 500 construction jobs, 300 permanent office and retail jobs to the neighborhood and generate at least $25 million in new taxes during the next 20 years.

“The District’s $20 million investment in this project reflects our standing as a true public partner in this development. Progression Place will become part of the bridge that will link our world-class downtown to our magnificent and diverse neighborhoods,” said Mayor Gray.

In addition, UNCF announced today completion of the financing and purchase transaction to move its National Headquarters to Progression Place in Washington, DC. UNCF purchased a 50,000 square foot office from the development team of the 320,000 square foot Progression Place mixed-use project. UNCF financed its purchase through the Industrial Revenue Bond program and received an incentive from the District of Columbia to help it relocate from Virginia.

Mayor Gray hailed UNCF's move to the city as both an important contribution to the city's commitment to educating its children and a shot in the arm for the city's economy. "Our education reform agenda has made the District one of the country's leaders in school reform, but we need partners like UNCF to help students prepare for and make the critical transition to college attendance and college success," Gray said. "We also welcome the jobs that UNCF will bring to the city and the jobs that the new building will generate all around the Shaw neighborhood."

Progression Place will feature the UNCF College Knowledge Center, a 5,000 square foot resource center offering students standardized test preparations, college application assistance, financial aid assistance, a clearing house for internships and extra-curricular activities, resume writing skills, interview training and career fairs, and job placement assistance.

Progression Place is being developed and is owned jointly by Four Points, Ellis Enterprises, and The Jarvis Company. The District of Columbia and the Shaw/LeDroit Park community have worked closely with this development team to make Progression Place the leading redevelopment of the historic Shaw arts/cultural district. This high quality, mixed-use development at the Shaw /Howard Metrorail station will help link the Washington Convention Center area to Howard University along the 7th Street Corridor and anchor the eastern end of the dynamic U Street Corridor.

The commercial, retail, and apartment development is also providing one of the District’s most comprehensive community benefits packages, including approximately $22 million in contracting opportunities for local, small, and disadvantaged businesses. The new 205-unit “7th Flats” apartments in the project will also include fifty-one new affordable and workforce residences in the Shaw neighborhood.