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Without too much discussion, the WMATA board of directors has just approved the sale of the Southeastern Bus Garage at Half and M streets to the John Akridge Development Company. There was a brief exchange between Jim Graham and (I believe) the corporate counsel about what was apparently an "escalator clause" in Monument Realty's bid for the garage site, stating that their $60 million bid should be raised to $250,000 above the higher bid. The counsel indicated that the sale was not being handled under a Request for Proposals, but under a sealed bid process that WMATA procedures stipulate do not allow for alternative bids. The counsel also said that Monument's bid in fact stated that if WMATA's procedures did not allow for alternative bids, to then revert to Monument's $60 million initial bid.
With that cleared up, and with a bit of discussion about how these sorts of property sales should be handled in the future, the board voted to approve the sale. However, settlement on the deal is still contingent on the board's approval of a new Southeastern Bus Garage project at DC Village in Southwest, which Graham pleaded be handled as quickly as possible to ensure that the buses are out of Half and M before Opening Day 2008, so that both pedestrian safety issues and additional ballpark parking can be addressed.
So now we'll wait and see if Monument follows through with the threats detailed in this morning's Post to possibly file suit over not being awarded the garage site, or slow down their work on the expansion of the Navy Yard Metro station across the street, which would seem to not really be a good way to endear yourself to the public, the city, or WMATA.
If you want to listen to the audio of the meeting, it will be available here once the meeting itself is finished. And I did put together a new Bus Garage section under my Ballpark District pages, with just a few photos of the site. (Finally. Guess I never thought it would turn into such a perpetual topic of conversation.)
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1300 4TH ST SE 1001   
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AP BOWER RETAIL LLC / null
E2104231 / SUPPLEMENTAL
1346 4TH ST SE APT 1M   
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CXS TRANSPORTATION INC / VICTORIA STEINHOFF; TBD
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