Partnership Unveils Plans for 9 Million-Square-Foot Entertainment District Anchored by New Arena for Washington Capitals, Wizards in Virginia

by Hayden Spiess

Alexandria, Va. — A partnership between developer JBG Smith (NYSE: JBGS) and Monumental Sports & Entertainment (MSE) has unveiled plans to build a mixed-use entertainment district totaling approximately 9 million square feet in Alexandria, just south of Washington, D.C. Anchoring the project will be a new arena for the NHL’s Washington Capitals and NBA’s Washington Wizards within National Landing, an area encompassing the interconnected neighborhoods of Potomac Yard, Crystal City and Pentagon City.  

Additionally, plans call for a global corporate headquarters for MSE, Monumental Sports Network media studio, Wizards practice facility, performing arts venue and e-sports facility. The development will be situated adjacent to the Virginia Tech Innovation Campus, the recently delivered Potomac Yard-VT Metro station and approximately 8.1 million square feet of future development opportunities. Project costs are estimated at $2 billion, according to The Washington Post.

The project, which is pending legislative approval and completion of documents, is scheduled for completion by the end of 2028. The Capitals and the Wizards would relocate to Virginia beginning in 2028, should the proposal become finalized.

The Capitals and the Wizards currently play at Capital One Arena in Washington, D.C. MSE says it is exploring the opportunity to make Capital One Arena the future home of the Washington Mystics of the Women’s National Basketball Association. The arena opened in 1997.

The Washington Post reported that D.C. leaders made an 11th-hour attempt to retain the Capitals and Wizards at Capital One Arena. According to the newspaper, Mayor Muriel Bowser and Council Chairman Phil Mendelson announced a bill late Tuesday night that, if passed, would offer MSE $500 million in public financing toward the rehabilitation of Capital One Arena. MSE had asked for $600 million.

The new arena is slated to be constructed on a currently unoccupied site totaling 12 acres that is situated between the Metro station entrance and the first phase of the Virginia Tech Innovation Campus. JBG Smith and its joint venture partner owns the site, which will be sold to a proposed Virginia sports and entertainment authority. The Commonwealth of Virginia, the City of Alexandria, MSE and JBG Smith are also making a significant joint infrastructure investment for the project site.

JBG Smith will serve as developer and is also the master developer of approximately 55 acres surrounding the project. Approximately two-thirds of JBG Smith’s holdings are in National Landing, which is home to Amazon’s HQ2 headquarters that opened this summer. The company’s stock price opened at $16 per share Wednesday, Dec. 13, down from $20.07 per share one year ago.

Led by Ted Leonsis, MSE owns eight professional sports teams, including the Capitals and Wizards, as well as six venues and one media platform.

— Kristin Harlow

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