WASHINGTON, DC – The Meridian Group announced today that it has closed on the sale of 6.9 acres rezoned for residential use at Shady Grove in Rockville, MD.

The Meridian Group, a real estate investment and development firm based in Bethesda, MD, sold the property to the Hanover Company for approximately $16 million. Houston-based Hanover plans to build 366 apartment units on the site – formerly zoned for offices -- at Shady Grove Road and the I-270 interchange.

Leading the sales effort for The Meridian Group was Managing Director Gary Block.

“We had tremendous interest in this property thanks to its ideal location,” Block said. “Meridian and Hanover worked well together and hammered out a very good deal.” 

Meridian sold five buildings at the Shady Grove Executive Center in 2003 but kept two development sites there along with a parking structure. Meridian proceeded with the re-entitlement process in Montgomery County to change the use from office to residential through both an amendment to the County Master Plan and a rezoning. David Cheek, Co-founder and President of The Meridian Group, led those successful efforts, completed in 2012. 

Meridian marketed the re-entitled sites for sale to residential developers, and contracted with the Hanover Company to sell them the residential sites at final site-plan approval. 

The sale comes just days after Meridian closed on its purchase of the landmark 18-acre corporate headquarters campus of Science Applications International Corp. (SAIC). The deal included four office buildings at Tysons Corner totaling 900,000 square feet.

The purchase was made through Meridian’s $160-million discretionary real estate fund -- Meridian Realty Partners I -- one of the largest equity funds focused on real estate in the Washington, DC metropolitan area.

The property is located on Route 7 at the new Greensboro Metro station, which is expected to open in early 2014. Bounded by Westpark Drive and Greensboro Drive, the property sits in a major submarket of Tysons known as “The Hill” near Tysons Galleria Mall.

Meridian plans to tear down one of the buildings. The other three buildings – called Towers I, II and III -- total 640,000 square feet on 3.4 acres adjacent to the Metro station.

As part of the sale, SAIC is committing to occupy Tower III for the long term, and Meridian will be renovating and repositioning Towers I and II. The repositioning will provide for over $20 million in capital improvements to the properties, ensuring a Class A experience for tenants seeking proximity to Metro along with the amenities of Tysons Corner. Among the significant upgrades: new lobbies and common areas, elevator cabs, HVAC systems, and pedestrian walkways and plazas near the Metro station. 

Since 1993, the Meridian Group has acquired over 7.5 million square feet of office, industrial, retail, and hotel properties, as well as over 400 acres of land – all totaling over $2.5 billion in value. Prior to the formation of Meridian Realty Partners I, Meridian’s transactions were capitalized through joint ventures. Meridian’s partners have included The Blackstone Group, Goldman Sachs, The Carlyle Group, and Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company.