December 27, 2005


HOLIDAY EXCHANGE: The replacement of the downtown Hechts with Macys has been known since last year, but not the timing. Well the new signage is expected to go up in March, employees anonymously told us. Aside from the sign and a different merchandise mix not much else will change about the store, which was recently renovated and looks terrific. The merchandise at the store will be updated throughout the year leading up to Christmas 06. Expect fewer designer brands and more of the Macys' in house brands, we are told.

Many of the nervous employees fear they will lose their jobs after the switch because Macys' parent -- Federated which just bought the F Street store -- historically relies on less staff than the May Co. owner of Hechts.


PROPERTY FOR SALE: The DC Council is considering selling development rights on land adjacent to the proposed baseball stadium to the Washington Nationals' new owner or development companies as a way to help cover potential cost overruns. Apparently the 15 acre stadium will consume only part of the 21 acre footprint. Oh maybe there is a way of out this mess.


Three leases signed for International Square for a total of 69,873 SF. Lawfirm Robin Kaplan Miller & Ciresi LLP signed on for 41,626 SF, the American Association for Clinical Chemistry signed for 15,068 SF and Aptify, a provider of enterprise business applications and e-Business software, signed for 13,119 SF. No word on what they paid for the space.

DC Public Schools, Superintendent Clifford B. Janey will provide an assessment of DC public schools in January -- his budget proposal and textbook audit. Plus the DC Council votes on school modernization package.

Opponents of the planned Intercounty Connector say that the proposed tolls will make it too expensive for some drivers to use the highway slated for the D.C. suburbs as a daily commuting option. We say deep six the highway and build light rail instead.


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