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Companies set to lease space at Fort Monroe
By Josh Brown
Officials overseeing Fort Monroe's transition to civilian control are taking the first steps toward finding tenants for the nearly 2 million square feet of space that the Army is set to leave behind in less than two years.
The Fort Monroe Federal Area Development Authority announced this week it has hired two real estate companies to lease and manage building space as it becomes available.
The fort's closure was announced in 2005, and the Army will leave in 2011. Most of the 565 acres will revert to the state.
More than half of the space available is 278 housing units - apartments and single-family homes - said Bill Armbruster, executive director of the authority.
The balance of the space available could be used for office and retail, he said. The authority will take over management of an initial 118 units in August. Armbruster said the authority won't require families living there to leave but will take over as their landlord.
The authority hired Old Point Comfort Real Estate Services LLC - a joint venture between Virginia Beach-based Divaris Real Estate and Norfolk-based Frye Properties Inc. - to manage leasing.
Armbruster said the idea is to try to get space filled as soon as the Army leaves it.
"It's really an exciting opportunity for us to keep this community a vibrant community and avoid a mothball situation," he said.
"The challenge, of course, is virtually all of these buildings are full. All of the office moves will take place next summer. As buildings do become available, we're going to try to have potential tenants lined up to go in there."
Josh Brown, (757) 446-2318, firstname.lastname@example.org