Washington, D.C., Retail Market Report
Retailers Begin Road to Recovery While Rising Construction Adds to Near-Term Hurdles
Resilience of suburban stores to aid outlook this year. The health crisis has challenged retailers in the nation’s capital. After staying about flat for three years, vacancy shot up in 2020 as nearly 2 million more square feet became vacant. Storefronts along major urban corridors in neighborhoods such as Georgetown and Dupont Circle have been most impaired due to the loss of daily foot traffic, while less dense residential areas are proving more resilient. Shops in northern Virginia submarkets such as Tysons Corner and Reston are benefiting from years of household growth and above-average incomes. Anacostia and South Prince George County property performance is also surpassing the market. More stringent capacity limits currently in place within the District will hamper performance this year compared with retailers in the suburban areas of Maryland and Virginia.