In advance of the National Association of Broadcasting show in Las Vegas next week, NAB announced it has a deal with a Washington developer to move its headquarters closer to Capitol Hill and the Federal Communications Commission building (as well as a baseball's throw away from National's Park).
NAB used to be only a few blocks from the FCC, but the commission itself moved closer to the Capitol and the Potomac river front in the 1990s.
NAB said it has a deal to purchase a completed headquarters in the Capitol Riverfront neighborhood (South Capitol and M Streets, SE) with a move-in date by fall 2018 and ground-breaking by spring 2016. The area is undergoing a renaissance, driven in part by the location of the baseball stadium along the water front.
Moving its digs closer to Capitol Hill -- and within a block of the subway -- will put NAB president Gordon Smith closer to his former stomping grounds as senator from Oregon and current stomping grounds as advocate for broadcasting on the Hill and at the commission.
NAB will be selling its DuPont circle headquarters -- built in 1969 -- to help finance the new building, which will feature a Capitol view, rooftop terrace and a 100-seat theater. The statement NAB is making is that broadcasting is a player, and one that is here to stay.
"We're thrilled that we have found a new home," Smith said in announcing the agreement with Monument Realty. "The new building will be a showcase venue for radio and television stations across America, and will send a strong message to public policymakers on the vibrant future of local broadcasting."
NAB has been trying to make the point of that vibrant future even as the NAB and Congress have focused on freeing up broadcast spectrum for broadband.