EMSI and its sister company, EPI Partners, are going forward with plans to develop and build on several acres of city-owned land in Manassas Park, despite the looming threat of sequestration.
Manassas Park City Council in December approved EMSI's conceptual master plan for a 45,000-square-foot office building to be built on the 8 acres of land directly behind City Center that extends to Euclid Avenue.
But since the approval, the threat of massive federal spending cuts have become more apparent to lawmakers, government contractors and others.
"Overall, the economy is not bad, but we just don't know what's going to happen," said Talal “TJ” Hassan, a member of EPI Partners.
The partners plan on submitting a site plan to Manassas Park City Council in April and hope to begin construction in September or October, depending on how fast the appropriate permits can be processed, Hassan said.
"The development is well thought out and is a place that people will see and say, 'I want to be there,'" he added.
In addition to office building space, residential units and an assisted living facility will also be built on the eight acres.
Hassan said he knows government spending cuts will affect many business and people in Northern Virginia, but he hopes it doesn't adversely affect the project.
"People who use it (the building) use the VRE (Virgina Railway Express) and those people work for the federal government," Hassan said.
But whatever happens, the partners will press forward.
"We can not stop," Hassan said.
The tenants in one of the group's office buildings on Capital Street in Manassas are largely government contractors, he said.
Hassan and the other owners have been in contact with their tenants and many have expressed worry about government spending cuts.
They have reduced rental fees to help their clients, he said.
"We have been talking back and forth. We said, 'If you're in trouble, let us know so we can accommodate you,'" he said.
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