Aerospace company EADS North America and subsidiary Airbus Americas are to relocate in November to a new building overlooking Dulles Airport as part of a consolidation effort.
As a result, EADS is to vacate space in two Rosslyn office buildings, including one that sported its logo up until last week, while Airbus is to leave its Herndon location. The move makes EADS the latest to leave the traditional contracting stronghold along the Potomac River, following Northrop Grumman’s departure for Falls Church and Boeing’s decision to consolidate its local operations in a new facility in Crystal City.
Sean O’Keefe, chief executive at EADS North America, and Barry Eccleston, president and chief executive at Airbus Americas, began considering a consolidation about a year and a half ago, as part of regular discussions about how the two companies could collaborate better, said O’Keefe.
The lease on the Airbus office in Herndon was ending in December 2011, prompting the two to consider consolidating with EADS North America, which leases three floors at 1616 Ft. Myer Dr. and three at 1100 Wilson Blvd., both in Rosslyn.
With plans to consolidate nearly 300 people — 176 from EADS and 120 from Airbus — the companies began looking at office space throughout the D.C. area, including Maryland, downtown Washington and Rosslyn, said O’Keefe.
EADS settled on an almost brand new office next to Dulles (at 2550 Wasser Terrace in Herndon), which the company has named One Global View following an employee vote. EADS North America and Airbus America, which are set to relocate in mid-November, will use all but one floor of the facility.
O’Keefe said the new facility is cheaper and will allow the two companies to work together more. Additionally, he and Airbus Americas spokesman Clay McConnell touted the benefits of being based next to Dulles, where they said incoming and outgoing flights will have a view of their logos.
EADS is to keep a handful of employees in Rosslyn, particularly those in marketing and government relations who benefit from being close to the Pentagon and Capitol Hill. But O’Keefe said a larger portion of the local employees now work in areas such as program and contract management, which doesn’t require that kind of proximity.
The company has been able to get out of its lease at 1616 Ft. Myer, which had another year remaining, and is still in negotiations over its lease at 1300 Wilson, which has two years remaining.
Terry Holzheimer, director of Arlington economic development, said EADS’ decision was based on its plan to consolidate, rather than a reflection on Arlington.
“Moving in, moving out, moving around is pretty common in most industries,” he said. Arlington still retains a large number of defense contractors, and “I don’t think that’s likely to change.”
Correction: A previous verseion of this story listed an incorrect address. It is 1300 Wilson, not 1100 Wilson.