Davis Memorial Goodwill Industries, the 48-year-old Washington rehabilitation organization for the handicapped, has opened a new thrift store and materials processing plant at a nine-acre site on South Dakota Avenue in Northeast Washington.

Goodwill's Washington center, which takes in over 80 percent of its annual $3.8 million operating budget from sales of items restored by handicapped persons who work there, is the newest of the organization's 176 national outlets. he 98,000-square-foot facility, which employs 250 people, more than triples the floor space available at the old West Virginia Avenue NE store that it replaced. It consolidates and expands the size of the processing facility, training operations and executive offices that had been divided up between the District property and a processing plant and store on Duke Street in Alexandria.

The building was designed by the Kern's Group, Architects and was built by Davis Construction Co., both of Washington, at a total cost, including the real estate, of $10 million.

Mollie Haines, Goodwill's vice president for public relations, said the new center will be particularly useful during the rush season at the end of the year when the plant is swamped with items from people making last-minute, tax-deductible contributions.

Last week's grand opening was one of the most successful in the charitable organization's history, Haines said. Approximately 3,500 people attended, including representatives from the White House and D.C. government.

"And they didn't just come to look," she said.

All told, the store took in nearly $13,000 during a five-hour period from receipts on about 50,000 items sold, ranging from a Waterford crystal dish for 15 cents to an eight-piece antique bedroom set for $900.