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Posted at 7:25 PM ET, 03/ 9/2011

Mark Center lawsuit seeks $30 million in damages

By Christy Goodman

The Center for Naval Analyses filed a $30 million lawsuit Wednesday against Duke Realty Corp. for breech of contract.

The lawsuit in Alexandria Circuit Court contends that Duke Realty violated lease obligations for the center's headquarters in the Mark Center off Seminary Road and Interstate 395. The center's management signed a lease for a business park campus, not a military installation, said a spokesman for the non-profit research firm that serves federal clients.

The Department of Defense bought the adjacent property from Duke Realty and built a massive complex that will house 6,400 federal workers as part of the 2005 Base Relocation and Closure, or BRAC, moves. The complex includes the office building, parking garages and a bomb-detection facility.

Employees who work at the center will face "a serious negative impact" when the new facility opens, said Robert J. Murray, CAN CNA president and chief executive officer, in a statement.

"We never intended to be part of Fort Belvoir," Murray said.

"Access to our building has already been affected and will get dramatically worse when the new BRAC facilities open," said Murray, who added that emergency services will not be able to respond as quickly due to traffic congestion. "And CNA now has the unfortunate distinction of having a bomb inspection facility located immediately adjacent to our building."

The Center for Naval Analyses CNA tried to work with Duke Realty to re-negotiate their lease, which ends in 2015, before filing the suit, he said.

Duke Realty has not returned comment.

This post has been updated since it was first published.

By Christy Goodman  | March 9, 2011; 7:25 PM ET
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