While Mayor Fenty awarded a contract to Whiting-Turner today for the CFL, the DC Council was busy with work of their own in Southwest. Today, according to DCMud, the Council finally approved the ground lease between the city and E Street Development, which will allow the construction of a new Engine 13 firehouse next door to the new CFL, along with two office buildings with ground floor retail. The city chose E Street Development from a pool of three development teams back in April, but in July, the Council delayed action on the land transfer until after the August recess. Then, last month, Council member Kwame Brown removed the land deal from consideration because E Street Development did not have signed agreements to hire city-certified small businesses or hire District residents. It appears that those concerns have been addressed. Now that the ground lease has been approved, planning can continue for the project, with construction slated to begin on the first office building (with the new firehouse on the ground level) next August. Above is a rendering of the new firehouse on the corner of 4th & E Street, designed by Beyer, Blinder, Belle, from E Street Development's February 25th presentation.