Capitol Percussion to Open Music Studios in UMD’s Discovery District


Musical instrument retailer Capitol Percussion + Backline is moving out of its D.C. digs, and plans to open a music studio in the 150-acre Discovery District at the University of Maryland.

CP+B signed an 8,900-square-foot lease at 5650 Rivertech Court, a 57,120-square-foot, single-story, flex warehouse building in Riverdale, Md., owned by St. John Properties.  

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No lease terms were disclosed.

CP+B offers instruments, sound equipment and stage essentials throughout the Washington, D.C., and Baltimore regions. It was founded by Jauvon Gilliam, principal timpanist of the National Symphony Orchestra and artist-in-residence at the University of Maryland at College Park.

“The Discovery District was the perfect landing spot; with me already being connected to the University of Maryland, I know what a wonderful institution it is,” Gilliam told Commercial Observer. “The university’s culture, vision, and mission is in lockstep with CP+B’s, and that made moving to the Discovery District a no-brainer. Also, it’s inside the beltway and near public transportation, allowing clients easy access.”

CP+B is relocating its headquarters from its current home at 611 Pennsylvania Avenue SE in D.C. to create what Gilliam calls, “The Shed.” When complete, it will boast four professionally soundproofed, interconnected flex studios used for rehearsals, recordings, livestreams, private lessons, practice space, photography shoots, interviews and podcasts. There will also be office space, a control room for the large studio, a green room and a break room.   

According to Gilliam, he began looking for a larger warehouse space to house the company’s equipment and that quickly turned into a search for an expanded facility that fulfilled a larger vision. 

“Throughout the process, while assessing our core business storage needs with the intent to expand into something completely different, we realized an old, dimly lit warehouse space would not serve our new purpose,” he said. “We have a fantastic team here at CP+B. I wanted to take that culture and build on it, and create an inviting, functional space where artists can feed off of each other — it’s in those collaborative moments where the magic truly happens. Little did I know that the perfect space was right under my nose near the University of Maryland the entire time.”

The property is situated less than a mile from the University of Maryland College Park campus, adjacent to the College Park Metro/MARC train station and the proposed Purple Line.

Notable tenants in the Discovery District include the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Claire Cobert of St. John Properties represented the landlord in the deal. Judi Garrett and Bobby Kauffman, agents with the meta commercial team within Long & Foster Real Estate‘s commercial division represented the client.

Keith Loria can be reached at