2015 | 2015

Fitness Center Will Take Over Historic Bethesda Post Office

The historic old Bethesda Post Office has a new tenant.

Bridges Fitness & Yoga, from the brothers who founded Bethesda-based software firm Opnet, will move into the historic building that was built in 1938 and sold in 2012 to the Donohoe Companies.

Donohoe Development Senior Vice President Jad Donohoe confirmed the fitness and yoga studio would be moving in. A website for Bridges Fitness & Yoga says it will open in downtown Bethesda in September 2015.

Alain and Marc Cohen, owners of the gym, couldn’t be reached for comment on Wednesday afternoon.

In 1986, the Cohen brothers founded Opnet, an application performance management firm. In 2000, the company went public and eventually grew to 700 employees. About half of those employees were based at Opnet’s Bethesda headquarters.

In 2012, the brothers sold Opnet to San Francisco-based Riverbed Technology for $1 billion. Riverbed maintained the firm’s Bethesda Row office location.

The gym is part of the Cohen brothers’ Cobro Ventures Inc. The website promises yoga, cardio and strength training in a state-of-the-art facility and “a beautiful, inspiring, and calming setting — an oasis in busy downtown Bethesda.”

It will be quite a departure from the old Post Office building, which has been designated historic. It was built in 1938 as part of the New Deal. 

Today, it occupies a spot in the center of downtown Bethesda, next to the Hyatt Regency hotel and Bethesda Metro station.

Facing financial troubles, the U.S. Postal Service sold the building to the Donohoe Companies in 2012 for $4 million.

Few interior modifications have been made since.