The General Services Administration has announced that the Federal Reserve Building will go up for auction on December 5th with an opening bid of $5M. The closing date for bids is January 28th, 2015.
From the GSA website:
At the close of the auction, the high bid will be considered for acceptance by the Government. The Government reserves the right to reject any or all bids for any reason.
The building cannot be demolished because of historic preservation regulations (although the zoning for that area would allow unlimited height if those regulations did not apply to the building).
That right there will severely limit the number of bidders.
So, the district could try to bid on it and obviously, set a limit on how high they go. I suspect the money could be found a number of ways. Of course, then it would be quite awhile for the district to find the real money to renovate it. Is that worth it? Possibly.
Or, as one commenter at the Times said, "Here is an opportunity for civic donors to step up..." "They can buy the building at auction and gift it to the district."
There's a thought.