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$70M GSA Revamp Set for 19 States

Monday, April 28, 2014

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The U.S. government will slash a half-million square feet of office space, and relocate an unknown number of employees, in a $70 million consolidation plan that will trigger projects in 19 states.

The U.S. General Services Administration, the nation's largest landlord, has identified 19 federally owned sites  that will be retooled to allow a variety of federal agencies to consolidate their workspace, the agency announced April 21.

The project will eventually cut millions of dollars from rent and leasing costs and from expensive operation of underused or inefficient space, GSA says.

Evo A. DeConcini Courthouse

The Evo A. DeConcini Federal Courthouse is one of 19 properties set for renovation under the consolidation plan. The Tucson, AZ, building will get a $3.9 million upgrade.

The federal government has been working to shrink its brick-and-mortar footprint for some time, through programs such as Total Workplace and through ongoing property disposal. To that end, GSA has been seeking to sell, swap, lease or otherwise dispose of millions of square feet nationwide that it can no longer use.

The effort has produced some novel initiatives. Recently, the agency offered to give buildings in need of redevelopment in exchange for construction services on several Washington, D.C., buildings.

Scaling Back

The new consolidation effort is aimed at reducing costs by eliminating multiple leases, as well as scaling back the federal government’s energy and water consumption.

The GSA currently provides workspace for more than a million federal workers in both federally owned and leased space across more than 9,000 properties—377.9 million square feet of workspace in all.

Javits Building Peachtree Fed Building
Wikimedia Commons / Jim.henderson (left) and Chloe Fan (right)

GSA will invest $5 million to renovate the Jacob K. Javits Federal Building (left) in New York City and $509,000 on the Peachtree Summit Federal Building in Atlanta. Both were built in the 1970s.

"As dedicated stewards of the public trust and the environment, GSA is committed to assisting federal agencies in reducing their carbon footprint and employing cost-effective green building strategies," the agency said.

GSA says the consolidation plan will:

  • Save federal agencies $17 million in annual rent payments;
  • Reduce the federal footprint by 507,000 rentable square feet; and
  • Reduce the government’s leasing costs by more than $38 million.

The plan will affect one federal building in each of 19 cities, a GSA spokeswoman told the Federal Times.

The agency is not yet saying when, where or how many federal employees will eventually be relocated because of the consolidation.

'A New Day for Office Space'

“As public servants, we have a responsibility to serve the American people as effectively and efficiently as possible," GSA Administrator Dan Tangherlini said in the announcement.

"By consolidating these locations, we are not just eliminating redundant rents and space, but also encouraging collaboration among  government workers by creating open workspace. We’re ushering in a new day for office space throughout the federal government.”

St. Elizabeths
Creative Commons / Tomf688

The Center Building at St. Elizabeths Hospital in Washington D.C. dates to the U.S. Civil War. The hospital campus is in the middle of a major renovation that will consolidate several agencies there.

Consolidation is not a new plan for GSA, but the scope of the new list is. A multiyear redevelopment effort is currently underway at the old St. Elizabeths Hospital complex in Washington, D.C.

When complete, the unified and newly secured campus will house the new headquarters of the U.S. Coast Guard, the Department of Homeland Security, and other federal agencies.

Project List

GSA issued this Project Consolidation List, with the amount allocated for each renovation, with the announcement.

Project Name Amount Allocated ($)
Jacob K. Javits Federal Building & 201 Varick Street – NYC 5,000,000
George H. Fallon Federal Building – Baltimore, MD 621,000
Norfolk Federal Building - Norfolk, VA 1,811,000
Peachtree Summit – Atlanta, GA 509,000
Schiller Park – Vernon Hills, IL 520,000
Austin Federal Courthouse – Austin, TX 14,416,000
Wallace F. Bennett Federal Office Building – Salt Lake City, UT 4,400,000
Evo A. DeConcini Courthouse – Tucson, AZ 3,804,000
300 North Los Angeles - Los Angeles, CA 5,000,000
Guarantee Savings Building – Fresno, CA 155,000
Chet Holifield Federal Building – Laguna Niguel, CA 674,000
Ronald Dellums – Oakland, CA 1,470,000
Edward J. Schwartz FB & CH – San Diego, CA (2 projects) 5,020,000
        U.S. Trustees      2,733,000
        Federal Protective Service      2,287,000
911 Federal Building – Portland, OR 2,148,000
Bank of America Fifth Ave & Jackson FB – Seattle, WA 1,143,000
Hubert H. Humphrey Building – Washington, DC 6,740,000
Mary E. Switzer Building, 330 C Street SW – Washington, DC 10,384,000
7980 Science Applications Court – Vienna, VA 3,569,000
Total $67,384,000



Tagged categories: Construction; Energy efficiency; Government; Government contracts; Office Buildings; Renovation

Comment from Jim Johnson, (4/28/2014, 11:53 AM)

One can only wonder why the GSA has 9000 properties to begin with. There are several government reports recommending the GSA sell off a significant percentage of those properties to cut maintenance costs and generate income. Do we really need 9000 buildings, many of which are vacant?

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