Doan Strongly Supports Federal Presence in Prince George's County
Lurita Alexis Doan
U.S. General Services administration
Prince George’s County Forum
National Archives at College Park
April 7, 2008
Thank you and good afternoon.
I would hope it goes without saying, but I’ll say it anyway: GSA recognizes and appreciates the value of Prince George’s County as a prime location for federal workspace. Our feelings should be evident by the substantial presence we already have here. But I believe that we can do more, that we must do more to make sure that our federal workers and real estate planners are aware of the quality facilities available in Prince George’s County.
I’ve been to this Maryland suburb many times. As administrator and as an entrepreneur, I understand the need to ensure that Prince George’s County is given fair and competitive access to government leases. In fact, it was about a year and a half ago, at Congressman Hoyer’s and Congressman Wynn’s request, that I came for my first official visit to Prince George’s county as the GSA Administrator. I can tell you, when congressman Hoyer says there is class "A" office space available, he isn’t exaggerating—I was truly impressed by the development underway in Prince George’s County. I saw splendid high-rises, excellent shopping; buildings underway, and I saw the literal green fields where buildings are planned, but not yet built.
Of course, GSA is no stranger to Prince George’s County. GSA occupies about 8-and-a-half million square feet in this county: 4.5 million owned, 3.9 million leased, to be exact.
Thanks to Majority Leader Hoyer’s support, we have recently replaced several of our owned assets.
During calendar year 2007, GSA awarded five leases in Prince George’s County for 164,000 square feet.
For this calendar year, we anticipate awarding two large leases which include Prince George’s County in the delineated area. They are:
-A 935,000-square-foot replacement lease for the Department of Health & Human Services facilities located in the Parklawn Building in Rockville. This lease will be competed in Suburban Maryland;
-And a new, 180,000-square-foot facility for the FBI. This one is being competed in suburban Maryland, Northern Virginia, and in the District of Columbia.
Let me assure you that we understand Prince George’s County’s desire to have GSA procuring more leases here. In fact, we’ve implemented some changes recently that make it more difficult for agencies not to include Prince George’s county in the Maryland suburb delineated area.
Some of the hurdles we face are tricky. For example, once federal agencies establish a footprint somewhere, they tend to expand nearby. Employees end up moving closer to work. Soon it becomes more comfortable for everyone to stay put, even when agencies outgrow their existing locations. Working together, we have overcome some of that inertia.
And, I brought senior management from my team at GSA here today. In addition to the many folks from our Public Buildings Service who will be networking with you afterwards, I also have Tony Reed, the Regional Administrator for GSA’s National Capital Region, Bart Bush, the Public Buildings Service’s Associate Regional Administrator; Fran Ryan, who directly manages all projects in Prince George’s County; and Kevin Messner, GSA’s Associate Administrator for Congressional and Intergovernmental Affairs. And of course, you can always contact me—my email is firstname.lastname@example.org.
So, I am asking all of the federal real estate planners in the audience to help me. You have the ability to make a difference. You have the ability to ensure that Prince George’s county is listed in your agency’s delineated area building prospectus. You have the ability to take advantage of the many developments underway and host tours of Prince George’s County to ensure that your workforce understands that an enhanced quality of life is possible for a workforce residing in Prince George’s County. And you can start now.
To all of you here today who are stakeholders in the success of Prince George’s County, let me tell you that you have a committed and outstanding advocate in Congressman Hoyer. In the long run, I would say that prospects look very good for an increased rate of leasing activity here in Prince George’s County.
Thank you for taking the time to attend today’s meeting. I’m going to end now and let National Capital Region Administrator Tony Reed give you an additional perspective.
Thank you very much.