Mary Switzer Building Washington, DC Exterior Improvements

Environmental Assessment

GSA is proposing site improvements at the Mary E. Switzer Building in Washington, DC.  A Final Environmental Assessment (EA) has been prepared that analyzes the impacts that could result from the proposed action and its alternatives.  GSA also initiated consultation under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act, 16 U.S.C. 470f.  GSA finalized the EA and issued a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) to the public in July 2010.  At the time the EA was prepared and the FONSI was released, GSA had selected Alternative B as the preferred alternative.  Based on the fact that Alternative A more fully meets the purpose and need for the action, by providing more welcoming pedestrian space, providing greater green space, and enhancing sustainability, GSA has selected Alternative A for implementation.  The selection of Alternative A is also supported by comments received from review agencies during both the NEPA and the design approval

The actions analyzed in the EA include:

  • enhanced landscaping around the Switzer Building,
  • implementation of perimeter security,
  • changes to driveway locations and sidewalks to enhance pedestrian safety,
  • conversion of surface parking to a combination of landscaped plazas, gardens, and parking.

GSA is also exploring ways to integrate sustainability practices into the design of the proposed project. Alternatives analyzed in the EA differ in the amount of surface parking to be converted to landscaped plaza, as well as landscaping and perimeter security design concepts. All alternatives analyze narrowing C Street, SW, between 3rd and 4th Streets, SW. Narrowing C Street would be needed to improve pedestrian circulation. A no action alternative is also analyzed.

The impacts of each of these alternatives on the natural and man-made environment are analyzed in the EA. Issues studied in the EA include:

  • Land Use
  • Planning Policies
  • Public Square
  • Historic Resources
  • Archaeological Resources
  • Visual Resources
  • Geophysical Resources
  • Vehicular Circulation
  • Parking
  • Public Transportation
  • Pedestrian/Bicycle Circulation
  • Energy Use and Sustainability
  • Utilities
  • Air Quality
  • Noise Levels

Environmental Assessment Conclusion

A Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) was finalized on May 5, 2011. No information was received or came to light during the public review period leading to a contrary finding and an Environmental Impact Statement will not be prepared.


Action Selected for Implementation

GSA has selected Alternative A for implementation. Alternative A would best achieve a site that employs sustainable features in its design and is inviting to both employees and visitors, while still incorporating physical security elements into the landscape.


Please review the following document for further information:

Final Switzer FONSI [PDF, 325 KB]


Last Reviewed 2015-03-12