Mayor Adrian Fenty yesterday unveiled the Office of Property Management's (OPM) first-ever District of Columbia Facilities Plan - a "comprehensive strategy" for managing and consolidating the DC government's 18 million square feet plus of property and 3.7 million square feet of privately leased space in a streamlined and cost efficient manner.
The OPM plan outlines measures that will reduce the city's amount of leased space by 13% (roughly 500,000 square feet) over the next year by relocating staff to shuttered DC public schools and consolidating warehouse operations. It also provides concrete timelines for the construction of new District-owned office space - including the currently underway Department of Employee Services at Benning Road and Minnesota Avenue, NE (pictured) and the recently announced MPD Property and Evidence Warehouse in Southwest. DC Public Schools and Libraries, however, will be unaffected by the Facilities Plan, as they are governed by their own distinct agencies.
The plan includes a provision requiring all DC-sponsored projects to meet a minimum LEED silver certification. OPM Director Robin-Eve Jasper did, however, point out that the plan is “Version 1.0” and will be subject to revision as new opportunities present themselves.
"A lot of things change about property – about the needs, about the market and other things - are very dynamic in real estate. We will be regularly updating this plan to address new things that come up,” said Jasper.
In addition to the master Facilities Plan, OPM also used the occasion to announce the release of its HOK Architects-authored (and phone book thick) Workplace Design Guidelines that, in the words of District reps, “standardizes the materials and furnishings that can be used in District office buildings” through bulk purchases and codified style standards.
“This will be a common brand making sure that efficiencies bring big cost savings,” said Fenty. Because, as we all know, the best way to attract DC’s best and brightest to local government is by forcing them to all use identical mauve swivel chairs in their mass produced cubicles. Oy.