Viewpoint: Don’t dispose of federal pre-war buildings. Do this instead.

In its interim report published in March, the Public Buildings Reform Board suggested downsizing the government’s massive real estate portfolio to address the significant underutilization of federally owned office buildings. If the federal government proceeds with a plan to dispose of buildings based on current utilization rates, it will have missed the opportunity of the century to modernize its real estate portfolio while simultaneously improving its downtown urban context.

Washington’s downtown, and particularly its federally occupied sector, is currently plagued by two seemingly unrelated problems which, if addressed simultaneously, might jump-start the revitalization of downtown while providing a long-term sustainable solution to the federal government’s office occupancy issues.

Let’s start by separately identifying the two problems. The first is related to the nature of the buildings that make up much of the federal inventory. A significant portion of the federal building…

Read the full story from the Washington Business Journal.
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