SUITLAND, MD-Employees of the US Census Bureau are half way to taking occupancy of their new home, now that the US General Services Administration has topped out on the agency’s 1.5-million-sf headquarters at the Suitland Federal Center. The complex will cost an estimated $335 million to complete and will allow the bureau to bring about 6,000 of its employees from six other on-site and nearby facilities under one roof.

A final completion date for the two-phase endeavor–the first segment of which encompasses about 770,000 sf of office space and one parking facility, while the second portion will yield the remaining 730,000 sf of office space and another parking garage–is scheduled for the end of March 2007. The first phase of the two interconnected buildings will be ready for occupancy in October of next year.

“GSA is using the design-build bridging method to construct the new Census headquarters,” a GSA spokesperson shares with “This enables us to deliver the new facility to Census so that they will be fully moved in by the time they begin the 2010 decennial census.”

Skanska USA Building Inc. won the design-build contract for the headquarters and tapped architectural firm Skidmore Owings & Merrill to handle the design aspect of the buildings, which will center on a courtyard and sit across from the parking facilities; facilities that will accommodate as many as 3,100 vehicles. DMJM/Heery Joint Venture is serving as the construction management team.

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