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WASHINGTON, DC-Whiting-Turner has been awarded a $133-million contract to build the District’s Consolidated Forensic Laboratory–a 287,000-square-foot, six-story structure that will ultimately cost the District $220 million including specialized equipment. The building will house a number of public health and safety functions, including the Metropolitan Police Department Forensic Laboratory, the Department of Health Public Health Laboratory and the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner.

Located at 415 4th St., SW, the building will be on the site of the former MPD First District headquarters. The First District recently moved to the former Bowen School in southwest, so the current building there could be demolished. The $133M includes abatement and demolition of the old building as well as a 35% set-aside for Certified Business Enterprises.

The building is being designed to LEED Gold standards. The Fenty Administration awarded the construction management contract last year to Jacobs Engineering. The A/E firm of HOK is the project design architects. The Mayor’s office did not return a call to GlobeSt.com in time for publication.

The Fenty Administration’s approach to economic development and real estate in the District is a multi-tiered one. It will lease space from private sector landlords, but will also develop its own buildings in certain circumstances. This laboratory is one example. Another is the construction of a 229,000-square-foot headquarters for DC’s Department of Employment Services. Located next to the Minnesota Avenue Metro Station in Northeast Washington, the $48-million building is expected to deliver in early 2011.

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