2007 Buildings Census: Government Owners

Sept. 1, 2007
Facilities/support departments in federal government agencies

Department of Veterans Affairs
Washington, D.C.
(800) 827-1000
From 54 hospitals in 1930, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) now owns, occupies, and operates one of the largest healthcare-related real estate portfolios in the United States. The portfolio, valued at $35 billion, includes more than 1,400 sites of care, including 872 ambulatory-care and community-based outpatient clinics, 135 nursing homes, 45 residential rehabilitation-treatment programs, 209 veterans centers, and 108 comprehensive home-care programs. The VA also manages the largest medical education and health profession training program in the United States. VA facilities are affiliated with 107 medical schools, 55 dental schools, and more than 1,200 other schools nationwide. VA has experienced unprecedented growth in the medical system workload over the past few years. The number of patients treated increased by 29 percent, from 4.2 million in 2001 to nearly 5.5 million in 2006. $1.1 billion is requested for 2008 construction programs. The major construction request is for six medical facilities in Pittsburgh; Denver; Orlando, FL; Las Vegas; Syracuse, NY; and Lee County, FL.

Federal Bureau of Prisons
Washington, D.C.
(202) 307-3198
At the time of its inception in 1930, the Federal Bureau of Prisons oversaw humane, consistent, and centralized administration of 11 prisons. Today, the system consists of 80 federal correctional institutions, 12 federal correctional complexes, 12 private facilities, six regional offices, one central office complex, two training centers, and 28 community corrections-management offices in six regions. The bureau is responsible for the custody and care of approximately 193,000 federal offenders; about 85 percent of these inmates are confined in bureau-operated correctional facilities or detention centers, and the rest are confined through agreements with state and local governments or through contracts with privately operated community corrections centers, detention centers, prisons, and juvenile facilities.

General Services Administration's Public Buildings Service*Washington, D.C. (202) 501-1100www.gsa.gov/pbsThe U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) Public Buildings Service (PBS) is the largest public real estate organization in the nation and provider of workspace and workplace solutions to more than 1 million federal employees and their contractors. Twenty-five (25) percent of PBS's buildings are historic buildings. Although it's a government agency, it operates much like a private-sector real estate organization. In a 2006 tenant survey, designed to measure tenant satisfaction, GSA received a combined (owned and leased) 79.6-percent highly satisfactory ratings from more than 47,755 tenants. By conducting HVAC Excellence Quality Assurance Reviews, PBS significantly improves customer satisfaction by providing good IAQ while maintaining thermal comfort at reasonable utility costs. PBS was the first agency out of 15 to be recognized by the Bush Administration for achieving "Green" status on the Presidential Management Agenda scorecard in Federal Real Property Asset Management. 9,724 Government Buildings*: 400 million square feet. Dollar Volume of Spending in 2007 Devoted/Estimated Toward Facilities*: Capital, $1.7 billion; Operational, $2.1 billion. Projects in New Construction and/or Modernization (Completed in 2007)*: New Construction, 794,786 square feet (two projects); Modernization, 4.5 million square feet (seven projects). Projects in New Construction and/or Modernization (Completed Beyond 2007)*: New Construction, 26.4 million square feet (72 projects); Modernization, 75.7 million square feet (125 projects). Number of Professionals Involved Full Time in Facilities*: 5,826.

Smithsonian Institution
Washington, D.C.
(202) 633-1000
Since 2001, the "nation's attic" has focused not only on preserving the multitude of treasures stored within the wall of its 19 hallowed museums, but also on the museums themselves. The Smithsonian Institution's Facilities Capital Program underpins the institution's overall mission and represents a vital investment in the long-term interest of the nation. The Smithsonian's $2.3 billion budget estimate for the next 9 years includes about $1.43 billion for revitalization projects (including facilities planning and design), about $136.2 million for construction projects, and about $713.9 million for its maintenance program. This year, goals for the Smithsonian include improving the overall condition of Smithsonian buildings, with at least 35 percent of square footage of structures receiving a Facilities Condition Index (FCI) score of three or higher; increasing the average FCI to 2.3 for buildings with major revitalization funding; and reducing the $1.5-billion backlog of revitalization requirements. The Smithsonian Institution also runs nine research centers and is affiliated with 144 museums nationwide. It houses more than 136 million objects, artworks, and specimens, and boasts a roster of 2.1 million members.

Public Works and Government Services Canada
Hull, QC
(800) 622-6232
Public Works and Government Services Canada (PWGSC) powers the Canadian government, supporting the daily operations of nearly 106 federal departments and agencies in 380 buildings. PWGSC provides these departments and agencies with real property services, such as office accommodation, property management, and architectural and engineering services. It manages more than $7 billion in government real property holdings and manages about 2,100 lease contracts with annual rents totaling around $710 million annually. The portfolio includes 73.2 million square feet, of which 57 percent is owned and 43 percent is leased (there are 2,000 leases at a cost of about $800 million). The agency also provides professional and technical services to departments and agencies for the acquisition, development, construction, management, operation, maintenance, repair, and disposal of real property. PWGSC boasts a strong record of sustainable development achievement and expertise. Starting this year, all new government buildings will be designed and constructed to use less electricity and reduce greenhouse-gas emissions. A new Office of Greening Government Operations will provide government-wide leadership on issues such as green procurement, green property management, recycling and waste management, and remediation of contaminated sites. The agency's work in telecommunications and informatics encompasses $500 million in services and covers management of 250 major software applications, five large-scale computer data centers, and three Government of Canada check-production centers, handling 120 million mailings each year.

The U.S. Postal Service
Washington, D.C.
(800) 275-8777
The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) controls more than 34,000 leased or owned facilities in the United States. The agency also contracts with about 3,000 distribution locations. The size of USPS facilities ranges from as small as 50 square feet to as large as 35.3 acres under a single roof. The USPS has approximately 675 processing and distribution facilities, and more than 1,000 other types of facilities, including administrative, support, and vehicle-maintenance facilities. Of the USPS' 44 recent construction projects, 24 were for mail-processing equipment, eight were for facilities, and 12 were for other projects (such as retail equipment and information-infrastructure support). These projects total about $6.4 billion in approved capital. Future capital plans call for developing and implementing new automation equipment to increase operating efficiency. The facilities program will continue to address life, health, safety, and security issues. The USPS predicts annual average growth of approximately 2 million delivery points and notes that, to maintain quality operations and efficiency, it must maintain its infrastructure with high-priority replacement projects and ongoing repair and alteration projects. 

* Indicates statistics received from company, based on Buildings' Who's Who questionnaire. In cases where information was not supplied in response to Buildings' Who's Who questionnaire, information was derived from public information: 10K reports, company websites, industry-related reports, Hoover's Online, and other published and electronic materials.

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