Sites in Prince George's County, Maryland, and Fairfax County, Virginia, are being considered for the FBI's new headquarters, News4's I-Team has learned.
A portion of the Greenbelt Metro station site and the former Landover Mall, both in Prince George's County, and the GSA Franconia Warehouse Complex in Fairfax County made the agency's short list.
The FBI is currently located at 935 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, but the agency has outgrown the 40-year-old Hoover Building.
"The FBI occupies the building on Pennsylvania Avenue and they also occupy 20 other leases around the city," U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) Project Executive Bill Dowd told News4 last year. "What we want to do is provide a facility that will consolidate all of the headquarters and make them more efficient."
“They need a modern, secured facility,” said U.S. Sen. Ben Cardin (D-Md.). “That’s a campus facility, and quite frankly, the only location that supplies what the FBI needs is located in Prince George’s County, Maryland.”
The agency has said their new headquarters needs about 50 acres and must sit within two-and-a-half miles of the Beltway and two miles of a Metro station -- criteria all three sites meet.
For several years, officials in Maryland, Virginia and D.C. have rallied to be considered for the agency's new home.
A study commissioned by the state of Maryland found more FBI employees -- 43 percent -- live in the state than any other jurisdiction. And while officials prefer the Greenbelt site, the Lerner company wants the FBI to move onto its long abandoned Landover Mall site, located near FedEx Field.
“For too long, Prince George’s County has been redlined, sidelined, overlooked and undervalued,” said U.S. Sen. Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.).
“We’re going to do everything at the county and state levels – we got a commitment from the governor – to make these sites as competitive as possible,” Prince George’s County Executive Rushern Baker said.
U.S. Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) said he's happy the commonwealth can put all of its effort into one site in Springfield. He touted access to Metro and VRE and recent transportation projects in northern Virginia.
“Think about how many FBI employees have to go, right now, from downtown out to Quantico on a daily basis,” Warner said. “If you can cut that commuting time in more than half by being already most of the way there in Springfield, that both helps the FBI employees and taxpayers.”
The new FBI headquarters is estimated to be a $2 billion economic development project and home to 11,000 jobs.
The GSA will conduct National Environmental Policy Act reviews on each of the sites, including a period for public comment. During this time, the GSA will also seek qualified developers and development proposals.
D.C. Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton said Tuesday afternoon that there had been "prior indications" that the District's proposed site would not be selected for the new FBI headquarters.
"Nevertheless, we take considerable comfort in knowing that at last the current FBI headquarters site is now ripe to bring new jobs and revenue to the District of Columbia," she said in a statement, noting that the Hoover Building site will be redeveloped.