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D.C. Building Owner Files Lawsuit Over GSA Consolidation Plan

601 Indiana Ave. NW
The office building at 601 Indiana Ave. NW, where the GSA currently leases 37K SF

The federal government's plan to move three agencies into one space is facing a legal challenge from their current landlord. 

Zuckerman Graveley Management Inc. filed a lawsuit this month in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims arguing the General Services Administration's search for a 181K SF space to consolidate three agencies limits competition, the Washington Business Journal reports

The three agencies, the Court Services and Offender Services Agency, the Pre-Trial Service Agency and the Public Defender Service currently occupy Zuckerman Gravely-owned buildings at 601 and 633 Indiana Ave. NW. 

The GSA in September 2018 received congressional authorization to seek a single office to combine the agencies' personnel. It is part of the GSA's efforts to save taxpayer money by consolidating agencies and signing long-term leases. 

Zuckerman Graveley, through its attorneys at McGuireWoods LLP, argues the consolidation would force the agencies to relocate at least twice as far as they currently sit from the H. Carl Moultrie Courthouse, home of the D.C. Superior Court. Given the lack of large, vacant blocks of office space around Judiciary Square, the suit says the agencies would be forced to move at least as far as NoMa and operate a shuttle service to the courthouse. 

The landlord already filed a protest with the Government Accountability Office earlier this month prior to filing the lawsuit. The GAO found that the government had the right to seek a single building for the three agencies.