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FBI Headquarters To Move To Greenbelt, Maryland

After more than a decade of fraught deliberations, the federal government has decided to move the headquarters of the FBI to a new development in Prince George's County, Maryland, a suburb northeast of Washington, D.C.

The FBI's current headquarters, the J. Edgar Hoover Building on Pennsylvania Avenue.

The bureau will build a new headquarters on an undeveloped 61-acre site near the Greenbelt Metro station, The Washington Post first reported, citing unnamed sources.

The General Services Administration confirmed the decision in a statement to Bisnow Wednesday evening.

“GSA looks forward to building the FBI a state-of-the-art headquarters campus in Greenbelt to advance their critical mission for years to come,” GSA Administrator Robin Carnahan said in an emailed statement. “Thank you to everyone at GSA, DOJ, FBI, Congress, and others who helped reach this important milestone after a comprehensive, multi-year effort.” 

A GSA spokesperson added that it made the decision based on several factors: minimizing cost to taxpayers, transportation access for employees and visitors, certainty of project schedule, and advancing sustainability and equity. 

The land is owned by the state and the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, which operates Metro.

The decision comes more than a decade after the federal government first floated the idea of the law enforcement agency leaving its longtime headquarters at the crumbling J. Edgar Hoover Building on Pennsylvania Avenue in downtown D.C. 

The Greenbelt site was one of three finalists selected during the Obama administration, alongside Lerner Enterprises-owned land in Landover, Maryland, and federally owned land in Springfield, Virginia.

The search process was halted during the Trump administration, a move that drew criticism as a potential conflict of interest — the Hoover Building is blocks from where The Trump Organization operated a luxury hotel during former President Donald Trump's time in the White House.

The process was restarted under the Biden administration, with the previous site candidates brought back to the forefront. But the process of making a final decision has been a source of animosity between Maryland and Virginia politicians.

The GSA, which handles real estate decisions for the federal government, changed the criteria for its selection three months ago, giving more weight to cost and equity and de-emphasizing proximity to other FBI facilities and transportation access.

The criteria appeared to have favored the Maryland locations, which didn’t have the advantage of being near the FBI Academy in Quantico.

This is a developing story.