Federal real estate downsizing & consolidation efforts

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Government Matters takes a look at the General Services Administration’s efforts to shrink federal office space, and how they have affected multiple federal agencies.


The General Services Administration is looking to downsize. Along with the Office of Management and Budget, the agency has directed federal offices to “reduce the footprint.” The Government Accountability Office looked at how these guidelines affected federal agencies, and whether the space-saving initiatives were successful. GAO reports that 17 of 24 agencies shrunk their real estate footprint in the 2016 fiscal year. Four agencies, GSA and the departments of Defense, Education and Energy successfully downsized by more than three times their initial targets. In addition, 15 agencies promoted the use of telework to reduce office space. By 2016, 91 percent of GSA employees regularly telecommuted. While office relocations and consolidations will be the biggest source of reductions, for now agencies are trying to make the most efficient use of space in their current homes.