D.C. Council wants FBI to keep its headquarters in District

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DC,Eleanor Holmes Norton,D.C. Council,Vincent Gray,April Burbank

Two D.C. lawmakers want to make sure that the District is not forgotten in the tug-of-war over the location of the new FBI headquarters.

Councilmen Jack Evans and Vincent Orange introduced a resolution Tuesday that says the District could offer the FBI plenty of locations better than those offered by Maryland and Virginia lawmakers.

"Virginia and Maryland seem to be making a big deal about this. We want to make sure that [the federal government] is aware that we want to make a big deal about it as well," Evans said.

The resolution endorses any efforts by Mayor Vincent Gray and Rep. Eleanor Holmes Norton to keep the FBI in the District.

The J. Edgar Hoover Building on Pennsylvania Avenue has been home to the FBI since 1974, but size and maintenance issues have sent the FBI searching for a new location. Fairfax County and Prince George's County have been put forward as two likely options.

Requirements for the new FBI site: It must be 40-55 acres, within two miles of a Metro station and 2.5 miles of the Capital Beltway.

The D.C. Council proposal names the former Walter Reed Army Medical Center in upper Northwest as a possible location for the FBI, along with the former Coast Guard headquarters at Buzzard's Point or St. Elizabeths campus east of the Anacostia River.

The proposal contends that having the FBI in the District makes it more accessible for tourists and for the bureau's more than 10,000 headquarter employees -- and it claims that Maryland and Virginia lack the transportation infrastructure to handle those employees' commutes.

The federal government's General Services Administration has said that it would prefer to acquire the new FBI site through a property swap instead of paying for it in cash.

And if the FBI does leave the District? Evans revisited one of his earlier ideas, though it was not included in the proposal: If the FBI has to move away, he would like the Redskins to move back into the city.

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