GSA offers employees high-tech office space

Future office spaces for federal employees may one day rival the comforts of home, thanks to a new General Services Adminstration public-private partnership.

GSA teamed up with the Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) International last week to develop modern work stations that enhance productivity. The partnership will focus on technology's increased impact on real estate.

BOMA, the largest trade association representing the commercial real estate industry, and GSA have joined forces before, working together to address indoor air quality, building codes, telecommunications and Y2K preparedness.

"The success of our longstanding partnership is rooted in the commitment to workplace performance as the achievement standard. Both GSA and BOMA International recognize that technology plays an increasingly vital role in attracting and retaining tenants. Today's property managers must offer their tenants workplace solutions-not just space," said GSA Administrator David J. Barram.

Through a partnership with Carnegie-Mellon University, GSA created an experimental work space at its headquarters, which houses 47 individual work stations and includes features such as natural lighting, ergonomic furniture and keyboards, and movable work station panels to give employees privacy as needed. Employees can also control air temperature at their work stations, similar to the heating and air-conditioning controls in automobiles.

Moving from one work station to another is also easier. Portable outlet boxes and raised flooring allow employees to simply unplug telephones and computers in one space and replug them in another, eliminating complicated rewiring.

A spokeswoman for GSA said the agency took its cue from industry when it decided to create the more modern and wireless work environment.

"All these things were happening in the private sector and academia, and we thought it should also be happening in government," she said.

GSA's "Adaptable Workplace Lab" opened at the agency's Washington headquarters in October 1999 and is on the agency's top floor. GSA's Public Building Service employees work in the space. GSA hopes the lab will serve as an example for federal agencies and inspire them to create similar work stations.

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
Close [ x ] More from GovExec

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Sponsored by G Suite

    Cross-Agency Teamwork, Anytime and Anywhere

    Dan McCrae, director of IT service delivery division, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

  • Data-Centric Security vs. Database-Level Security

    Database-level encryption had its origins in the 1990s and early 2000s in response to very basic risks which largely revolved around the theft of servers, backup tapes and other physical-layer assets. As noted in Verizon’s 2014, Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR)1, threats today are far more advanced and dangerous.

  • Sponsored by One Identity

    One Nation Under Guard: Securing User Identities Across State and Local Government

    In 2016, the government can expect even more sophisticated threats on the horizon, making it all the more imperative that agencies enforce proper identity and access management (IAM) practices. In order to better measure the current state of IAM at the state and local level, Government Business Council (GBC) conducted an in-depth research study of state and local employees.

  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    The Next Federal Evolution of Cloud

    This GBC report explains the evolution of cloud computing in federal government, and provides an outlook for the future of the cloud in government IT.

  • Sponsored by LTC Partners, administrators of the Federal Long Term Care Insurance Program

    Approaching the Brink of Federal Retirement

    Approximately 10,000 baby boomers are reaching retirement age per day, and a growing number of federal employees are preparing themselves for the next chapter of their lives. Learn how to tackle the challenges that today's workforce faces in laying the groundwork for a smooth and secure retirement.

  • Sponsored by Hewlett Packard Enterprise

    Cyber Defense 101: Arming the Next Generation of Government Employees

    Read this issue brief to learn about the sector's most potent challenges in the new cyber landscape and how government organizations are building a robust, threat-aware infrastructure

  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    GBC Issue Brief: Cultivating Digital Services in the Federal Landscape

    Read this GBC issue brief to learn more about the current state of digital services in the government, and how key players are pushing enhancements towards a user-centric approach.


When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.