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(The statement-above referred to is as follows:) Total area (square feet)-
400, 956 Estimated cost of land (condemnation value).
$2,048, 000 Estimated square foot cost of land (per square foot)
$5. 10 Estimated improvement value (condemnation value).
$2, 191, 000 Total estimated cost of land and improvements (condemnation value). $4, 670, 000
LOCATION OF PROPOSED WAR DEPARTMENT BUILDINGS
Mr. SNYDER. Is it not the purpose to have the new buildings that are erected in that neighborhood conform with the architecture of other monumental buildings?
Mr. REYNOLDS. That is correct. I think, for a better understanding of this problem in general, it would be well to look at the sketches we have prepared for the northwest rectangle.
Mr. WIGGLESWORTH. What was the total cost of the new Interior Department Building which has just been completed?
Mr. REYNOLDS. Approximately $13,384,000.
Mr. REYNOLDS. Yes, including the land not owned by the Government at the time the project was authorized.
I have here a plot plan [indicating). This shows Constitution Avenue here indicating), and this is the new Interior Department Building (indicating). This is the new Federal Reserve Bank Building (indicating), and this is the Naval Hospital [indicating). New York Avenue, running at this angle (indicating) makes an intersection with C Street and Twenty-third Street. It is proposed to put the War Department Buildings in this area (indicating), east of the Naval Hospital, and it is proposed to put the Navy group west of the Naval Hospital.
Mr. TABER. What are they going to do with the present Naval Hospital grounds?
Mr. REYNOLDS. I do not know.
Mr. WOODRUM. Why not put the War Department buildings there and not tear down the apartment houses?
Mr. Taber. I understand the Naval Hospital people want to move somewhere else. What is going to be done about the gas tanks?
Mr. REYNOLDS. They are quite a distance away.
Mr. Taber. They are close enough so you can smell them. They are close enough to where you have laid out these buildings so that you can smell them good.
Mr. REYNOLDS. We have no jurisdiction over the location of buildings in the District. That duty is vested in the National Capital Park and Planning Commission. We have some jurisdiction over the appearance of the buildings, but the architectural design must be submitted to the Fine Arts Commission.
Mr. Ludlow. How much area is there in this Naval Hospital reservation?
Mr. REYNOLDS. I do not know.
Mr. LUDLOW. Why could not part of that area be used for this proposed building, and save the wrecking of the apartment houses it is proposed to tear down?
Mr. REYNOLDS. The trouble with the Naval Hospital site is that it is up on a hill, and the Fine Arts Commission and the National Capital Park and Planning Commission insist that these buildings do not havo
an elevation over a certain height, and that is controlled pretty largely by the height of the Lincoln Memorial.
Mr. TABER. That means they would want the hill stripped off?
Mr. REYNOLDS. It would be necessary to strip it off to obtain maximum floor area.
To give you some indication of the way this ground rises, we are required to put in one less story of height in the War Department Building than in the present Interior Department Building, so as to keep the cornice height the same.
We will have difficulty in developing the entire requirements of the War Department on that site, but we believe we can do it.
There is one corner in the proposed plot not developed, but the National Capital Park and Planning Commission prefer that we not develop it because when these buildings are erected, it is desired that the south facade be comparable to the south facade of the new Interior Department Building.
Mr. TABER. How many stories is it proposed that this building shall have?
Mr. REYNOLDS. There will be six stories.
Mr. WOODRUM. From a practical standpoint, or a realistic standpoint, the selection of this proposed site calls for the taking of three or four apartment houses that are now in use.
Mr. REYNOLDS. And one of the apartments is quite large.
Mr. WOODRUM. How many families is that going to put out on the mercy of the landlords who want to raise rents in Washington? Is not that a consideration that ought to enter into this picture?
Mr. Bacon. I thought some of those apartment houses are used as office buildings now.
Mr. REYNOLDS. The Potomac Park Apartment is. I believe, considering the problem of housing in the District as a whole, it would have practically no effect. The amount of apartment space in Washington is very large.
Mr. WOODRUM. On one hand the Government is going out toward the upper end of Sixteenth Street and loaning a lot of money which is being spent for building apartment houses so that people can get reasonable rents. On the other hand, we are proposing to go down in this section we have been talking about and tear down good apartment houses that are being used by people who are living in them. What is the justification for that?
Perhaps that is not a fair question to ask you. That is an observation rather than a question.
Mr. REYNOLDS. High rents in the District are occasioned by supply and demand, and some buildings have been built under financial conditions which require them to get enormous rents for purposes of liquidation.
Mr. TABER. Nothing was built at a higher cost than the current cost, was there?
Mr. REYNOLDS. I do not believe it is entirely a housing problem.
BUILDINGS, FLOOR SPACE, ETC., NOW OCCUPIED BY WAR DEPARTMENT
Mr. Taber. Mr. Reynolds, would you give us a list in the record of the buildings that are now occupied by the War Department, with the square footage of each, and the activity housed in each, and where the buildings are rented, and state the amount of rent that is paid?
Mr. REYNOLDS. Yes, sir; we will put that in the record. (The statement above referred to is as follows:)
A. Space occupied in permanent buildings which would be available for assign-
park development of the city. It is assumed that space in these buildings
and administrative offices; miscellaneous service divisions).
gineers; Telephone Division; National Board for Promotion Rifle
of the Adjutant General's office; portion of)
soon as vacated.
this building is of nonfireproof construction and will be demolished
within a year's time)..
records Adjutant General's office; Army War College; American
D. Space occupied in leased buildings:
12. Otis Building (810 18th St. NW.; Judge Advocate General's office)...
1, 201, 160
Mr. Taber. Will you also give us in the record an estimate of the square footage that could be surrendered by the elimination of files that might be placed in some sort of a file warehouse, or something of that character, in connection with this kind of a building?
Mr. REYNOLDS. It is estimated, as previously stated, that 250,000 square feet of file space would be subject to such transfer.
COMPARATIVE COSTS OF CONSTRUCTION OF OTHER PUBLIC BUILDINGS IN WASHINGTON
Mr. Ludlow. Will you also give us in the record a comparative statement of the cost of construction of other public buildings in Washington compared with the cost of this proposed building?
Mr. ŘEYNOLDS. Yes, sir. Of course, in order for that to be of value to you, you would have to give effect to the price conditions that existed at the time the other buildings were constructed.
Mr. Ludlow. I understand perfectly that we would have to evaluate all those factors that go into that, but I would like to have those complete figures in reference to those buildings.
Mr. REYNOLDS. Yes, sir.
Comparison of Triangle buildings, Washington, D. C., May 22, 1937
Jan. 15, 1929
100.6 73. 4
Internal Revenue, original..
sion-Labor, connecting wing -
15, 670, 100 663, 880 $8,057, 417.92 $0.5142
73. 73. 4 73.4 73. 4 73. 7 96.4 93. 8 106. 1
1 Summary of War Department building estimate in accordance with above:
Total (7744 cents per cubic joot).....
500,000 16,000,000 2,910, 000
Mr. REYNOLDS. There has been a great deal of criticism about the cost of buildings in the District of Columbia, and while I have had nothing to do with their construction except in the last 3 or 4 years, it is well to recall that the buildings in the Triangle group over which there has been so much criticism cost from 52 to 65 cents per cubic foot, as compared with a cost in commercial practice of from 60 cents to $1.05 in New York City.
Mr. Bacon. The new courthouse building cost $1.70, I think.
Mr. Ludlow. On the basis of this estimate, this departmental building would cost more than any other public building in the city of Washington, except the United States Capitol, would it not?
Mr. REYNOLDS. That is right.
Mr. Ludlow. Can you give us briefly an idea of the reason for that? Is it on account of the area?
Mr. REYNOLDS. The building is large, of course.
Mr. SNYDER. Would that building be as large as the new post-office building?
Mr. REYNOLDS. Yes; very much larger.
Mr. Ludlow. And down here you are getting into an area of supposedly less land value compared with the land value in the area where it is proposed to locate this building.
Mr. REYNOLDS. This building will probably have less elaboration than any building in the triangle, and even including the new Department of the Interior Building which has just been erected.
We learned many things in the construction of that building which would help us save money in this one. We have a splendid architectural and engineering organization, the largest in America, trained to construct buildings commercially well.
Mr. Ludlow. What did that building cost?
Mr. Ludlow. How does it compare in size with the size of this proposed War Department Building?
Mr. REYNOLDS. It is about 30 percent less.
Mr. Ludlow. In addition to the cost of these other buildings, will you also give us the square footage?
Mr. REYNOLDS. Yes, we will give you the square footage and the cost of each. I presume you are referring to the net square feet; that is, the used square feet.
Mr. Ludlow. I would like to have it on a comparative basis; give us a comparative statement.
Mr. REYNOLDS. I would like to make this observation in connection with the work in the District of Columbia and the country generally, from a public-buildings standpoint.
There is a demand that has been a continuing demand for quite some time for space in the District of Columbia, and it will continue to exist.
It is my personal belief that the Munitions Building and the other buildings on the Mall should eventually be removed. It is my further belief that the regular establishments and departments of the Government, such as the War Department and the Navy Department, should be housed in their own buildings, and not in temporary buildings and rented quarters. To what extent that may be carried in connection with other permanent agencies of the Government is a question for further decision, of course.
It is true that the General Accounting Office, even if it is changed to a General Auditing Office, will require a great deal of space, and there is no provision adequately to meet that space demand in the District today.
The General Accounting Office is working under extremely adverse conditions, and that matter was presented before the committee last year, as I recall.
Outside of the District we have somewhat the same problem.
The Procurement Division represents all departments, except the War and Navy Departments, in matters relating to public-building construction.
We have to present to this committee the housing demands of every department and agency of the Government, and we are responsible for properly reporting that to this committee. They make their reports to us.
We spend a good deal of time listening to complaints and arguments as to where buildings should be built.
Take such an agency, for instance, as the Public Health Service. They require marine hospitals and quarantine stations. Also the Coast Guard is scattered along our entire coast line, the major building construction being handled by Procurement Division. We even provide housing on the border for the customs patrol, small stations costing $15,000 to $20,000. The above does not include such projects as mints, appraisers' stores, immigration stations, office buildings, and so forth.