NOAA AND OPUS BREAK GROUND FOR NOAA CENTER FOR WEATHER AND CLIMATE PREDICTION
March 13, 2006 — The U.S. General Services Administration, in partnership with NOAA and Opus East, L.L.C., broke ground today for the NOAA Center for Weather and Climate Prediction, the crown jewel in a new 50-acre section of the University of Maryland's M-Square Research and Technology Park. Opus East, L.L.C., of Rockville, Md., working with Hellmuth, Obata + Kassabaum, Inc. (HOK) as the lead design and interior architect, will design, construct and own the building and lease it to the GSA. Opus arranged a long-term ground lease with the University of Maryland for the development. The 268,762 square-foot office and research complex will become the new home for NOAA’s Satellite and Information Service, Air Resources Laboratory and the National Centers for Environmental Prediction, an office of the National Weather Service. Approximately 800 people will work in the facility. (Click NOAA image for larger view of artist’s rendering of NOAA Center for Weather and Climate Prediction. Click here for high resolution version. Please credit “NOAA.”)
Ann Everett, acting administrator for GSA's National Capital Region said, "By locating this facility adjacent to the University of Maryland, GSA enhances NOAA's ability to develop closer collaboration between its scientists and forecasters, and the faculty and students at the University of Maryland. This benefits NOAA, the University and the American people."
all the meteorological data collected globally will arrive at NOAA's
Center for Weather and Climate Prediction. Environmental scientists
will analyze this information and generate a wide variety of atmospheric
and oceanic forecasts and guidance products using sophisticated numerical
weather and climate prediction models. "Our vision is clear: To
create a new state-of-the-art facility for NOAA employees that enhances
our ability to understand and meet global atmospheric challenges of
today. Our goal is to create synergy with the research and academic
community that will accelerate new science and technology into operations,
improve forecast performance and result in better service to the American
public," said retired Navy Vice Admiral Conrad
C. Lautenbacher, Jr., Ph.D., undersecretary of commerce for oceans
and atmosphere and NOAA administrator. (Click NOAA image for
larger view of NOAA Administrator Conrad C. Lautenbacher joining assembled
dignitaries at the ground breaking of the NOAA Center for Weather and
Climate Prediction. Click
here for high resolution version. Please credit “NOAA.”)
"I'm so proud of NOAA and the Weather Service—they work every day to save lives and livelihoods," said Senator Barbara A. Mikulski. "I know that NOAA's employees—the researchers, scientists, weather forecasters and satellite experts—are world class, cream of the crop. They deserve a world class work environment."
"This is a significant milestone towards completion of the new NOAA Center for Weather and Climate Prediction, which will be a state-of-the-art advanced weather operations and research facility," said Congressman Steny H. Hoyer. "This critical project will not only vastly improve our nation's weather systems and be much better suited to meet NOAA's needs, but it will also ensure that our region remains an attractive destination and home for the best and brightest minds."
is honored to work with GSA and NOAA to design and build this world-class
facility that will anchor Maryland's research and technology core,"
said James J. Lee, president and CEO of Opus East, L.L.C. "The
new facility will benefit our nation by enhancing the ability of NOAA
employees to monitor critical oceanic and environmental activities."
agency of the U.S. Department of
Commerce, is dedicated to enhancing economic security and national
safety through the prediction and research of weather and climate-related
events and providing environmental stewardship of the nation's coastal
and marine resources.
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