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NASA Goddard's New Building Nears Completion
The new Logistics Facility, called Building 35, at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md. is nearing completion. Aerial photograph of the new Logistics Facility building under construction. Credit: NASA

The new Logistics Facility, called Building 35, at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md. is nearing completion much to the excitement of the employees currently working in the aging Building 16W. Marilyn Tolliver, Chief of Information and Logistics Management is especially excited about the new facility.

"We have spent countless hours working with a limited budget to design the layout of the interior space," stated Tolliver. "The new Logistics Facility is more streamlined and efficient and will certainly improve our customer service as well as our employee morale."

Under construction since September 2010, Building 35 will be completed in two stages. In Phase I, the one-story portion will be completed and occupied before the end of 2012. It will contain a large open space for shipping and central receiving operations and the Mail Service Center. The warehouse portion, Phase II, will be completed in fiscal year 2013.

Tolliver and Dave Maxwell, Deputy Manager for TRAX International remember it being a 'dark and stormy' day when they first surveyed the former Goddard Rifle Range that would become the site of the new facility. The site was perfect since it met the strict security requirements implemented since "9-11" and commercial deliveries can be made safely without endangering center employees or structures.

The Logistics Building first appeared on Goddard's Facility Master Plan in 2000 and the plans were refined numerous times to meet budget limitations. Unlike the majority of Goddard buildings, the new 100,000 square foot metal structure is "pre-engineered," based on specifications and foundation drawings provided to a metal building supplier that responded with their specific components to meet the requirement. This type of construction is more cost-effective however it does not allow for as much customization as standard construction.

Keene Hall, Project Manager representing Goddard's Facilities Management Division. › View larger
Project Manager Keene Hall stands beside the loading dock of Building 35. Credit: NASA
Keene Hall is the Project Manager representing Goddard's Facilities Management Division (FMD) as well as the Contracting Officer's Technical Representative and he is co-located in a trailer at the construction site.

"Being located at the site fosters constant exchange of information allowing us to pinpoint issues as they arise and move out quickly to resolve them," Hall remarked. "It is rewarding to finally see the structure and the systems that will run this facility come together."

Although the two-story warehouse portion will be enclosed in the first stage of construction, it will not be fully utilized until 2013. This cavernous area has 20-plus-foot ceilings with three 15 foot by 20 foot rolling doors that will allow oversized shipments such as spacecraft or ground equipment to move easily from outside the loading dock, completely through the interior and out the opposite side of the building. Large reusable shipping containers can also be stored inside the facility, a service not available anywhere else at Goddard.

"The relocation of the Logistics Facility will open up multiple opportunities for future development of the Goddard campus and the implementation of the Facilities Master Plan," stated Dave Larsen, Deputy Branch Head, Engineering Branch of FMD. "As the Center grows and expands its missions, we are building an environment that will ensure its success."

According to Maxwell, the lower warehouse area will become the new location for the disposal and redistribution of excess furniture, materials and parts. An integrated Supply, Space Flight Project Parts and ESD certified Microelectronics Assembly Laboratory suite will be included in the upper warehouse as part of the Phase II build out. The Microelectronics Lab will continue producing printed circuit boards for NASA flight projects and other mission needs. The current logistics facility has been in constant use since 1964 and it is slated to be demolished sometime in 2014.

Upcoming Facilities Projects

The next exciting project under way is the new Flight Projects building, Building 36, which will house most of the Code 400 Flight Projects Directorate. Although work on the building was targeted for award by the end of 2012, the recent bids for construction were higher than the government estimate. The Facilities Management Division will work on tweaking the design and open the bidding process again sometime in the near future. Building 36 will also house the Proposal Development Office and it will be built in the area east of Building 23 below Building 16/16W.

Building 2 was demolished in the spring of 2012 as part of the center's Facilities Master Plan. The site has been identified as a "partnering and outreach zone," which means that it is a flexible building site, and if funded in the future, it could house mission partners such as other federal agencies, universities, scientist-engineering communities and support services contractors.

Cynthia O'Carroll
NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md.