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Bibb Helps Celebrate Brooklyn Courthouse Reopening

As prepared for delivery.

Remarks By
David L. Bibb
Acting Administrator
U.S. General Services Administration
U.S. Post Office and Courthouse Reopening
Brooklyn, N.Y.
4/24/06

Thank you very much, Judge (Melanie) Cyganowski.

Good morning ladies and gentlemen.

It’s my honor and pleasure to represent the Bush Administration – and the U.S. General Services Administration – as we gather in downtown Brooklyn today to celebrate the reopening of a local landmark with national significance --- the historic U.S. Post Office and Courthouse.

“Celebrate” is an over-used word, but I think it applies here because we have – through the commitment, cooperation and persistence of many talented individuals and organizations - achieved three very worthy goals.

First, we’ve created a modern and secure workplace for several important GSA clients: the U.S. Bankruptcy Court, the Postal Service, the U.S. Attorney’s Office and the U.S. Trustee.

Second, we’ve ensured that this familiar structure – older even than the storied Brooklyn Bridge - will be around for future generations to utilize and enjoy.

And third, by returning the building to active use, we’ve hopefully triggered positive economic ripples that will benefit not only the immediate neighborhood, but the surrounding communities as well.

Such an undertaking is difficult. It takes vision to form the plans, talent to turn vision into reality, and hard work to see the job through to completion. Let me take this opportunity to acknowledge:

  • The design firm of R.M. Kliment & Frances Halsband Architects, of New York City;
  • The construction firm of Bovis Lend Lease acting as agents for Fireman’s Fund Insurance Company; and the construction management firm – the URS Corporation;
  • And of course I’d like to salute GSA Regional Director Eileen Long-Chelales and her entire team, which was led by Project Manager Linda Peters.

Please make sure to take a good look around while you’re here today. From this magnificent three-story atrium to the historic stairway from the 1892 building – restored and painted to match its original colors – I believe this project is firm evidence of GSA’s commitment to historic preservation, downtown revitalization, and to making sure our client agencies are properly housed and equipped to perform their mission of service for the American people.

GSA is also responsible for providing future maintenance and upkeep for this facility. My pledge is that we will do so in a manner that will make us all proud.

Last, we’re also here today to express our heartfelt gratitude to those who will serve our citizens within the walls of this building in years to come.

It’s wonderful to know that this facility will provide the space and amenities these public servants need to continue the rich tradition of service that dates back 114 years, when Brooklyn’s Post Office and Courthouse first opened for business.

Again, on behalf of GSA, on behalf of President Bush and on behalf of the American people, congratulations, and best wishes for continued success in the future.

Thank you very much.