—GSA is committed to assuring that federal facilities are fully accessible to all Americans. The design of public buildings must meet accessibility standards and practices outlined in the Architectural Barriers Act (ABA). The ABA was enacted by Congress in 1968 and applies to all federal government owned and leased buildings. GSA's current implementing standard under the ABA is the Architectural Barriers Act Accessibility Standard (ABAAS).
—The GSA Design Awards Program is held every two years to honor "the best of the best" of the federal projects designed and constructed by GSA.
—GSA manages architects and engineers to provide design for federal clients needing new workspace. In order to achieve top-quality design talent, GSA has instituted the Design Excellence Program, which includes a streamlined two-step architect/engineer selection process and the use of private sector peers to provide feedback to the architect/engineer of record.
—The Federal Government has embarked on the largest courthouse building program in 50 years, spurred by increasing space needs identified by the Federal Judiciary. To manage this challenging program, GSA created the Center for Courthouse Management to improve the management, oversight and delivery of all construction projects for new courthouses.
—GSA is responsible for all aspects of fire prevention and fire protection in GSA-owned and leased buildings.
—Provides technical support to GSA business lines, project planners, and field operations to cost effectively maintain, upgrade, and reuse historic properties in a manner that achieves federal stewardship goals.
—GSA is America's only source solely dedicated to procuring goods and services for government. As an integral part of GSA, the Federal Acquisition Service (FAS) possesses unrivaled capability to deliver comprehensive products and services across government at the best value possible.
—Assists GSA Regional Offices and the Federal Inspection Services agencies with the management of the border station construction program, including strategic planning, budgeting, benchmarking, and design guidance.
—GSA conducts research and works to incorporate the latest technologies to improve the security of the federal workplace.
—GSA, in cooperation with private standard-setting organizations, code bodies, and professional associations, manages the development of national policies and standards for seismic and structural safety in federal buildings.
—It is GSA's intent that sustainable design will be integrated as seamlessly as possible into the existing design and construction process. The following GSA documents now include sustainable design guidance: The Design Excellence Policies and Procedures and PBS-P100 Facilities Standards for the Public Buildings Service.
—GSA actively seeks to leverage its federal real estate actions in ways that bolster community efforts to encourage smart growth, economic vitality, and cultural vibrancy. GSA offers communities and agencies a one-stop-shop and identifies opportunities tied to federal projects where GSA and communities can work together to make the most of the investment.
—PBS applies value engineering to new construction and major modernization projects. Value engineering practices are formally structured in the design phase and depend on contractor initiative in the construction phase. Applications are described in detail in the .
GSA and LEED®
GSA will be utilizing the as a goal in design criteria to help apply principles of sustainable design and development to our facilities projects. LEED® is a consensus-based, market-driven rating system that can serve both as criteria and as measurement for GSA building projects. Beginning in FY 2003 all new GSA building projects must meet criteria for basic LEED® certification. LEED® consists of a set of prerequisites and credits with specific requirements for obtaining points in order to become a LEED® Green Building.