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Federal Eye
Posted at 05:30 PM ET, 09/07/2011

Moran asks for meeting on Mark Center concerns

Rep. James P. Moran has requested a meeting with the Department of Defense to discuss concerns that the new Mark Center in Alexandria is vulnerable to a terrorist attack.

The Dept. of Defense Office Complex at Mark Center can be seen still under construction in June 2010. (Michael S. Williamson)
As our colleague Tom Jackman wrote Wednesday in his State of NoVa blog, a Department of Defense report has found the facility could be highly vulnerable to a truck bomb, according to Time Magazine, which obtained a copy of the report and described the findings in an article Tuesday by Mark Benjamin.

“The Congressman has been very concerned about many aspects of this whole Mark Center debacle, the security situation being another example of how poor planning and a lack of coordination with all the stakeholders has resulted in a less than optimal situation for those working and living at and near the site,” Anne Hughes, a spokeswoman for Moran, said Wednesday.

Critics of the Mark Center have warned in the past that the site lacked adequate setback from surrounding roads. “It’s not like some of us did not point this out, numerous times,” said Rep. Gerald E. Connolly, (D-Va.). “I don’t know how anybody can be surprised.”

The first of 6,400 federal employees began moving into the site at Seminary Road and I-395 last month as part of the Pentagon’s Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) changes.

“The traffic impact of moving 6,400 people to a Metro-inaccessible site represents the most immediate threat to our community, but these security concerns are legitimate and must be addressed by DOD,” Hughes added.

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