DARPA Opens New Headquarters in Ballston

by Katie Pyzyk May 22, 2012 at 2:30 pm 13,070 31 Comments

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) invited community leaders to be among the dozens to attend a ceremony marking the opening of its new headquarters today.

DARPA headquarters, which used to be at 3701 N. Fairfax Drive in Virginia Square, is now in the recently finished building at 675 N. Randolph Street in Ballston. The new development is being touted as more secure and environmentally sound than the previous location.

Congressman Jim Moran (D) and several Arlington County Board members, including Chair Mary Hynes, attended the event. Moran and Hynes spoke of how local officials spent years working to keep the defense contractor in Arlington.

“DARPA is the center of the wonderful knowledge economy that’s become part of our identity,” said Hynes.

Moran, who held a cybersecurity summit last month, noted that one of DARPA’s accomplishments is attracting top workers who can help prevent threats to the United States, particularly cyber threats. He also cited work on stealth technology and prosthetic limbs. He said all of the defense agency’s work helps Arlington’s economy.

“DARPA represents an enormous economic boost,” Moran said. “We’re extraordinarily proud that we have DARPA as part of this community.”

The new 13-story facility is considered one of largest secure conference centers in Northern Virginia, and more than 1,100 people work there. It’s expected to receive a LEED platinum designation for commercial interiors from the U.S. Green Building Council.

  • drax

    75 new jobs!

  • Arlington, Northside

    I wants me a robot!

  • Rick

    Its been open for two weeks now…

    • Eponymous Coward

      Proof their stealth technology is working.

  • Cid

    The robot invasion is coming for me…

  • JohnB2

    So are they going to allow parking in front of the old building now? Will cops be sitting in front of the new building all day?

    • JohnB2

      And I’m surprised DARPA didn’t get BRACed to a base.

      • Only 2nd tier commands get sent to the boonies.

      • Josh

        There was talk about moving them to Belvoir. I guess it was too far for the Pentagon and Capital Hill people to go for their ego-inflating briefings.

    • Eyes Wide Shut

      It seems like they will need to move some of those secret orange traffic cones that magically can stop an explosion to the new facility given that they left a wide open path to drive a vehicle up to the front door.

      Maybe I can be hired as a consultant and point to the lack of bollards between the street and the parking guard hut. This is my ticket to riches as a consultant.

      • Keep Your Day Job

        Keep your day job because your chances at riches as a consultant have gone away. The crack-security has added magic orange barrels and magic yellow tape in lieu of having real security.

  • Really

    The Darpa initiative?

  • Andy

    The suicide guy is right across the street.

    • i know, right… if this is so safe of bldg, they’ll need to start watching more carefully who gets in that parking garage.

      i did say MORE carefully

  • Monty Burns

    Release the hounds.

  • John Fontain

    Being ‘green’ means building an entirely new building rather than staying in a pre-existing building?

  • lebele

    DARPA is not a Defense contractor. It is part of Dept of Defense.

    • WeiQiang

      *face palm*

    • note the machine gun kelly’s out front and the Earthen berms

      so, about a one mile radius should be considered by new home seekers…

      • b/c the trafic will be sick!

  • Freethinker

    DARPA is one of the bloated Defense Department Agencies that is worth every penny.

    Things it’s invented, among others:
    1. Internet
    2. WWW
    3. GPS
    4. ‘Google Maps’
    5. Siri

    Next time someone tells you govt is good for nothing and only gets in the way of innovation, mention a few of the above. We should be spending more money on R&D, and not just military R&D. We will fall behind as a country and the next generation of world changing inventions will come from elsewhere.


    • you forgot Facebook (joint project with N.S.A)

    • Al Gore

      Nonsense, I invented the internet!

      • Southeast Ben


    • Monty Burns

      They also developed the technology to record and screen every phone call in and out of the US for my amusement. Excellent.

  • Laffinoutloud

    This is a joke right? County Gov’t can’t get itself or anyone else to put solar panels on a building roof to heat hot water for the bathrooms.

    Internet inventions? Any company that’s any good is taking its employees off the internet.

    • Freethinker

      ‘Internet inventions? Any company that’s any good is taking its employees off the internet.’

      I’m not sure what you mean here. What internet inventions? DARPA invented the internet, I’m not sure what that has to do with employees of companies/agencies today being taken off the internet to enhance work production (questionable premise, btw).

  • very cool. i’ve been wondering what this building was for awhile now. *howls*

  • Arlington, Northside

    It is amazing how fast a building can go up, even a very secure complicated green one like this one, when you have massive government funds and a competent agency like DARPA in charge. It seems like it went up in just a few months!


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