Procurement and Development of U.S. Postal Service Management Training and Conference Center

GGD-81-75: Published: May 6, 1981. Publicly Released: May 6, 1981.

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GAO was requested to review the Postal Service's development of a management training and conference center in Potomac, Maryland.

GAO found that the continued use of the old facilities in Bethesda, Maryland would have posed several problems including: (1) expansion possibilities were limited; (2) classrooms were poorly designed and located in two buildings; (3) facilities for physical fitness training and student activities were inadequate; (4) there was no meeting place for more than 50 people; (5) there was not enough convenient student housing; (6) rental costs were increasing; and (7) the environment was not conducive to effective management training. GAO believes that an organization as large as the Postal Service, with its multiple training requirements, could reasonably be expected to have better facilities than those being leased in Bethesda. Although the alternatives which the Service considered may have made selection of the Potomac site inevitable, this fact does not detract from the soundness of the decision to purchase the site. The purchase price of $6.8 million seems reasonable considering the cost of the new construction and the need for a training and conference center. The additional expenditures for renovations and new construction are critical to the success of the undertaking.

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