Media Note
Office of the Spokesperson
Washington, DC
February 26, 2012


In an important symbol of our enduring friendship with the Kingdom of Morocco, one of the United State’s oldest diplomatic partners, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton broke ground on the New Embassy Compound (NEC) in Rabat today. Morocco Foreign Minister, Saad Eddine Othmani; Mayor of Rabat, Fathallah Oualalou; as well as Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs Jeffrey D. Feltman; and U.S. Ambassador to Morocco, Samuel L. Kaplan attended the groundbreaking ceremony.

Situated on an 8.5-acre site, the multi-building complex will include a chancery, compound access controls, and Marine security guard quarters. When completed, the new complex will provide approximately 300 embassy employees with a state-of-the-art workspace.

The new facility will incorporate numerous sustainable features, including lights that automatically dim to take advantage of daylight, reduced water use plumbing fixtures, rain gardens, and indigenous and adapted plant species for reduced irrigation demand. The facility’s design targets Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) Silver Certification by the Green Building Certification Institute.

The $187 million project was designed by Page Southerland Page of Arlington, Virginia and will be constructed by B.L. Harbert International of Birmingham, Alabama. The NEC is scheduled to be completed in February 2015.

Since 1999, as part of the Department’s Capital Security Construction Program, OBO has completed 88 new diplomatic facilities and has moved more than 27,000 people into safe, secure, and functional facilities. OBO has an additional 41 projects in design or construction, including the NEC in Rabat.

OBO’s mission is to provide safe, secure, and functional facilities for the conduct of U.S. diplomacy and the promotion of U.S. interests worldwide. These facilities should represent American values and the best in American architecture, engineering, technology, sustainability, art, culture, and construction execution. For further information, please contact Christine T. Foushee at FousheeCT@State.gov or (703) 875-4131, or visit www.state.gov/obo.



PRN: 2012/287