Matthew B. Gilmore
[Link updated 4/2019]
Since this post from July 2015, there has been progress at the DC Archives.
Rebecca Katz was hired as the new Public Records Office administrator in September 2015. Katz has her J.D. from Harvard Law and M.S.L.S. from Catholic University and has worked as policy analyst and as Assistant General Counsel for the Council of the District of Columbia, prior to becoming PRO administrator. Here is a link to the website. You can see the OPR blog here: https://dcarchivesopr.wordpress.com/ The office also now has at Twitter account: @DCArchivesOPR
Some rules have been updated:
You may now use your electronics (cell phone, tablet, laptop) while doing research at the DC Archives, subject to the following restrictions:
An accession register is now online.
Progress on a new facility moves forward. Hartman-Cox and EYP, were chosen to develop requirements for the design of the new archival facility project.
Their extensive programming analysis was delivered in February 2016.
The Office of Public Records (OPR) is a division under the District of Columbia’s Office of the Secretary. OPR currently operates an Archives and Records Center facility at Naylor Court. This facility is supplemented by other city and Federal facilities to store public records. The Naylor Court facility has reached its storage capacity and its physical and mechanical deficiencies make it inadequate for the long-term preservation of the city’s archival records.
To achieve these goals, HC/EYP facilitated the programming process with DGS and OPR and:
Three potential locations were identified:
As a follow-up the DC Department of General Services (DGS) and Office of Public Records requested a study for feasibility of program accommodation at the proposed Penn Center site; this has been completed by Hartman-Cox and EYP but not released. Penn Center is in high demand, suggested as a homeless shelter and as swing space/storage for Martin Luther King Library renovation.
Extensive discussion took place of an alternative location, the current W Street Trash Transfer Station at 1220 W St. NE proposed by Councilmember Kenyan McDuffie and Council Chairman Phil Mendelson– $29 million was proposed by the Council in new capital funding towards a new DC Archives facility. The W Street site is included in the District of Columbia budget for FY 2017. Also in the budget is an increase of $234,739 and 2.0 FTEs (full time equivalent) personnel. One of the FTEs will support the transition of archived data to the Office of the Chief Technology Officer (OCTO).
*Former Public Records Officer Clarence Davis passed away June 15, 2016.
[Note: Mark Seagraves, NBC 4 reported on the Archives November 2015: http://www.nbcwashington.com/news/local/Condition-of-DC-Archives-Building-Poses-Threat-To-Historic-Treasures_Washington-DC-347260782.html
Sources: DC Budget; Hartman-Cox/EYP reports