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ORF Home > About ORF > Who We Are

Who We Are

Who We Are (Quienes Somos) is also available in Spanish

The NIH Office of Research Facilities supports the NIH mission by providing, maintaining, and operating safe, healthy, and attractive facilities. ORF operates as a "Central Service" and reports directly to the Office of Management (OM), located within the Office of the Director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The Office of Management is responsible for NIH-wide administration and management.

ORF services are supported through a set of charge-backs to the NIH Institutes or Centers (ICs) using four mechanisms:

  • A census-based Management Fund assessment
  • Rent
  • Membership fees
  • Fee-for-service direct charges

ORF also manages the NIH Building and Facilities Appropriation, which is used to pay the cost of design, development, construction, repair, and improvement of capital facilities and related infrastructure.

ORF Conducts NIH Master and Space Planning

  • Providing regular updates of the Bethesda/Poolesville campus Master Plan
  • Producing Environmental Impact Statement on impact of Plan
  • Preparing campus Master Plans for other NIH owned sites
  • Developing space plans and assignments
  • Developing transportation plans
  • Planning site coordination

ORF Manages NIH Capital Construction

Construction was completed on over 2.25 million gross square feet of research and patient case space. Signature projects include:

  • Mark O. Hatfield Clinical Research Center
  • C.W. Bill Young Center (Building 33)
  • Porter National Neuroscience Research Center
  • Gateway Visitor Center
  • Edmond J. Safra Family Lodge
  • Commercial Vehicle Inspection Facility
  • NIH Fire Station
  • Bio-medical Research Center in Baltimore, MD
  • High-containment centers in Montana and Frederick, MD
  • Northwest Child Care
  • Building 10  E-wing and F-wing Renovation Programs
  • Managed construction, consolidation and fit-out in 5 major leased facilities in Montgomery County
  • ​Center for Cellular Engineering Modular Processing
  • NCI TIL Modular Cell Processing Facility
  • National Institute on Aging (NIA), Alzheimer’s Disease & Related Dementias (ADRD)
  • Pharmacy IVAU
  • Large and Small Warehouses
  • Central Utility Plant (CUP) Improvements​

ORF Renovates NIH Space

  • In 229 government-owned buildings in 6 locations
  • In 80 leased buildings in 3 locations nationwide
  • Renovations range from $50 to $150M each
  • $5.8M in renovations at Rocky Mountain Labs
  • $12M in renovations in North Carolina
  • $120M in renovations in in Montgomery County

ORF Operates and Maintains Buildings

  • Serving more than 24,000 employee, contractor, and visitor customers in the Bethesda campus daily
  • Providing infrastructure for employees; patients; animals; research and high-containment labs
  • Servicing thousands of heating and cooling coils
  • Maintaining and operating mechanical and electrical systems
  • Servicing all elevators and millions of locks and lamps
  • Maintaining 100% of campus emergency generators
  • Monitoring and maintaining thousands of miles of pipe inside buildings
  • Monitoring the second largest Building Automation System point concentration in the country

ORF Builds and Services Utilities

  • 15.5 miles of pipe for air, steam, and sanitation
  • 32.5 miles of water piping
  • 26.9 miles of electrical cable
  • NIH Cogeneration plant

ORF Maintains the NIH Environment and Recycles NIH Waste

  • 24 miles of sidewalks and 466 handicap ramps
  • 9 miles of fencing
  • 49 acres of roads, sidewalks, and parking lots
  • 233 acres of lawn; 180 acres of pasture; 215 acres of forest
  • Nearly 5 acres of ponds
  • 705 shrub bed areas comprising 20 acres in Bethesda
  • 7,347 trees (152 species) in Bethesda
  • 67 bird houses (47 species) in Bethesda; 25 blue bird houses in Poolesville
  • No herbicide applications since 1985
  • Recipient of White Oak Award for Urban Forest Conservation Plan
  • Recycling more than 100,000 pounds of chemical waste a year
  • Processing and treating another 435,000 pounds of chemical waste
  • Recycling 1,000 tons of medical waste a year
  • Recycling 14.7 tons of solid waste a year

ORF Provides Acquisition Services for NIH Construction

The Office of Acquisition, ORF ensures the overall quality and integrity of real property acquisition services for construction, real estate, and other facilities operations and maintenance contract support services

This page was last updated on Oct 06, 2022