Navy to rename building where Navy Yard shooting occurred

The Navy plans to rename the building at the Washington Navy Yard where a gunman killed 12 people last September.

The Navy will change the name of Building 197 at the Navy Yard to the Joshua Humphreys building, named after the man who designed the U.S. Navy’s first six frigates, Vice Adm. William Hilarides, head of Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA), wrote in a letter to employees Wednesday.

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He wrote that Humphreys was chosen because of his lasting impact, noting that one of his ships, Old Ironsides, is still floating and in service.

“Like Humphreys' frigates, NAVSEA is resilient and still afloat in spite of the events of 16 Sept.,” Hilarides said, referencing the date of last year’s shooting. “The name will be a testament to the incredible talent and skill of the entire NAVSEA workforce.”

Hilarides said that the building where the shooting occurred, which is the NAVSEA headquarters, is scheduled to re-open in February 2015.

“I feel this is a critical step towards establishing a new sense of place as we return to the Navy Yard next year,” he said.

The Navy Yard was also exploring renumbering the building, though that had not yet been finalized, Hilarides said.

The renovated building will have new entrances, redesigned and enclosed atriums, a remodeled cafeteria and a remembrance area.

CH2M HILL Constructors, Inc., a contractor based in Englewood, Colo., was awarded a $44 million contract last week to restore and renovate the building.