The Pentagon is the headquarters of the United States Department of Defense (DoD). As a symbol of the U.S. military, the “Pentagon” is often used metonymically to refer to DoD rather than the building itself. It is the largest office building by floor area.
The Pentagon was conceived at the request of Brigadier General Brehon B. Sommervell, Chief of the Construction Division of the Office of the Quartermaster General, on a weekend in mid-July 1941. The purpose was to provide a temporary solution to the War Department’s critical shortage of space. Congress, cautious about the size of the expenditure and the enormity of the project, but anxious about events in Europe and the Far East that could require U.S. military intervention, appropriated the funds necessary to construct the War Department’s new home (approximately $83 million) on August 14, 1941. The groundbreaking ceremony took place on September 11, 1941.
The Pentagon houses approximately 24,000 military and civilian employees and approximately 3,000 non-defense support personnel.
Home to Department of Defense Headquarters, the Pentagon is one of the world's largest office buildings. It is located in Arlington, VA, right across the Potomac River from Washington, DC. The Pentagon is virtually a city in itself with over 23,000 employees, both military and civilian, assigned. It has 200 acres of lawn, 16 parking lots, 131 stairways and 19 escalators, a number of food and shopping vendors, dry cleaners and banking facilities. The building has approximately 17.5 miles of corridors.
The National Capital Region (NCR) is a high cost of living area. Many people choose to live further away in Virginia or Maryland and commute to work at the Pentagon. Pentagon Operator: 703-697-1201, DSN: 312-227-1201.
For more specific information on working at the Pentagon, visit https://www.whs.mil.