ISLAMABAD: US ambassador to Pakistan Richard G. Olson has officially inaugurated the new building of the US Embassy here at a ceremony in the diplomatic enclave on Wednesday, it was announced on Friday.
The Ambassador was joined by numerous Pakistani government officials and foreign diplomats to commemorate the occasion.
Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, Daniel F. Feldman, and the State Department Director for Overseas Building Operations, Casey Jones, also traveled from Washington to take part in the ceremony, a US embassy statement said.
“As we dedicate our new United States Embassy in Pakistan, let us also re-dedicate ourselves to promoting peace and continued mutual understanding between our two countries. This building represents a venue where Pakistanis and Americans can continue to come together to build a better future for both our countries," said Olson.
The state-of-the-art facilities began construction in 2011 and were built, utilizing the expertise and skill of numerous Pakistani trades people and crews. More than $85 million had been invested in the Pakistani economy through purchases of steel, cement, gravel, stone, sand and tile for the completion of the project.
The new Embassy building incorporates numerous features, designed to protect the environment, including an array of solar panels, energy efficient lighting, and architectural sunshades to reduce heat in the building.
An on-site waste water treatment plant allows water to be recycled for irrigating landscaping throughout the campus and local Pakistani plants were used throughout the grounds to discourage erosion and maintain the original topography.
US Embassy Islamabad is also one of the first US embassies in the world, designed to be fully compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
ADA, which celebrates its 25th anniversary this year, is one of America's most comprehensive pieces of civil rights legislation, which prohibits discrimination and guarantees that people with disabilities have equal opportunities, including employment and the ability to participate and access all government programmes and services, it said.