“As they battle sprawl, Washington area leaders say they face a stubborn foe, and it’s not greedy developers or the tyranny of the automobile or the desire for big houses. It is the United States government.

In scattering employees to the region’s outer edges, local officials and planners say, the federal government has undermined efforts to concentrate growth near public transit and the area’s urban core — the strategy local officials see as key to reducing traffic and conserving resources in a booming region.”

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