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SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

You know, we're broadcasting this morning under the fourth - and surely, the finest - roof that has ever sheltered National Public Radio. Ignoring the adage "always be out of town when they move," NPR special correspondent Susan Stamberg has worked in all four locations since NPR went on the air, in 1971. She soon became a host of a show called ALL THINGS CONSIDERED, and made NPR and broadcast history.

The founder, Ms. Stamberg, has these moving observations.

SUSAN STAMBERG, BYLINE: Our very first, temporary offices were at 1625 I Street, in Northwest Washington, just down the block from the Christian Science Church. No furniture at first, so we sat on the floor; went down to the carry-out, in the back of the garage, for steak-and-cheese sandwiches smothered in onions. And we sounded, on our brand-new and only daily program, awful.

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STAMBERG: From National Public Radio in Washington, I'm Susan Stamberg with ALL THINGS CONSIDERED.

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STAMBERG: We were broadcasting over really low-fidelity telephone lines. But we knew in 1973 - when some 70 of us packed up our typewriters and carbon paper, and moved to the new building at 2025 M Street - that everything would be better.

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STAMBERG: Oh! We are playing with a new toy on ALL THINGS CONSIDERED tonight. It cost over $18 million. It has parts all around the country, even in outer space.

We had just gone from landlines to satellite, which made us sound much better. The years at 2025 M Street brought more and more toys - and new programs. This one, WEEKEND EDITION SUNDAY, TALK OF THE NATION, and before them...

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UNIDENTIFIED MAN: This is NPR's MORNING EDITION.

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STAMBERG: More staff, more member stations, more listeners. Eventually, after 21 years, we outgrew the space. By then there were 400 of us and the M Street carpets were worn down from frantic races to the control room with reels of analog tape. Digital recording came later when, after packing more boxes, cigarette lighters, Peabody Awards, we moved to another new building, 635 Massachusetts Avenue, where everything got better.

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(THEME MUSIC)

STAMBERG: This is WEEKEND EDITION, I'm Susan Stamberg.

Sitting in for Scott on that moving day, February 19, 1994, we broadcast from the studios of the Voice of America because studios in the new building weren't ready. Always ready, wherever there was a microphone - Daniel Schorr, reviewing the week's news.

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DANIEL SCHORR, BYLINE: Trade has become the only real international ideology that this administration has, now that the Cold War is over.

STAMBERG: And now, we've done it again; from 635 Mass. to 1111 North Capitol Street. This move - 800 people, audio flash cards, hard drives, the Web - involved logistics you would not believe: cartons, crates, memos, countdown calendars. Big deal. And the payoff? It's Oz here - shiny and bright, and full of sunlight and free coffee. Once we figure it all out - find the studios, our offices, the restrooms - everything will be better in the new building. Although that voice in the elevators...

(Recording) First floor, going up. Second floor, Technology. Going up. Fourth floor, Newsroom. Going down.

I agreed to record that if they would also let me say, "Fifth floor, Lingerie, but that department has been closed due to sequestration." The rest of the place is open for business, however, as we step into a brand-new adventure.

I'm Susan Stamberg, NPR News.

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SIMON: What, they closed the lingerie department? You're listening to WEEKEND EDITION, from NPR News.

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