In 1938 the site in Avenida Balboa was leased from the Government of Panama for 999 years. The chancery building was constructed under the supervision of the Foreign Buildings Office of the Department of State in 1941. The total cost of the land and construction was $366,719. The first diplomatic mission of the United States of America in the Republic of Panama was established in 1904, the year after Panama achieved independence from Colombia (November 3rd, 1903). The first American Minister was William L. Buchanan of Covington, Ohio. The American Legation was for many years located at the corner of Central Avenue and Fourth Street. It was raised to the status of Embassy in 1939 and moved to its current location on April 2, 1942.
The United States first established a consular office in Panama in 1833 when Panama was a department of Colombia. It became a Consulate General on September 3, 1884 and was combined with the Embassy on April 6, 1942. Earliest available records of the Consulate date from 1910 when the Consulate was located in the Diario de Panama Building near the Presidential Palace. It was then moved to the Marina Building across from the Presidential Palace. It subsequently moved to several other buildings in Panama City.
Since September 2008, the Embassy is located in its new building #783. Demetrio B. Lakas Avenue, Clayton. All offices, including the Consulate, are located in our new embassy compound. In March 2008, the Embassy became the second U.S. diplomatic enclave in the world to earn LEED certification.