Last load of K-25 building demolition shipped from site

Last load of K-25 building demolition shipped from site

Posted:
Workers at K-25 building in Oak Ridge haul final load of demolition from a building constructed more than 70 years ago during the Manhattan Project. Workers at K-25 building in Oak Ridge haul final load of demolition from a building constructed more than 70 years ago during the Manhattan Project.

OAK RIDGE (WATE) - The final truckload of debris from the K-25 Building was shipped from the East Tennessee Technology Park Tuesday.

The mile-long building was constructed in 1943 as part of the Manhattan Project. The final demolition ended in December, 2013. Since then, workers have been transporting the debris from the site.

Officials say the demolition process took longer than expected because of a radioactive isotope known as Technetium-99 that contaminated the final section of the building. To simplify the process, workers painted the contaminated parts a color of blue to be shipped separate from other segments.

"As this phase of the project is completed, it's a good time to remember the many people who were responsible for constructing, operating, and demolishing this historically significant facility," said Mark Whitney, manager of the Oak Ridge Office of Environmental Management. "The people who built K-25 under intense schedules, the operators who helped our nation succeed through World War II and the Cold War, and the cleanup crews that were able to safely demolish and transport waste from the Department's largest-ever demolition project despite challenges."

Since the building's closure in 1964, demolition has been top of the list for the environmental clean-up program in Oak Ridge.

The K-25 Building demolition project began in 2008 by Bechtel Jacobs Company LLC in the west wing. URS|CH2M Oak Ridge LLC (UCOR) then took over the project in 2011 and finished the demolition process of the east and north wings.

Total waste counts from the clean-up project are as follow: 6,000 compressors, 3,000 converters, 187,000 cubic yards of steel, 3,800 miles of electrical conductors, and 1.2 million cubic feet of asbestos insulation.  All in all, more than 460,000 cubic yards of K-25 waste have been shipped for disposal.

"While this final load of waste was just one in thousands of shipments that have been made, it represents so much more," said Leo Sain, UCOR President and Project Manager. "A great deal of planning and careful execution has allowed us to finish this project safely and ahead of schedule, bringing a successful end to the largest demolition project DOE has ever undertaken."

The Department plans to find ways to honor and interpret the historical significance of the sight, in compliance with the National Historic Preservation Act of 2012. DOE's Oak Ridge Office of Environmental Management will construct an equipment building that replicates the gaseous diffusion technology.

 

Powered by WorldNow

1306 N. Broadway NE Knoxville,
Tennessee 37917

Telephone: 865.637.NEWS(6397)
Fax: 865.525.4091
Email: newsroom@wate.com

Can’t find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Young Broadcasting of Knoxville, Inc. A Media General Company.