OAK RIDGE, Tenn. – An area cleaned up by the Oak Ridge Office of Environmental Management (OREM) years ago is becoming a new base of operations for hundreds of workers who will conduct large-scale cleanup at the Y-12 National Security Complex.
The Old Salvage Yard was established in the 1970s for storing scrap metal. In 2012, OREM finished a project that removed 21 million pounds of old scrap metal and opened the 7-acre area for reuse. Years later, it turned out that OREM and contractor UCOR would be the ones to reuse it.
UCOR had staged its operations for a massive demolition project at the footprint of the former Biology Complex. That station provided crews close proximity to the former Biology Complex. That project has since been completed, and the footprint is needed as the site of the National Nuclear Security Administration’s (NNSA) new Lithium Processing Facility.
The transition to a new, centralized location for OREM helps ensure other critical deactivation and demolition work can continue seamlessly at Y-12. It enhances logistics and efficiency by providing space near some of the largest upcoming demolition projects at Y-12. It also features infrastructure to support employees and field work, such as workspaces for daily briefings, superintendent offices and shower trailers.
“Developing this base of operations is a significant step that helps aid and enable our cleanup efforts at Y-12 for years to come,” said Brian Henry, OREM’s Y-12 portfolio federal project director.
UCOR began designing the infrastructure for the new location last fall and began construction earlier this year.
The project required close collaboration with NNSA and its management and operating contractor for Y-12, Consolidated Nuclear Security. It included a variety of moving parts from agreements to transfer the site to adding utilities and relocating trailers for offices and worker support.
“I am extremely grateful for our project team of engineers, planners, field support and our construction subcontractor who have worked tirelessly to establish our new base of operations,” said UCOR Project Manager Harrison Boyd.
The new base of operations is scheduled for completion later this summer.
Meanwhile, crews at Y-12 continue to prepare three large former uranium enrichment facilities for demolition — Alpha-2, Alpha-4 and Beta-1. The new workspace will be crucial to those ongoing efforts.