This is the latest in a series of communications about the activities of the Army Corps of Engineers on our campus. Over the past year, the Corps’ environmental investigation and cleanup activities on campus have focused on “Lot 18,” behind the Hamilton, Kreeger, Rockwood, Public Safety, and Financial Aid buildings. In coordination with the D.C. Department of Health and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the Corps is exploring Lot 18 to identify and remove any material related to the Army’s World War I testing of munitions and warfare agents in the Spring Valley area.
Since temporarily suspending operations on January 21 due to federal budget constraints, the Army Corps has been developing and revising work and safety plans to increase productivity and expedite the cleanup of Lot 18, while maintaining substantial safety protocols to protect the health and safety of the site workers and the community.
The Corps is expected to re-mobilize at Lot 18 in late April and resume their investigation and cleanup operations in June. The Lot 18 cleanup is scheduled to be completed by March 2006. When the Corps returns this month, they will install a larger tent structure to improve the efficiency of the intrusive investigation. The Corps will move equipment to the site, set up the new inflatable tent, connect electrical and utility feeds, install water tanks and generators, survey, and clear brush as needed.
The university is committed to helping the Army Corps finish their work on the AU campus and throughout Spring Valley safely and efficiently. Our top priority is the health and safety of the entire campus community. The University closely monitors the Corps’ progress, and our independent expert, Dr. Paul Chrostowski, will continue to review the Corps’ work and make appropriate recommendations. The Army Corps also receives environmental health and safety input from EPA, and D.C. Health. As a result, we are confident that the health and well-being of the campus community is being protected.
I will update the campus community as the Army Corps’ work continues. Please visit the website for previous updates provided to the campus community or call 202-885-2020 if you have specific questions about the Corps’ project at AU.