Army Corps of Engineers, Project Updates | Archive

July 31, 2002

 TO:  Campus Community
 FROM:  Jorge Abud, Assistant Vice President of Facilities
 SUBJECT:  Army Corps’ Activities Near SIS and Hurst Buildings

As part of their work to make the campus safe, the Army Corps of Engineers will excavate two small areas along Nebraska Avenue near the School of International Service and Hurst buildings. The dates for the scheduled work are Saturday, August 3 and Sunday August 4 for one site, and Saturday, August 10 and Sunday, August 11 for the second site. Similar to the work currently being done on the intramural fields, the Corps will mark an area 20 feet by 20 feet, and will remove and replace approximately two to three feet of soil.

These two sites were identified for soil removal, based on the comprehensive soil testing the Army Corps did in January and March of 2001 and which was reported to campus at that time. The arsenic in the soil is at levels of less than 30 parts per million (ppm). Because the soil arsenic is not at surface level and is buried a few feet into the ground, it is unlikely that anyone walking near these areas would have been exposed, according to Dr. Paul Chrostowski, the University’s environmental health consultant.

The area will be fenced and look like a construction site, as on previous occasions when the Corps has removed soil on campus. Part of the small parking lot adjacent to the SIS building will be used as a staging ground. As it has during other excavation activities, the Corps will take precautions, such as wetting the soil, to reduce the likelihood of dust and will use air monitors to check air quality.

The Army Corps is continuing its work on the intramural fields and adjacent to the Child Development Center, and is scheduled to complete that area in late Fall 2002.

If you have questions regarding the Army Corps of Engineers project at AU, please call the information line at (202) 885-2020. You may review information about the project on the web site at