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4825 Glenbrook Road Weekly Update, Nov. 21

This week crews continued preparing the site for the next phase of high probability excavations. This work included training scenarios for the crew, as well as a smoke test in the Engineering Control Structure tent.  The smoke test demonstrated that the tent is under negative pressure and will hold any chemicals in the unlikely event of a release.  All preparations required to start high probability operations were completed. 

Additionally, we successfully tested the entire Shelter-in-Place system on Monday and today. These were follow-up tests from the November 12 test of just the ring-down system. We will return to our regular monthly tests on Wednesday, December 3 at 4:05 p.m., and the first Wednesday of every month throughout high probability operations.  Thank you for bearing with us for our Shelter-in-Place Siren tests this week. We have ensured that the system is working and ready for the crews to start high probability.

With this work complete, we are ready to begin high probability slightly ahead of schedule. We will begin high probability intrusive operations on Monday, November 24. We will continue to work on Tuesday, November 25, before securing the site for the rest of the Thanksgiving holiday week. We will then return to high probability work on Monday, December 1. High probability work will continue to occur from 8 am - 4 pm.

Finally, we looked at various options to re-design the fence along Glenbrook Road and are moving forward with purchasing a new fence, which will improve the property's appearance. The fence will be taller (10 feet instead of 6 feet) and semi-permanent. The screen will be a grey, non-translucent fabric to match the fence that is along the 4825/4835 Glenbrook Road property boundary. Tan colored fabric will be draped over the support equipment in the front yard area (including the personnel decontamination station, the redress tent, and medical monitoring shed) to match the color of the tent and minimize the visual impact at the street level. Additionally, the green fencing along the 4825/4801 Glenbrook Road property boundary will be wrapped neatly on both sides since it is now more visible. This new fence should be installed by the end of the year and/or early in the new year. 

Safety continues to be our number one priority at the site. Throughout every phase of the project, all necessary precautions are taken to ensure the safety of the site workers, the residents of the community, and those driving by.

To reach a Spring Valley Army Corps representative in the event of an after-hours emergency, please call the project's 24-hour hotline: 1-888-393-0059. During business hours, please continue to call the Spring Valley Community Outreach Team at 410-962-0157.

Click here to read the November 14 update.

Project Overview

The project site is a residential property located at 4825 Glenbrook Road N.W. within the Spring Valley Formerly Used Defense Site in Northwest Washington, D.C. During the World War I era, the property was part of a larger area known as the American University Experiment Station (AUES), where the U.S. government researched and tested chemical agents, equipment and munitions. AUES related waste, including more than 500 munition items, 400 pounds of laboratory glassware and 100 tons of contaminated soil, have been recovered and safely removed from the property during investigations from 2000-2002 and then again from 2007-2010. In August 2010, several agencies within the Department of Defense as well as the regulatory partners, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and District Department of the Environment, made the decision to separate the 4825 Glenbrook Road property from the Spring Valley neighborhood site to expedite the cleanup process.

After thorough reviews and a public comment period, the Corps of Engineers, with concurrence from the partners and American University (property owner), selected the alternative to remove the house, cleanup, and restore the property to residential standards, providing for unrestricted future use of the property. This approach is the most effective and protective of human health and the environment. 

Cleanup Implementation

Crews removed the house (Nov. 29 - 30, 2012) systematically from top to bottom using an excavator. After the demolition, crews began preparing the site for the high probability operations. Historical and field data indicate the high probability areas of the property have a greater likelihood of containing AUES debris and/or glassware items.

Site preparation included low probability test pitting in several areas in the backyard, utility relocation, general site preparations, and installation of the engineering controls needed to safely perform the high probability work. The engineering controls include an Engineering Control Structure (a 60’x80’x27’ tent) that fully encloses the high probability excavation areas,a chemical agent filtration system that will filter the air leaving the control structure, and a continuous air monitoring system. All of the materials removed during the high probability phase will be safely disposed.

Additionally, the Corps of Engineers has developed a Shelter-in-Place program as an added layer of protection to the public.  

High probability operations began Sept. 23, 2013 and will wrap-up in winter 2016/2017, depending on the types and amounts of debris encountered.  The goal is to completely remove any remaining AUES debris and restore the property to residential standards by summer 2017.

Learn more about the work through a video tour of the site:  http://youtu.be/yVws5UnBuZw.  You also can see the actual excavation work in this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rK0LzWtzum8



Information Repository

The Information Repository is located at the Tenley-Friendship Branch Library, 4450 Wisconsin Ave. N.W., Washington, D.C.

Hard copies and digital records of key project documents can be found upstairs in the Reference Section.  The document collection includes a variety of materials created since the start of the project, 20 years ago. Check with the reference librarian to direct you to our shelves of materials.

Also, on your next visit to the library, ask at the Reference Desk for the Spring Valley FUDS large binder, which has a table of contents and almost a hundred disks that contain years of digital records available for research and review. These disks must be checked out from the librarian and are only available for use on the library’s public computers during your visit.  If there is a piece of information you cannot locate in the library, please contact the Community Outreach Team at 410-962-0157.

Additional archived documents not found in the library or here on the Web site, can be found at http://springvalley.ertcorp.com.


Contact Information

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