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4825 Glenbrook Road Weekly Update, April 22

High probability operations continued under the third and final tent this week. Crews have begun the final soil excavation effort that includes sifting, sampling and scraping the surface area soil until competent saprolite is reached.

Seven roll-offs of soil were removed this week.  No glass debris was recovered. In addition, there have been no detections of chemical agents or industrial compounds in the air monitors, nor any soil contamination documented under the Tent 3 location to date. Also, the team has begun working on the final grade plan for the site, to be implemented when the final low probability operations are complete.

Next week, crews will continue to excavate the remaining soil with shovels, then package the soil and prepare it for shipment off site.  Next month, an Army Corps geologist will assess whether we have reached competent saprolite, or bedrock at this tent location. We anticipate completing high probability operations by the end of June. Later in the fall, our low probability operations will resume.

As a reminder, the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry report entitled "Health Consultation Report - An Exposure and Health Effects Evaluation of Former Workers and Residents to Chemical Contamination at 4825 Glenbrook Road, Washington, D.C." was released for public review earlier this month. For your convenience, we have posted a link on our website to the ATSDR website and their documentation (Here is the direct link: http://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/sites/springvalley/).  Representatives from ATSDR will be making a presentation on the report and answering questions at the next Restoration Advisory Board (RAB) meeting on May 10th, which begins at 7 p.m. Please note that the May RAB meeting location has been changed to the ‘Vestry’ meeting room at Metropolitan Memorial United Methodist Church, 3401 Nebraska Ave NW, Washington, D.C.

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 walking and driving by.


Photo 1 - Sifting, sampling and scraping the surface soil prior to loading in into a roll-off

Photo 2 - The final soil scraping effort can be seen in the back left, near the wood lagging 

For an archive of these weekly updates, click here

New: ATSDR Announcement

Dear Spring Valley Stakeholders, RAB members and local elected officials,

We want to let you know that the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) released their "Health Consultation Report - An Exposure and Health Effects Evaluation of Former Workers and Residents to Chemical Contamination at 4825 Glenbrook Road, Washington, D.C."  on April 19.

In 2010, the Corps of Engineers asked ATSDR, a part of the US Department of Health and Human Service's Center for Disease Control (CDC), to develop the report, which evaluated past exposure scenarios at the 4825 Glenbrook Road property, specifically for two groups: construction and other workers who developed the property (1992-1993), and the family who lived at the residence from 1993 until 1999.

ATSDR is holding a public comment period to gather feedback from the public regarding their evaluation, starting today and closing on June 20, 2016. Experts from ATSDR are currently scheduled to attend the regularly scheduled Spring Valley Restoration Advisory Board meeting, on Tuesday, May 10, 2016 at 7 PM, to discuss the report and receive feedback from the public.

For more information from ATSDR regarding the report, including a summary of their findings and access to the full report online, you can visit ATSDR's site at http://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/sites/springvalley/  (or http://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/sites/springvalley/atsdr_documents.html).

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.

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Contact Information

Baltimore District Corporate Communication
410-962-2809
cenab-cc@usace.army.mil