Source: Marketwatch.com | Press Release | April 30, 2015
AECOM, the world’s #1-ranked engineering design firm, announced today that an AECOM-led joint venture with CH2M Hill, commonly known as UCOR, has been authorized by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to perform optional work within the existing contract to continue cleanup of Tennessee’s Oak Ridge Reservation.
The options exercised are valued at $104 million, against the current $2.5-billion value of UCOR’s performance-based contract. Since beginning work in August 2011, UCOR’s mission has been to remove environmental hazards and millions of square feet of legacy facilities from the former Oak Ridge Gaseous Diffusion Plant, now called East Tennessee Technology Park, and repurpose the land and buildings for use by new job-creating, commercial ventures. The joint venture is also responsible for cleanup work at other DOE Oak Ridge Reservation sites, surveillance and maintenance of select reservation facilities slated for demolition, and disposal of wastes.
“We are grateful for DOE’s confidence in our performance and in our UCOR employees, as expressed through this exercised work scope,” said James Taylor, executive vice president and general manager of AECOM’s nuclear and environment business unit. “We will continue our momentum in completing cleanup of the East Tennessee Technology Park and move forward with other critical initiatives designed to support cleanup and preserve the history of this site.”
According to Taylor, UCOR’s impressive safety record during its tenure played a role in the DOE’s decision to exercise the options, pointing out that employees and subcontractors have worked more than three million safe hours.
The scope calls for UCOR to continue cleanup of the East Tennessee Technology Park while performing ongoing environmental-management missions, such as facility surveillance and maintenance and various waste management operations at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the Y-12 Nuclear Security Complex. During this phase, UCOR will support the construction of commemorative facilities as part of the National Historic Preservation Project.
The Oak Ridge Gaseous Diffusion Plant – originally known as the K-25 Site – began operations during World War II as part of the Manhattan Project. The wartime mission was to produce enriched uranium for use in atomic weapons. The plant also produced uranium for the commercial nuclear power industry from 1945 until 1985.
UCOR is a joint venture between URS, which is now part of AECOM, and CH2M Hill. UCOR is responsible for cleanup of the East Tennessee Technology Park (formerly the Oak Ridge Gaseous Diffusion Plant) as well as other sites on the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge Reservation.