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Major milestone reached in creation of new uranium processing facility | News

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Major milestone reached in creation of new uranium processing facility

Officials broke ground in Oak Ridge Friday on a multi-billion dollar facility that will eventually house the nationa's nuclear stockpile.

The Uranium Processing Facility (UPF) will provide a new place for repairs and maintenance on the county's nuclear weapons. The current facility, the aging 9212 building on the Y-12 complex, is seventy years old and needs to be replaced.

The $6.5 million dollar UPF could take up to ten years to complete, but the the prep work for the project is now complete.

"UPF is essential to our Nation's uranium mission," said John Eschenberg, UPF Federal Project Director. "Site readiness work sets the standard for UPF and opens the door for other site infrastructure projects to begin. We've accomplished a lot of work in an area that stretches across approximately a five-mile linear footprint. Most importantly, we have accomplished all of these activities securely, on schedule, under budget and with high quality."

Work on the site started in late spring of 2013. Since then, crews have relocated Bear Creek Road, constructed a new bridge, relocated utilities, and built an access road for construction.

"As we move forward in a six-phase project so that by 2025 we have a state-of the-art uranium procesing facility that continues to make America's nuclear security a priority and the greatest in the world," said Rep. Chuck Fleischmann (R) Tennessee.

"UPF will be the core of our nation's nuclear security operations for many decades," added Eschenberg. "Delivering this facility is crucial for our community and for our country. Site readiness is the first step in completing the project, and we will continue to build on this success for future stages of the project."

Officials said this will be the largest construction project in the state since World War II.


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