The National Park Service's study of Manhattan Project sites is now officially underway. With $125,000 budgeted for FY2006, the study is certainly off to a good start. The first series of public meetings are currently being held on March 22nd in Hanford. Oak Ridge's meetings are scheduled for April 11 (6 to 8 PM) and April 12 (11 AM to 1:00 PM) both in DOE's Information Center. The Los Alamos meetings will be on June 7 in Los Alamos and June 8 in Santa Fe. Dayton's schedule is to be determined.
The next year, through spring 2007, the NPS will be devoted to developing preliminary alternatives for NPS involvement, soliciting public input, and selecting a preferred alternative. A draft Special Resource Study/Environmental Evaluation will be prepared over the next year and distributed to the public in spring 2008. Finally, a revised Special Resource Study will be distributed to Congress and the public by spring 2009. The next step is for Congress to consider the recommendations and act on them.
There will be a link for the public to review documents and submit comments on the web at http://parkplanning.nps.gov.
The Atomic Heritage Foundation is working with the Oak Ridge Heritage and Preservation Association to offer a special program on June 16, 2006 as part of the City of Oak Ridge's Secret City Festival. The focus will be on the preservation of the former gaseous diffusion plant from the Manhattan Project, the K-25 plant. Historian Robert S. Norris will present "K-25: A Monumental Achievement" and others will present our current vision for the preservation of the North End of the K-25 plant and site.
We are also putting together a program on September 16, 2006 in Washington, DC. The program will feature some Manhattan Project veterans and public policy makers considering the 60th anniversary of the Atomic Energy Act. We are inviting the Department of Energy and National Park Service to update the public on the NPS study and efforts to preserve the Manhattan Project properties.