Companies contributing $500K to Main Street Oak Ridge wanted to help

Ray Evans

Ray Evans

Note: This story was last updated at 7 p.m.

The six companies contributing $500,000 for public infrastructure at Main Street Oak Ridge approached the city and volunteered to help, a consultant said Friday.

The companies are Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge Associated Universities, UCOR, Restoration Services Inc., Methodist Medical Center, and Consolidated Nuclear Security, which manages and operates Y-12 National Security Complex.

The companies understand how important the project is to the city and to them, said Ray Evans, retail consultant for the City of Oak Ridge.

“They approached us and said, ‘How can we help?'” Evans said. “They just want to ensure the success of this project.” [Read more…]

Six employers pledge $500,000 for Main Street Oak Ridge infrastructure

Warren Gooch

Warren Gooch

Six Oak Ridge employers have pledged $500,000 to support public infrastructure at Main Street Oak Ridge, the $80 million redevelopment of the former Oak Ridge Mall.

Officials said it shows unprecedented community support for the project.

The six employers are Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge Associated Universities, UCOR, Restoration Services Inc., Methodist Medical Center, and Consolidated Nuclear Security, which manages and operates Y-12 National Security Complex.

“All Oak Ridgers realize the successful development of the Main Street town center project is of critical importance not only to the citizens of the City of Oak Ridge and the business community but to the region in general,” Oak Ridge Mayor Warren Gooch said. “We appreciate these great corporate citizens stepping up the plate to help make Main Street Oak Ridge a reality.”

Tim Sittema

Tim Sittema

Project executives said critical final decisions are being made on the ramp-up to the project.

The relocation and reconstruction of public infrastructure such as Wilson Street and the two Main Streets are key elements of the project and the Oak Ridge City Council and the Industrial Development Board have pledged $1.5 million toward these improvements. According to the city’s consultants, costs will exceed this amount, so the corporate pledges are a welcomed addition to the development’s financial backing, a press release said.

[Read more…]

Main Street Oak Ridge developers doing pre-demolition, reviewing bids

Main Street Oak Ridge Site Plan April 16, 2015

The company redeveloping the former Oak Ridge Mall as Main Street Oak Ridge is working on pre-demolition activities and reviewing bids for the project.

A site plan for the proposed $80 million, 60-acre redevelopment was submitted to Oak Ridge Community Development on Monday. Here is more information about what is under way: [Read more…]


K-31 Demolition: 200 acres now available for development at ETTP

K-31 Demolition

The last section of the K-31 Building at East Tennessee Technology Park was demolished on Friday, June 26. It’s the fourth of five buildings to be demolished where gaseous diffusion was once used to enrich uranium. (Photo by Lynn Freeny/DOE) 


Demolition now complete on four of five gaseous diffusion buildings

Demolition of the large K-31 Building in west Oak Ridge means that 200 acres of flat land are now available for industrial development at East Tennessee Technology Park, officials said.

“It’s the largest parcel of land available at ETTP,” said Sue Cange, manager of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge Office of Environmental Management.

Infrastructure is already in place, including water, sewer, roads, and electricity, Cange said. Also, ETTP is close to Interstate 40, a short rail line, and possibly an airport. (There are plans to build an airport at the site, which is also known as Heritage Center.)

K-31 is the fourth of five gaseous diffusion buildings demolished at ETTP. The site, which has also been known as K-25 and Oak Ridge Gaseous Diffusion Plant, was built during the Manhattan Project in World War II as part of a top-secret federal program to build the world’s first atomic bombs. Officials say it helped to win the Cold War, enriching uranium for commercial nuclear power plants and nuclear weapons.

But operations ended in 1985, and the site was permanently shut down in 1987. DOE then began cleanup operations and—with the help of contractors, a nonprofit organization, and others–is converting it into a large private industrial park. [Read more…]

Site plan submitted for Main Street Oak Ridge

Main Street Oak Ridge James Downs

James Downs, Crosland Southeast partner, gave an update on the Main Street Oak Ridge project, the redevelopment of the former Oak Ridge Mall, during a March work session. (File photo)


Note: This story was last updated at 9 a.m. July 2.

A site plan was submitted on Monday for Main Street Oak Ridge, an official said. Main Street Oak Ridge is the eagerly anticipated $80 million project to redevelop the former Oak Ridge Mall.

The site plan is under review by the Oak Ridge city staff and could be discussed during an Oak Ridge Municipal Planning Commission work session on July 9 and during a regular meeting on July 16.

A site plan is an engineered construction drawing that includes the layout of buildings and parking, utility plans, traffic and pedestrian circulation, and stormwater management, said Kathryn Baldwin, Oak Ridge Community Development director. There would still be building plans for the construction of each building at the 60-acre site. [Read more…]

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DOE names IIa as woman-owned small business of year

Bonnie C. Carroll, IIa founder and CEO, center, receives the DOE Woman-owned Small Business Award for Fiscal Year 2014 from John Hale III, director of the Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization for DOE. (Photo courtesy IIa)

Bonnie C. Carroll, IIa founder and CEO, center, receives the DOE Woman-owned Small Business Award for Fiscal Year 2014 from John Hale III, director of the Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization for DOE. (Photo courtesy IIa)


The U.S. Department of Energy has named Information International Associates, or IIa, its Woman-owned Small Business for Fiscal Year 2014.

Bonnie C. Carroll, IIa founder and chief executive officer, accepted the award at the 14th Annual DOE Small Business Forum and Expo in Phoenix, Arizona, on June 17, 2015, from John Hale III, director of the DOE Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization.

Each year, DOE recognizes the exceptional performance of a woman-owned small business directly contributing to the accomplishments of core DOE mission objectives and requirements, a press release said. In presenting the award, Hale cited IIa’s innovation and technical solutions, which exceeded contract requirements in responding to cyber security concerns, as well as its exceptional customer service and efficiency, the release said.

DOE, the largest civilian contracting agency within the federal government, awarded a total of $6.6 billion in contracts in FY 2014 to prime and subcontracts. [Read more…]

Ribbon-cuttings: Curves, Minuteman Press

Minuteman Press Ribbon-cutting with Oak Ridge Chamber

The Oak Ridge Chamber of Commerce hosted a ribbon cutting for Minuteman Press on Friday, June 26. Minuteman Press is located at 110 Bus Terminal Road. (Photo by Oak Ridge Chamber of Commerce)


The Oak Ridge Chamber of Commerce had ribbon-cutting ceremonies last week for Minuteman Press and Curves of Oak Ridge. The Anderson County Chamber of Commerce joined the celebration at Minuteman Press on Friday, June 26.

Minuteman Press is located at 110 Bus Terminal Road, where American Reprographics used to be. David Fleming is the franchise owner in Oak Ridge. For more information, visit [Read more…]

Appeals court rules in favor of Covenant Health, other defendants in excessive radiation lawsuit

Methodist Medical Center Main Entrance

A three-judge appeals court panel has ruled in favor of Covenant Health and two other defendants in five lawsuits that alleged that the absence of shielding in part of the emergency department at Methodist Medical Center exposed five X-ray and radiologic technologists, including two who were pregnant, to excessive radiation.

The unanimous opinions by the three Tennessee Court of Appeals judges—D. Michael Swiney, John W. McClarty, and Thomas R. Frierson II—were filed June 9 in Knoxville. They affirmed an order by Anderson County Circuit Court Judge Donald R. Elledge granting a summary judgement in favor of the defendants: Covenant Health, Rentenbach Engineering Company, and TEG Architects LLC.

The lawsuits were filed in January 2014 by Connie Raby, Keith Gillis, Michael Phillips, Mary Ridenour on behalf of her and her child, and Micah Noelle Lewellen on behalf of her and her child.

The lawsuits alleged that the technologists were exposed to excess radiation for several years at Methodist Medical Center because some walls in and around a radiology imaging center in the new emergency department, which opened in February 2006 as part of a hospital remodel, were built without the required lead shielding, elevating the workers’ risk of health problems, including cancer. [Read more…]

RSI awards eight scholarships to local students

RSI Scholarships 2015

Scholarship recipients and RSI managers pictured left to right are Staci Ferguson, RSI vice president; Abby Colvais; Peter Caswell, RSI vice president; Sierra Sims; Lonnie Goss; Dmitry Petrov; Morgan Cleveland; Jackson Lloyd; and Paul Clay, RSI President. Not pictured are Christian Ironside and Tyler Moore. (Submitted photo)


Restoration Services Inc. and its voluntary Employee Outreach Committee have offered eight $1,000 college scholarships to “help students achieve their greatest potential through higher education,” a press release said.

Six scholarships were awarded to graduating high school students who will be attending college in the upcoming fall 2015 semester. The remaining two scholarships were awarded to children of RSI employees who are upcoming sophomores, juniors, or seniors currently enrolled in an accredited college for the 2015 fall semester. Scholarship recipients were selected from submitted applications that included academic accomplishments, community involvement and leadership roles, and an essay on current environmental threats.

The scholarship recipients entering college are: [Read more…]

ORNL invites companies to connect with lab at ‘Explore ORNL’ 

Oak Ridge National Laboratory will open its doors July 14-15 for its “Explore ORNL” conference designed to introduce the region’s business community to the lab’s world-class research and development facilities and expertise, a press release said.

“Explore ORNL is an outreach event that provides companies both large and small with a unique opportunity to learn about collaboration possibilities,” said Tom Rogers, ORNL’s director of Industrial Partnerships and Economic Development.

Representatives from companies such as Boeing, Cummins, Local Motors, Ten-Tec, Dresser-Rand, and Eagle Bend Manufacturing will speak about their experiences in working with ORNL experts to overcome technical challenges and develop new products. [Read more…]

Photos: Lavender Festival on Saturday

Lavender Festival in Oak Ridge 2015

The Lavender Festival celebrates “all things herbal” in Jackson Square from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, June 20, 2015. (Photo by Julio Culiat)


The Lavender Festival celebrates “all things herbal” in Jackson Square until 3 p.m. today (Saturday, June 20).

It’s the 17th annual festival, and there is no cost to attend. Here are photos by Julio Culiat.

The Lavender Festival focuses on herbs, health, gardening, and cooking, and it features more than 100 vendors, a dozen herb and health presentations, children’s activities, and many musicians. Vendors line the covered walkways of Jackson Square, the parking lot, and both sides of Broadway Avenue, which is closed to traffic.

See this previous story for more information.

[Read more…]