Photos released by the City of Oak Ridge and CNS Y-12 on Monday show the landslide that occurred next to the access road to the Oak Ridge Water Treatment Plant on Pine Ridge in February.
Last week, Oak Ridge Public Works Director Shira McWaters said it could cost an estimated $407,000 to repair the landslide, and the work should be complete by the end of July.
The water plant is on a ridge top above the main entrance to the Y-12 National Security Complex on Bear Creek Road. The landslide occurred next to the access road to the water plant on Saturday night, February 23. It’s the only access road to the water plant. It allows operations and maintenance workers to get to the water plant and deliver materials, equipment, and chemicals.
McWaters said the city has been able to maintain access to the water plant using the inside lane of the access road and closing the outside lane, the one closest to the slide.
The water plant provides water to both the City of Oak Ridge and to U.S. Department of Energy sites, including Y-12 and Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Concerns about slope instability near the ridge top water plant are one reason that city officials want to replace the 70-year-old facility. They plan to build a new plant near the city’s water intake at the Clinch River in south Oak Ridge.
February, when the landslide occurred, was rainy. Oak Ridge had more than 15 inches of rain that month, according to the National Weather Service in Morristown. That was a record, the NWS said. There were other landslides reported across East Tennessee that month, including on State Route 116 in north Anderson County.
McWaters has said the landslide required the Oak Ridge Public Works Department to rent special equipment to get to the landslide; remove wet, unstable soils; and place new rock to stabilize the area. The work has included the installation of geotechnical fabric and an under drain.
McWaters has said the city will seek partial reimbursement for part of the landslide costs from the Federal Emergency Management Agency and DOE.
More information will be added as it becomes available.
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