The City of Oak Ridge hosted visitors from across the country as part of the recent Energy Communities Alliance Peer Exchange focused on the continued implementation of the Manhattan Project National Historical Park, a press release said.
The meeting, held on August 14 and 15 in Oak Ridge, had an excellent turnout with many guests from the additional national park host communities of Los Alamos, New Mexico, and the cities near Hanford, Washington, making the trip to Oak Ridge, the press release said. Other attendees traveled from Aiken, South Carolina, to learn more about Oak Ridge and the national park, the release said.
Local officials, including Oak Ridge Mayor Warren Gooch, Roane County Executive Ron Woody, Oak Ridge City Council member Chuck Hope, and City Manager Mark Watson welcomed the invitees. National Park Service officials and representatives from tourism bureaus, historical societies, and economic development councils also took part. Oak Ridge Mayor Pro Tem Rick Chinn and City Council members Ellen Smith, Kelly Callison, Jim Dodson, and Derrick Hammond attended sessions as well.
Discussion during the two-day event highlighted the Manhattan Project National Historical Park’s assets across all three sites and ways in which each community is working to market and grow the park.
The Manhattan Project National Historical Park includes Oak Ridge, Hanford, and Los Alamos. They were three of the primary sites involved in the Manhattan Project, a top-secret federal program to build the world’s first atomic weapons during World War II.
At the ECA meeting, representatives from Oak Ridge and Roane County shared information on new recreational opportunities and national park signage as well as updates on projects like the Oak Ridge Fire Department’s History Center at the Dr. Thomas Howard Scott Manhattan Project Fire House, the memorabilia wall at the Scarboro Community Center, the newly remodeled K-25 Overlook Visitors’ Center, and the Friendship Bell Peace Pavilion project, which recently won a Sister Cities International Award for innovation.
Attendees also learned about the Urban Dynamics Institute at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, a division dedicated to observing, measuring, analyzing, and modeling urban dynamics at the city and global scale, the press release said.
The ECA is a nonprofit, membership organization of local governments adjacent to or affected by U.S. Department of Energ activities. ECA’s goals include bringing local government officials together to share information, establish policy positions, and promote community interests to address an increasingly complex set of constituent, environmental, regulatory, and economic development needs, the press release said.
More information will be added as it becomes available.
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