The fight to preserve the history of the K-25 site in west Oak Ridge was long and arduous. Among the challenges were federal funding battles and deteriorated building conditions.
Other people might have considered the dilapidated K-25 Building, once the world’s largest building under one roof, a “useless hulk,” one friend and colleague said. But historic preservationist Bill Wilcox, who died Monday evening, never gave up on his dream of honoring the site’s history.
Now mostly demolished, the mile-long, U-shaped K-25 Building was erected as part of the top-secret Manhattan Project. That was a federal program to build the world’s first atomic bombs during World War II. But the four-story building has been shut down since 1964 and fallen into disrepair, and the U.S. Department of Energy is converting the site into a massive industrial park and demolishing many of the original buildings. [Read more…]