U.S. Army Corps of Engineers: Building Strong 2018-2019

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CONTENTS INTERVIEW WITH LT. GEN. TODD T. SEMONITE...................................... 10 Commanding General and Chief of Engineers

ARMY CORPS RESPONDS, SUPPORTS NATIONAL RESPONSE TO HURRICANE FLORENCE................................................... 20

DIVISIONS GREAT LAKES AND OHIO RIVER DIVISION.............................................. 28 MISSISSIPPI VALLEY DIVISION................................................................. 42 NORTH ATLANTIC DIVISION....................................................................... 56 NORTHWESTERN DIVISION....................................................................... 68 PACIFIC OCEAN DIVISION.......................................................................... 78 SOUTH ATLANTIC DIVISION....................................................................... 88 SOUTH PACIFIC DIVISION........................................................................... 100

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SOUTHWESTERN DIVISION ....................................................................... 112 TRANSATLANTIC DIVISION ....................................................................... 126



U.S. ARMY ENGINEERING AND SUPPORT CENTER, HUNTSVILLE....... 144 249th ENGINEER BATTALION (PRIME POWER)...................................... 148 U.S. ARMY GEOSPATIAL CENTER.............................................................. 150


412th THEATER ENGINEER COMMAND.................................................. 152 416th THEATER ENGINEER COMMAND................................................... 154 U.S. ARMY CORPS OF ENGINEERS INSTITUTE FOR WATER RESOURCES........................................................................... 156 U.S. ARMY CORPS OF ENGINEERS FINANCE CENTER.......................... 159


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U.S. ARMY CORPS OF ENGINEERS BUILDING STRONG® Serving the Nation and the Armed Forces Published by Faircount Media Group 4915 W. Cypress St. Tampa, FL 33607 Tel: 813.639.1900 www.defensemedianetwork.com www.faircount.com

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COVER: The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers celebrated the ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Olmsted Locks and Dam on Aug. 30, 2018. One of the nation’s largest civil works projects in history, the Olmsted Locks and Dam project is the result of 45 million labor hours and decades of effort by USACE Headquarters, Louisville District, and their partners to modernize and support the nation’s critical inland waterways. Seen here from the bow of a vessel inside the riverside chamber of Olmsted Locks and Dam. Photo by John Kelly, Pittsburgh District

©Copyright Faircount LLC. All rights reserved. Reproduction of editorial content in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited. Faircount LLC and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers do not assume responsibility for the advertisements, nor any representation made therein, nor the quality or deliverability of the products themselves. Reproduction of articles and photographs, in whole or in part, contained herein is prohibited without expressed written consent of the publisher, with the exception of reprinting for news media use. Printed in the United States of America. Permission to use various images and text in this publication was obtained from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers or U.S. Department of Defense and its agencies, and in no way is used to imply an endorsement by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers nor any U.S. Department of Defense entity for any claims or representations therein. None of the advertising contained herein implies U.S. Army Corps of Engineers or U.S. Department of Defense endorsement of any private entity or enterprise. This is not a publication of the U.S. Department of Defense or U.S. government.


LT. GEN. TODD T. SEMONITE Commanding General and Chief of Engineers BY BILL COSTLOW Lt. Gen. Todd T. Semonite is the 54th chief of engineers and commanding general of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE). Previously, he established the Army Talent Management Task Force and served as its first director. In this role, Semonite was responsible for reforming the way the Army acquires, develops, employs, and retains a talented workforce. Prior to these duties, he was the commanding general for Combined Security Transition Command-Afghanistan, responsible for the building of the Afghan army and police facilities through management of a $13 billion budget to support a 352,000-person workforce. Semonite is a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy and a registered professional engineer in Vermont and Virginia.


You’ve been in this position now for about 2.5 years. How have your priorities for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) changed since you took command?


Lt. Gen. Todd T. Semonite: When I took command in 2016, I assessed our strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats and how we are perceived by our partners, stakeholders, and critics. I listened, observed, and collected enormous amounts of data to inform the “three dimensions” of my leadership framework. The first dimension of this framework was strengthening the foundation. This dimension focuses on performing routine functions to a high standard, in a routine manner. It also means ensuring we have the right people, processes, and a values-based culture to carry out our public service mission. Operating with a strong foundation frees up our leaders at all levels to think and act strategically. We’ve come a long way and I’m happy with that. The second dimension is to deliver the program. This is our current focus and our credibility relies on our ability to deliver on our commitments. Our diverse portfolio of programs is comprised of highly complicated projects, often with challenging requirements. We are proud of the quality we deliver, but we continue to orient our process improvement and innovation initiatives towards the constraints of time and budget, and set accurate expectations upfront with sound estimates. The third dimension of my leadership framework is to achieve our vision. While we have a long track record of accomplishments, we have to be forward-thinking and push the envelope in terms of innovative delivery. Anticipating future conditions, challenges and opportunities and taking thoughtful decisive action today will prepare us for the unknown future.


Lt. Gen. Todd T. Semonite, 54th U.S. Army chief of engineers and commanding general of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, assesses effects of Hurricane Florence in North Carolina during his visit Sept. 19. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) was working with the local, state, and federal response for Hurricane Florence.

USACE also provides support for other federal agencies such as the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), the U.S. Agency for International Development, the FBI, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), and others. What can you tell us about the extent of USACE support to interagency partners such as the VA? The Corps maintains a presence in about 130-plus countries worldwide, addressing challenges of national and global significance related to water resources, disaster preparedness, infrastructure development, and environmental protection. Domestically, we are proud to team with our interagency partners such as the departments of Energy, Interior, and Veterans Affairs; the Customs and Border Protection agency; the Environmental Protection Agency; and the Bureau of Reclamation to name just a few.

A current example of our partnering efforts is our work with the Department of Veterans Affairs. We’re honored to serve as their design and construction agent, which currently encompasses [a] workload valued at about $5.9 billion to address 14 major construction projects in eight states. In support of the Department of Energy, we have a five-year Memorandum of Agreement with the National Nuclear Security Administration [NNSA] at a value of $4.5 billion that allows continued support to the development of NNSA’s aged infrastructure. Another example is our continued work in support of the State Department, Defense Department [DOD], U.S. Agency for International Development, and the government of Iraq at the Mosul Dam – a major piece of infrastructure that is at a much greater risk of catastrophic failure than any in the U.S. The government of Iraq requested the Corps to oversee emergency repairs and train a cadre of Iraqis to handle 11


USACE Commanding General Lt. Gen. Todd Semonite participates in a briefing on Oct. 11, 2018, to review the latest information on then-Tropical Storm Michael in Washington, D.C.

future repairs. To accomplish this mission, the Corps assembled a voluntary task force of experts who originated from our 43 districts, and deployed them to an austere environment. Each day, their efforts are reducing the risk to thousands of Iraqis who reside downstream of the dam. We are very proud to team with our international and interagency partners to achieve important outcomes. I think we will continue to see growth in this area due to challenging fiscal environments and finite technical expertise available to deliver high-tech facilities. Much of the nation’s infrastructure is more than 50 years old. What’s necessary to improve it? 12

When it comes to infrastructure, many people think of roads, rails, and runways … they often forget about the role of our rivers, waterways, and ports. Our water resources infrastructure is one of America’s greatest assets, and offers us a tremendous economic advantage. No other country in the world can connect raw materials, imports, and exports to the interior nation [where the nation’s breadbasket and manufacturing bases exist] with the most economical mode of transport in existence like America can. However, most of our water resources infrastructure was built out in the 1960s and 1970s; based on cost, replacing these facilities is unrealistic and we must focus maintenance to keep them operational. In fact, more than 50 percent of our national infrastructure, valued at more than a quarter-of-a-trillion dollars, is


Lt. Gen. Todd Semonite meets with personnel at a levee facility in the Portland District, July 26, 2018.

more than 50 years old – so the magnitude of maintaining our aged water resources infrastructure is monumental. Making the aging infrastructure more resilient requires a collaborative effort between government agencies, industry and public/ private partnerships. The Corps is strongly committed to working with our interagency partners and integrating public private partnerships into our business processes. Projects that were single purpose now require a multi-purpose, systems approach. As integrators, we work with our partners (local, state, federal) to determine and implement most effective solutions, including structural and environmental or a combination of both, to solve infrastructure challenges. We also have to work with partners to articulate risk and notification procedures and the importance of evacuation routes and better building techniques.

USACE is known for civil works, but what can you tell us about your support to national defense? The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers exists to support national defense; our mission is to deliver vital engineering solutions, in collaboration with our partners, to secure our nation, energize our economy, and reduce risk from disaster. The Corps is a globally recognized leader in civil engineering, military engineering, and science, and we apply our diverse range of capabilities in support of worldwide requirements to support diplomacy, defense, and development – the three pillars underpinning our “National Security Strategy.” Our unique authorities, international and interagency partnerships, integrated civil-military capabilities, and expeditionary mindset serve to directly support 13

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On July 26, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Commanding General Lt. Gen. Todd Semonite toured the U.S. Government Moorings, located on the west bank of the Willamette River, and the Portland VA Health Care Hospital, among other visits within the Portland District.

[the] Army, our geographical combatant commands, and the nation. We continue to do a lot of security engagement throughout all of the combatant commands. Executing our military programs portfolio is one of the most important ways we support defense readiness. In fiscal year 2018 alone, our military programs are valued at about $21 billon, including $10.9 billion in military construction; about $1.4 billion in environmental programs; nearly $4.5 billion in installation support; $1 billion in real estate; $2.2 billion in Interagency and International Services; $3.9 billion in host-nation/Foreign Military Sales; and just over $1.01 billion in other military mission support. Military construction plays a vital role in national defense by providing engineering, construction, and environmental management services for the Army, Air Force, other government agencies, and foreign governments that significantly contribute to our nation’s security and energizing the economy. A great example is the construction of the Cyber Center of Excellence at Fort Gordon, Georgia. The Corps will deliver about 70 different buildings at a cost of about $2 billion over the next 12 years. The new facility will draw together the Army’s cyber operations, capability development, training, and education

in one collaborative environment to support the next generation of the Army’s cyber force. There are countless other examples ongoing around the world. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Omaha District first designed and now is building a one-of-a-kind $1.2 billion facility that will allow U.S. Strategic Command at Offutt Air Base, Nebraska, to continue their mission of coordinating the necessary command and control capabilities of the nation’s global strategic forces. Last year we completed of Davis Barracks, the first new barracks at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point since 1972. This design-build project incorporated many affordable environmental and energy-use enhancements to assist the academy in its aspiration to become a net zero [energy] installation. We support the Missile Defense Agency in Redzikowo, Poland, with the construction of a ballistic missile defense complex consisting of a fire-control radar deckhouse and an associated Aegis command, control, and communications suite, improving the defensive coverage against medium- and intermediate-range threats. At U.S. Army Garrison [USAG] Humphreys in Korea, the Corps is delivering a 418,572-square-foot USAG Humphreys hospital and 15





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Above: Pictured from left, USACE’s Lt. Gen. Todd Semonite receives an update from Maj. Yanson Cox, Wilmington District deputy commander and Recovery Field Office (RFO) deputy commander, and Col. Robert J. Clark, Wilmington District commander and RFO commander, on debris removal efforts on St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands April 11, 2018. Semonite also took the opportunity to thank personnel and recognize the team’s efforts. Right: Lt. Gen. Todd Semonite meets with FEMA’s Region II coordinating officer, Bill Vogel, on St. Croix April 11, 2018.

ambulatory care center, comprising a 68-bed in-patient wing and an out-patient clinic wing. The new hospital will replace and enhance the functions and services of the existing Yongsan hospital by providing a full range of health care services to the expanded population at USAG Humphreys. And finally, our Military Program portfolio also includes delivery of state-of-the-art 21st century schools in support of the Department of Defense Education Activity. In this area, we’re on track to execute $4.2 billion of construction for 88 schools worldwide, in addition to 23 schools delivered to date. While the Trump administration has pledged support for improving infrastructure, that doesn’t always translate to appropriations for USACE. How do you resource projects when the federal appropriation doesn’t provide the funds? Could you talk about that? Because the nation has so many fiscal requirements, we have to find additional ways of stretching our valuable civil works dollars. Innovative financing, such as public/private partnerships, may help with leveraging private money to offset some of the federal financial obligation. These mechanisms are likely to assume greater importance in the future, particularly in our efforts to transform civil works and reduce disaster risks. A great example is the Fargo-Moorhead Flood Risk Reduction Project along the Red River on the border of North Dakota and Minnesota. This area has flooded 10 of the last 11 years, affects about 200,000 people every time it floods, and has incurred millions in flood damages over the years. If we were to construct this project in the conventional manner, it would have taken 16 years, but through the use of a

public-private partnership, we think we can complete the project in 6.5 years. If, in fact, we did it conventionally, the federal share would have been on an order of magnitude of $850 million, but with the use of a private partner, the federal share would only be $450 million. From an efficiency perspective, the conventional method could have employed as many as 28 contracts, but the current proposal would only employ 11 contracts. So this is a way that we can be fiscally responsible in how we deliver civil works projects – an innovative approach that will allow us to continue to protect thousands of residents of this area while at the same time saving a significant amount of money and saving a significant amount of time. We aim to explore many similar opportunities across our other business lines across the country. Construction work and development can be a threat to nature. How does USACE minimize damage and leave the smallest footprint? The Corps takes our obligation to the law, and to the safety and wellness of our fellow citizens seriously. In large part, our operations involve water; water is critical to sustain life, and clean water is what supports a high quality of life. Development is critical for our economic well-being; conversely it has the potential to negatively impact our precious resources, so a challenge always exists to keep in balance. We value working in partnership with government and non-government partners, and stakeholders to make risk-based and science-informed decisions that are in the best interest of the public good. The Corps also has a broader regulatory role and issues approximately 80,000 permit decisions annually to public and private applicants. These permit decisions enable billions of dollars of economic development, thus advancing job creation related to critical transportation, energy, and other infrastructure development projects nationwide. We work to efficiently and effectively provide permit decisions to the public to ensure projects are carried out in an environmentally sound manner. USACE has been heavily involved in disaster response operations in Guam, the Carolinas, and Hawaii. What can you tell us about USACE’s approach to disaster response and recovery? 17




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Lt. Gen. Todd Semonite speaks at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers North Atlantic Division change-of-command ceremony at the Fort Hamilton Community Club in Brooklyn, New York, on July 19, 2018.

We’ve basically been going all out since late August with three major storms that all hit at about the same time. It was quite the challenge for FEMA and DOD to be able to not only take care of the storm you’re working right now, but to be able to look forward at that next storm, and to be able to forecast requirements and have the right teams to be able to react. So when we come into these disasters, we normally do at least five major functions: Port opening. You’ve got to be able to get logistics into these areas to get supplies back in. We come in the day after the storm, survey the ports and enable dredges and barges to be able to continue to get materials in and out. Debris removal. For the other support teams to be able to perform their missions, they must have mobility. So, we come in with big contractors that go out and immediately start picking up debris and putting it in large trucks to transport to sorting areas. Blue roofs. If you have a house and 50 percent of the house is still intact, then we will come back in and put a blue tarp over the roof to really continue to be able to protect that house. Infrastructure. After the storm, we go back in and assess that infrastructure. We have programs that if a police station gets wiped out,

we can rebuild a temporary building. We can go back in and help get a school up and running. Electricity. Our strategy here is four-fold: (1) provide temporary power until the grid is restored, (2) enable power generation capabilities, (3) assist with the re-establishment of transmission systems, and (4) facilitate distribution to individual buildings and homes – what we call “the last mile.” We have more than 50 specially trained response teams with pre-awarded emergency contracts to perform a wide range of public works and engineering-related support missions. In 2017, USACE had 5,731 personnel deployments in response to 59 emergencies. USACE conducts its emergency response activities under two basic authorities – Public Law 84-99 (Flood Control and Coastal Emergencies) and when mission assigned by FEMA under the Stafford Disaster and Emergency Assistance Act. Under Public Law 84-99 (Flood Control and Coastal Emergencies), USACE provides disaster preparedness services and advanced planning measures designed to reduce the amount of damage caused by an impending disaster. Under the Stafford Act, the Corps supports the Department of Homeland Security and Federal Emergency Management Agency in carrying out the National Response Plan, which calls on 30 federal departments and agencies to provide coordinated disaster relief and recovery operations. In any disaster, we have three top priorities: Support immediate life-saving and life-safety emergency response priorities; Sustain lives with critical temporary emergency power and other needs; and Initiate recovery efforts by assessing and restoring critical infrastructure. What can we expect from USACE in the near future? The mission of each of our 34,000-plus people is to deliver vital engineering solutions, along with our partners, to secure the nation, energize our economy, and reduce risks related to disasters. Almost everything we’re currently doing, or anticipate doing, goes back to those three things – secure the nation, energize our economy, and reduce risks related to disaster. Some of our perilous missions might not necessarily be ones we want to take on, but we must take them on. Why? Because our vision is to “engineer solutions to the nation’s toughest challenges.” We have abundant evidence, 243 years’ worth, that demonstrates we deliver on our commitments, and I intend to make sure we continue to deliver. We’ve got to deliver the program today, and also must look at what future challenges America is going to ask us to tackle and we’ve got to be ready, willing, and able to step up to help, before we’re asked. I believe we will continue to play our full part in promoting our nation’s peace, prosperity, and sustainability through our science and engineering expertise and leadership. What they do, day after day, contributes significantly to mission success and the achievement of our vision in support of national interests. Everything we do supports the Army and our nation’s readiness. We need to keep setting the example of what right looks like. Together we will continue to engineer solutions for the nation’s toughest challenges. 19



The Deployable Tactical Operations System (DTOS) is a coordination of both teams and equipment put together to provide critical communications in the event of significant man-made or natural disasters. The Emergency Command and Control Vehicles are deployed with two-man teams. The units are self-contained, with a workspace for up to 11 users simultaneously.


“We’re all in.”

Those were the words Lt. Gen. Todd T. Semonite, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers commanding general and 54th chief of engineers, spoke moments before Hurricane Florence made landfall on Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina, just east of Wilmington, as a Category 1 hurricane Sept. 14, 2018. “The Army is ready to jump in and respond,” he said. What meteorologists called the wettest hurricane on record in the Carolinas, Hurricane Florence brought extreme flooding throughout the south Atlantic region. It overtopped dams, inundated hundreds 20

of miles of stream and rivers and cut off power to hundreds of thousands of residents. In addition it damaged roads, railways and closed ports in North Carolina and South Carolina, totaling billions of dollars in damage and taking at least 44 lives. Even before Florence made landfall, hydrologic engineers and flood risk management experts in Washington and Atlanta partnered with teams on the ground and immediately began monitoring conditions. This included hundreds of miles of levees and 33 dams throughout the region. Officials also kept close watch on the 6,000 miles of navigation channels and 29 ports within the South Atlantic


Jason Whittaker, Savannah District structural engineer, checks the sea floor for scouring near a wharf in North Carolina, while Wayne Boeck, Omaha District structural engineer (not shown), takes notes as part of an inspection of the installation’s infrastructure in support of recovery efforts after Hurricane Florence.


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Division. Experts from across the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) were placed on standby, trying to anticipate the needs of the public in order to provide rapid flood fighting assistance. In addition to the federally owned projects, special dam assessment teams also hit the ground to inspect more than 80 privately owned dams in the Carolinas and Georgia. They also assessed dams inside Fort Bragg and Seymour Johnson Air Force Base in North Carolina; Fort Jackson, South Carolina; and Fort Gordon, Georgia. This technical assistance provides these installation commanders and local community leaders actionable technical support – addressing boils, and effects of overtopping – and helped warn communities downstream of dams at risk for failure.

EVERY MINUTE OF WARNING MATTERS Serving as the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) engineers, at the height of the response more than 300 USACE employees from around the country deployed to these areas to help

USACE’s temporary emergency power team, working alongside FEMA in the aftermath of Hurricane Florence, sent Soldiers from the 249th Engineer Battalion (Prime Power) to work with local partners in Robeson County, North Carolina, to assess a downed generator at the Fairmont Wastewater Treatment Facility. The facility was landlocked with the nearby Lumber River flooding the area due to the storm, including the section of Highway 74 that provides access. USACE and county officials were airlifted onto the temporary island by U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

support and oversee emergency support functions. This included deploying: • 125,000 sandbags; • 11,580 super sandbags; • 29,000 linear feet of rapidly deployable flood fighting structures commonly referred to as HESCO bastions; • 30,000 feet of polyethylene sheeting; and 23

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performing critical geographic information systems missions, and providing important expertise to local and state emergency management agencies. USACE also dispatched seven deployable tactical operation system vehicles to provide on-the-ground command and control at specific areas. Power teams, along with Soldiers with the 249th Engineering Battalion (Prime Power) installed seven generators to help power military installations and critical infrastructure. Critical infrastructure includes facilities such as shelters, hospitals, and wastewater treatment facilitates needed to help the region recover from the disaster. “Preparations for this response began long before Florence became a named hurricane” said Charles “Ray” Alexander, USACE director of Contingency Operations. “Annually, the Corps trains and equips all supporting TEAM members, military and civilian, to prepare them for deploying in the face of a civil disaster. This includes recurring collaboration with our federal, state, and local partners to ensure a coordinated effort in both response and recovery operations.” said Alexander.

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers beach renourishment operations underway along Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, following Hurricane Florence, Sept. 22, 2018. These operations are designed to help rehabilitate shorelines to mitigate risk of storm-related damage to coastal communities and infrastructure. This project is part of rehabilitation efforts from previous hurricanes, but was put on hold due to Hurricane Florence. Work resumed when the dredging craft that had moved to safe harbor during the storm returned to continue operations.

As streets flooded, USACE’s Geographic Information System experts quickly developed an online “Trafficability Inundation Mapping Tool” to provide the public with information on what regions are affected by the flood waters from Hurricane Florence. These rapidly updated maps indicate the severity of flood waters and their impact on vehicle movement in the affected areas. The maps showed the Catawba, Pee Dee, Cape Fear, Lumber, Neuse, Tar, Yakin, and Roanoke water basins along with other areas. While the response was swift in the south, Florence transitioned to a tropical storm and made its way up towards the Northeast, bringing near-record water level to projects in the North Atlantic Division. 25

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Maj. Gen. Scott Spellmon (center), deputy commanding general for Civil and Emergency Operations, discusses the emergency response plan for South Carolina following Hurricane Florence with Keith Skinner, emergency management specialist.

For example, at Sayers Lake, which sits on the western branch of the Susquehanna River in Pennsylvania, the dam experienced its highest water levels since 1972. As the remnants of Hurricane Florence shifted out to the Atlantic, dam and levee safety experts provided 24-hour monitoring of the region’s 54 dams, more than 650 miles of levees, and 22 storm and hurricane barriers to ensure they functioned as designed. They also worked with local municipalities to provide flood fighting measures, such as sandbags and engineering expertise, while also keeping an eye on the region’s ports and bridges. The recovery of this storm is expected to take time. As USACE’s response transitions to recovery phase, and as conditions allow,

workers have begun early assessments of impacts to key areas such as coastline projects. “Every cubic yard of sand we’re able to put on the coastline means protection for somebody,” said Brig. Gen. Diana Holland, the commander of USACE’s South Atlantic Division. Crews from the Charleston District began to measure the sand lost and how much new sand is needed to return these projects to their original profile. “Well, it’s important to really accurately reflect what erosion occurred because of the storm. Because the funding is in support of storm recovery we have to be as accurate as possible, and that means getting out there as soon as possible,” said Holland. In addition to these long-term recovery efforts, USACE will continue to respond to the needs of the community on behalf of FEMA and the overall federal effort. “I am honored to be leading such a dedicated team of professionals committed to making a positive difference in the lives of the most vulnerable,” said Semonite. n 27





Left: Great Lakes and Ohio River Division graphic from 2018. Above: A USACE contractor uses a clamshell attached to a crane to place dredged materials at a site designated for wetland habitat restoration on Unity Island in Buffalo, New York, June 1, 2018. The dredged materials come from the Niagara River alongside the Black Rock Lock, close to the project site.

GREAT LAKES AND OHIO RIVER DIVISION (LRD) 550 Main St., Room 10524 Cincinnati, OH 45202 513-684-3010 www.lrd.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/USACELRD/ www. twitter.com/USACELRD www.flickr.com/photos/lrdusace/

DETROIT DISTRICT (LRE) 477 Michigan Ave. Detroit, MI 48226 313-226-4680 www.lre.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/USACEDetroitDistrict/ www.twitter.com/detroitdistrict www.flickr.com/photos/detroit_district

NASHVILLE DISTRICT (LRN) 801 Broadway A415 Nashville, TN 37203 615-736-7161 www.lrn.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/nashvillecorps www.twitter.com/NashvilleCorps www.flickr.com/photos/nashvillecorps/

BUFFALO DISTRICT (LRB) 1776 Niagara St. Buffalo, NY 14207 716-879-4349 www.lrb.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/BuffaloDistrict www.twitter.com/USACE_Buffalo www.flickr.com/photos/buffalousace

HUNTINGTON DISTRICT (LRH) 502 Eighth St. Huntington, WV 25701 304-399-5591 www.lrh.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/USACELRH/ www.twitter.com/huntingtoncorps/ www.flickr.com/photos/huntingtoncorps/

PITTSBURGH DISTRICT (LRP) 1000 Liberty Ave. Pittsburgh, PA 15222 412-395-7500 www.lrp.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/PittsburghUSACE www.twitter.com/PittsburghUSACE www.flickr.com/photos/pittsburghcorps/

CHICAGO DISTRICT (LRC) 231 S. LaSalle St., Suite, 1500 Chicago, IL 60604 312-846-5330 www.lrc.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/usacechicago www.flickr.com/photos/usacechicago/

LOUISVILLE DISTRICT (LRL) 600 Dr. Martin Luther King Dr. Louisville, KY 40202 502-315-6766 www.lrl.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/LouisvilleUSACE www.twitter.com/LouisvilleUSACE www.flickr.com/photos/louisvilleusace/




Personnel from USACE contractor Pike-P.J. Dick prepare to encase electrical conduits in concrete to deliver power to the future outpatient clinic and temporary kitchen, May 18, 2018.


he U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) and the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) are partners in delivering the Canandaigua VA Medical Center mega project, providing a state-of-the-art medical facility and health care service infrastructure to approximately 65,000 veterans living in and around the greater Canandaigua, New York, area. “We are forever grateful to our men and women in uniform,” said USACE Buffalo District Commander Lt. Col. Jason Toth. “Updating the Canandaigua Medical Center is essential to making sure that New York’s veterans have access to the best medical care possible.” The project is directly managed by USACE’s Buffalo District in concert with the VA Office of Construction and Facilities Management and the Canandaigua VA Medical Center. The Louisville District will provide technical expertise on the vertical construction of the project. “The major construction project at the Canandaigua VA Medical Center provides much-needed updates to a campus that is more than 80 years old,” said Kenneth P. Piazza, acting medical center director. A primary goal of the project is the efficient delivery of health care services. Accordingly, the project will minimize recurring maintenance 29

GRE AT L AKES AND OHIO RIVER DIVISION costs for underutilized buildings and improve areas such as safety/ compliance requirements, patient privacy standards, and security and access points. The project contains two phases. USACE successfully initiated Phase I (Outpatient Clinic) in January 2018 with an anticipated completion date in spring 2022. As of August 2018, Phase II (Community Living Center) was in the project assessment and acceptance phase. Phase I work includes renovation of the administration building, demolition of the dining room and kitchen, as well as construction of a chiller/emergency generator plant and outpatient clinic. Phase II work includes constructing a community living center, a community center, renovations to existing buildings, and utility system upgrades to support the new and renovated spaces. “To execute the project, we formed a regional project delivery team comprised of subject-matter experts from the Buffalo and Louisville districts, as well as the USACE Medical Center of Expertise,” said Gerald DiPaola, Buffalo District project manager. “USACE brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to the project,” said Piazza. “Both the Veterans Health Administration and

USACE have approached the process by placing a high emphasis on partnering and sharing of information.” USACE’s partnership with the VA resulted in formal agreements for design and construction oversight of 13 major medical facilities valued at approximately $6 billion. One such facility, the Rocky Mountain Regional Medical Center in Aurora, Colorado, opened in August 2018. “Investment in the facility demonstrates federal government support for veteran care at the medical center as well as support for local employment,” said Piazza. “It gives me a sense of pride in knowing that we will continue to provide the best possible care to veterans that seek medical care here.” “For myself, this project serves as a reminder of my service in the U.S. Army,” said DiPaola. “I look forward to seeing our veterans’ lives and their families’ lives improved by these state-of-the-art facilities, in an environment that promotes healing and honors veterans’ service.” “The history of the Corps of Engineers is linked to our armed forces and our veterans,” said Lt. Col. Jason Toth. “We’re proud to deliver solutions for the challenges they face, now and into the future.” n



or decades, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Chicago District has been working on McCook Reservoir, a massive, multi-stage flood risk management project in southwest Cook County that’s been one of the largest undertakings it has ever had. The reservoir, a partnership between USACE and the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District (MWRD) of Greater Chicago, is part of the Tunnel and Reservoir Plan (TARP) that covers Chicago and 51 suburbs – a 375-square-mile area. The Deep Tunnel system includes three reservoirs – Majewski, Thornton, and McCook – as an outlet for TARP water. McCook Reservoir will benefit Chicago and 36 suburbs, protecting 570,000 structures and 3 million people. It will also help to prevent transportation disruptions from flooding for Chicago, a transportation hub for the nation. It will hold 10 billion gallons of combined sewer (sanitary and storm) overflows that cause flooding and watercourse contamination. On Dec. 4, 2017, a ribbon-cutting ceremony was held


to mark the completion of McCook Reservoir Stage 1, with Stage 2’s expected completion in 2029. The McCook project delivery team (PDT) faced a hard deadline of Dec. 31, 2017, to get Stage 1 on line. Over the past several years, the team worked with a sense of urgency to meet the deadline. The PDT focused attention on the result, project execution, customer satisfaction, and worked synergistically to achieve the great success of delivering the reservoir before the cutoff date. For some of the McCook PDT, the deadline was the culmination of decades of work on the reservoir. Large civil works projects often take decades to implement from planning through design and final construction. The McCook Reservoir was first conceived in the 1960s and was authorized by Congress in 1988. Some of the PDT members have served on the team for many years. As the McCook project manager, Mike Padilla, Programs and Project Management Branch, began work on the reservoir in 1993 when he



was still an engineering intern, and worked on the project from 1993 to 2000. He worked on the civil design section of the design documentation report (DDR) for the old McCook Quarry Reservoir, the site of the original project before Congress moved it to the present lagoons’ site. The district had just finished the McCook Quarry DDR when it was tasked by Congress to evaluate a different site. He worked on the resulting special re-evaluation report that recommended the current lagoons’ reservoir site. Ironically, the lagoons’ site was the proposed site of the reservoir in planning reports from the early 1970s before it was rejected in favor of the McCook Quarry site. During Padilla’s work with civil design, he designed the overall site layout and the connecting tunnel alignments for the new reservoir. Later, he left Chicago to work for USACE’s Seattle District as a project manager and returned in 2010 to take over as project manager for the McCook Project. The project has resulted in numerous state-of-the-art advancements for many different geotechnical and geology design and construction

Chicago District Commander Col. Aaron Reisinger speaks at the Dec. 4, 2017, McCook ribbon-cutting ceremony. Stage 1 of the McCook Reservoir can be seen in the background.

approaches, including transforming soil-bentonite slurry walls into rock; foundation grouting for seepage control more than 300 foot deep; rock wall stabilization of 250-foot-high walls; soil slope stabilization; large diameter rock tunneling and very large underground excavations; automated instrumentation; and rock-stress modeling, which has provided a wealth of experience to USACE and the overall construction industry. Padilla and the rest of the team of about 90 had their decades of work affirmed when the reservoir was put to the test during the storm event of Feb. 21, 2018. The storm filled the reservoir to capacity. However, the reservoir performed as designed and prevented an estimated $30 million in flood damages, a performance that indeed culminated decades of the team’s planning, engineering, design, and construction efforts. n 31




“An outage at the Soo Locks would have very significant [effects] to the U.S. economy, particularly steel manufacturers,” said Mollie Mahoney, project manager for the new lock project, “because 100 percent of the nation’s advanced high-strength steel used for the manufacture of products like automobiles and appliances is made with taconite [iron ore] that transits the Poe Lock.” The report will allow the project to compete with other construction projects throughout the country for funding. The new Soo lock is estimated to cost approximately $1 billion and if funded in an efficient manner, construction of the project could be complete in seven to 10 years. n

An artist’s rendition that illustrates what it might look like if a second Poe-sized lock replaced two of the older locks (left portion of the photo). The Poe Lock, opened in 1969, was the last lock built in the Soo Locks system, the only passage between Lake Superior and the lower lakes. A second Poe-sized lock (far left), the Poe Lock (center), and MacArthur Lock (far right). GRAPHIC COURTESY OF U.S. ARMY CORPS OF ENGINEERS

he path has been laid for a new lock at the Soo Locks in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan, with an updated economic study. The recent completion of the “New Soo Lock Economic Validation Study” report establishes updated economics and a new benefit to cost ratio for the construction of a second lock with the same dimensions as the current Poe Lock. “The Detroit District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), is proud to operate and maintain the Soo Locks in service to the nation. Now we’re ready to get after the construction of the new ‘Poe-sized’ lock in order to continue to provide reliable navigation at this critical node in the Great Lakes Navigation System,” said Lt. Col. Greg Turner, district engineer. The Soo Locks are situated on the St. Mary’s River at Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan, and allow vessels to transit the St. Mary’s River rapids located between Lake Superior and Lake Huron. Eighty-five percent of annual Soo Locks tonnage is restricted to the Poe Lock due to vessel size – there is no other alternate mode of transportation if the Poe Lock experiences a significant service disruption.





An aerial view of Bluestone Dam as it releases water held back during a storm to reduce levels downriver.

BY BRIAN MAK A , Huntington District


owering above the scenic New River in southern West Virginia, Bluestone Dam seems out of place. It’s a massive concrete structure built in the 1940s to reduce flooding across the state. It stands 165 feet tall and stretches almost a half-mile across the rustic river valley, creating the 11-milelong Bluestone Lake. But despite its size and its long history of success – preventing more than $5 billion in flood damages during its lifetime – the ability of the dam to withstand a major storm was called into question in the late 1990s. New information about the bedrock below the dam and the potential strength of future storms sparked concern, and in the 20 years since, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) has labored to bring the dam up to modern safety standards as part of its Dam Safety Assurance project. That has been accomplished through a combination of innovative techniques and classic construction safeguards. That has included

building a massive concrete thrust block to strengthen the dam, redesigning and strengthening the stilling basin – which “stills” the water and removes its energy before it continues downstream – and stabilizing the dam with a unique system of anchors. Senior Project Manager Aaron Smith said, “We’ve been installing nearly 500 rock anchors into the face and top of the dam. These anchors are made up of 61 strands of wire rope that are directionally drilled deep into the bedrock and help the dam resist the intense forces of extreme storm waters up against the face of the dam.” The work has been completed over the years as funding has become available, and now the final steps are in reach, thanks to the announcement that the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018, which was signed into law Feb. 9, 2018. It has provided $574.7 million to USACE for construction at Bluestone Dam. “In providing the current working estimates of funds required to fully fund these studies and construction projects, the Corps is showing its commitment to “moving dirt” and, more importantly, 33


to completing studies and construction,” according to R.D. James, assistant secretary of the Army for Civil Works. That funding will allow the completion of the Dam Safety Assurance work at Bluestone, including re-armoring the large spillway area below the main section of the dam. That effort will require blocking off the spillway one section at a time, allowing normal dam operations to continue through the construction process. A concrete dividing wall will be installed, the basin will be lined with concrete, and super baffles will be constructed.

The project is a major investment for the future, insuring that Bluestone Dam will be able to safely hold back and discharge water flows in most flood conditions. When completed, the dam will be able to handle all but the most catastrophic weather event – and will continue doing the job it has done so well for the past 70 years – protecting the residents who live below its towering walls. n



ith a mantra of “We are Olmsted,” Louisville District employees and retirees reflected on the dedication, determination, and work to complete the Olmsted Locks and Dam project that has crossed three

decades. “Adversity builds character, but more importantly, adversity reveals character, and the individuals involved in delivering this project certainly showed the character,” said Mike Braden, former Olmsted Division chief. John Allison, deputy chief of engineering division, served as the project engineer for the first contract with the Olmsted project, which consisted of the access road into the site along with the engineer’s office that has been used for 30 years. “For three or four years, we talked about creating concrete that would float. But on that cold November morning in the early 2000s, we stood there, and we could feel we were moving and floating in that water,” Allison said. Marcella Denton, IT operations officer, worked as a geotechnical engineer at the beginning of the Olmsted Locks and Dam project, which started construction in the early 1990s. “My job was sampling and testing, reading instrumentation on the site, and cataloging thousands of feet of boring logs,” Denton said of her geotechnical work. “I am honored to be a small part of this engineering marvel.” David Dale became the first Olmsted division chief in 2012. Now retired, Dale said, “There are three things I want to share with you that I think contributed to that success. One was the laser-like focus that we established to deliver the project ahead of schedule and under budget with a very high level of quality in a safe manner.

“The second part was the partnership we had with our AECOM contractor with the Corps employees and staff,” he said. “The third item was a true focus on risk management, the active looking ahead at items that could impact the project and taking proactive measures to mitigate those and to deliver the program.” Serving as staff engineer from 1996 to 2000 at the construction field office, Mike Braden served as Olmsted Division chief from July 2013 to July 2018. “How fortunate I was to be part of the delivery of what my estimation is, after the Panama Canal, the second-most ambitious navigation project ever attempted by the Corps of Engineers,” Braden said. “To be part of one of the most innovative navigation projects the Corps has ever delivered, I feel fortunate to be part of that experience. “For a project that has the lifespan of an Olmsted Locks and Dam project, there are good times and bad times. Rather than to get down during some of the challenges with the project, our team really rallied, especially in light of deteriorating condition at Locks and Dams 52 and 53 as they approach the end of their service life and the urgency to deliver Olmsted sooner rather than later came into focus.” Braden credited the project delivery team in advancing the delivery of the project within four years while saving several millions of dollars to be spread to other navigation projects across the enterprise. The true character of those who worked on the project is brought to light by the James M. Keen Wicket Lifter, named after a project staffer who retired from the project in 2012 and passed away in 2016. Employees will use the lifter to raise and lower 140 wickets at the project to create a navigable pool. As one employee stated, the wicket lifter’s picking arm is like a Swiss army knife and has interchangeable equipment, including water jets and fork. The Olmsted 35




Above: An aerial view of the Olmsted Locks and Dam project on the lower Ohio River. Left: USACE Louisville District personnel continue testing new equipment that will raise the wickets on the dam at Olmsted, Illinois.


team used the wicket lifter to raise the first wicket at the project on June 13, 2018. The wicket lifter showcases the project’s end of construction and proves USACE’s dedication and commitment to strengthening the nation’s security through infrastructure. This strategic reach of the Ohio River connects to the Tennessee, Cumberland, and Mississippi rivers to form the hub of the Inland Waterways Transportation System. More tonnage passes through this point than any other place in America’s inland navigation system, and is a critical reach of water from a commercial navigation perspective. With the project in operation in 2018, the next step will be the removal of Locks and Dams 52 and 53, with expected completion in 2022. n




The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Nashville District and its contractor partner, Johnson Brothers, put a 1.3-million-pound concrete shell into position Aug. 6, 2018, on the riverbed on the downstream end of the Kentucky Lock, where it will be part of a coffer dam and eventually a permanent part of the new lock wall for the Kentucky Lock Addition Project. It is the first of 10 shells that will be placed over the next year. The lock is located at Kentucky Dam, which is a Tennessee Valley Authority project at Tennessee River mile 22.4.


he U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Nashville District successfully placed the first 1.3-million-pound concrete shell on the riverbed Aug. 6, 2018, that will be part of the downstream cofferdam and the permanent lock wall for the Kentucky Lock Addition Project. A towboat moved the barge with the concrete shell into position underneath the gantry crane just below the existing Kentucky Lock late afternoon on Aug. 2. On Aug. 4, during the final lift, a problem developed in the lift system. Engineers worked all weekend until early Monday morning, making repairs.


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Barney Schulte, technical engineer for the Kentucky Lock Addition Project, checks specifications for the gantry crane lift system in preparation for the movement of a 1.3-million-pound concrete shell Aug. 4, 2018, into the downstream riverbed to form a cofferdam. The shell will also be part of the permanent lock wall.


The 46-foot-wide by 51-foot-long by 33-foot-high concrete shell is the first of 10 shells to be placed in the Tennessee River at the Tennessee Valley Authority project. Don Getty, Nashville District’s project manager for the Kentucky Lock Addition Project, said the challenges everyone faced with the heavy lift were not taken lightly, as all involved took the necessary time to make sure the lift system operated as designed so the shell could be placed safely.


GRE AT L AKES AND OHIO RIVER DIVISION “The learning curve on a new, unique, and complicated construction technique is steep,” Getty said. “We believe that aspects of this lift-in design have never been attempted.” Once all of the technical issues with the lift system were resolved on Aug. 6, the gantry barge moved the concrete shell about 200 yards to position itself in the set-down location where the contractor placed the shell into the water onto a prepared foundation on the bedrock. Crews finished its placement near midnight, and the Kentucky Lock reopened to barge traffic soon after. Jeremiah Manning, resident engineer for the Kentucky Lock Addition Project, lauded his team of on-site construction managers and the contractor partner, who set the first concrete shell and are working together to deliver the program for the downstream cofferdam project. “The lift-in technique that we’re using here in itself is unique with aspects that have never been used anywhere else,” Manning said. With the first concrete shell in position, it will be sealed and then

filled partially with “tremie concrete,” placed through a pipe underwater to the bottom of the shell to cure. All told, about 11 million pounds of concrete will be placed to fill the shell. USACE is constructing the new navigation lock to reduce the significant bottleneck that the 600-foot-long current lock causes on this important waterway. When completed, the downstream cofferdam will make possible to excavate and construct the new lock in dry conditions. The total cost for the Kentucky Lock project is $1.25 billion with about $455 million expended to date, or about 36 percent complete. Funding bottlenecks that have plagued the project since construction began in 1998 have been lifted in the last three years. This has allowed progress to proceed full tilt for the downstream cofferdam and allowed the advertisement of the next large construction contract: the downstream lock excavation. This contract is expected to be awarded by Sept. 30, 2018. n

#KNOWTAKEWEAR An effort to save lives by raising awareness BY JEFF HAWK , Pit tsburgh District

Life jackets can’t save lives. They can’t warn of the hazards that lie ahead. They can’t educate and inform. They can’t affix themselves to someone.


nly an individual can reduce the risk of injury or death by knowing the waterways, taking a water safety course, and wearing a life jacket. Those three simple, life-saving measures are the focal point for Pittsburgh District’s new water safety awareness campaign titled, “KnowTakeWear.” The initiative is a shared effort among the district and its water safety partners who have embraced the call to action. “To be successful, this initiative must become a sustained drumbeat by a dedicated, ever-expanding coalition of organizations and individuals,” said Col. Andrew “Coby” Short, commander, Pittsburgh District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE).


The first essential beat is knowing the waterways. Pittsburgh’s three rivers provide great recreational opportunities and plenty of ways to find trouble. From tows that take a mile to stop, to fast flows and floating debris, to fixed-crest dams that are difficult to see when moving downstream, the hazards that exist on area waterways can be deadly for the uniformed. “If someone arrives at a navigation facility without knowing it exists or the dangers it can present, they’ve already placed themselves in jeopardy,” said Short. The availability of mobile apps and social media place river conditions, weather forecasts, navigation charts, and more at the



fingertips of paddlers, boaters, and the fishing community. The Pittsburgh District developed the USACE Pittsburgh app that allows the public to access information whether kayaking or cabin cruising. The district also holds events to promote the KnowTakeWear message, including an annual water safety summit, Lockfest events, and Paddler Safety Lock-Throughs. During Lockfests, USACE lock operators familiarize the public and media with safe locking procedures at a lock and dam facility. Representatives from the U.S. Coast Guard, Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission, the Allegheny River Development Corporation, and the navigation industry also share information at the event, emphasizing safety considerations in the Pittsburgh area’s increasingly congested waterways. A new partnership between the Pittsburgh District and Venture Outdoors – a nonprofit that promotes outdoor activities – has captured media interest and helped boost the profile of KnowTakeWear. USACE and Venture Outdoors invite media to kayak through an Allegheny River lock with a fixed-crest dam so that they better understand the hazards associated with these dams and how to avoid them. The event generates traditional and social media coverage that helps spread KnowTakeWear to thousands. “If we can get the word to the most vulnerable boaters out there – those using paddleboards and kayaks – then we have a good chance of saving lives,” said Short.

Park ranger Julie Stone serves as a part of the newly formed pilot program River Rangers and watches paddlers approach Lock and Dam 2 on the Allegheny River. Stone and the river rangers promote and enforce water safety policies, which helps to ensure river users pass through the district’s navigation facilities safely.

A new 2018 pilot program is enforcing the message. The River Ranger Program involves random visitations to busy locks by park rangers. River Rangers encourage safe boating practices and enforce a new life jacket policy that requires all those aboard a boat and involved in the locking process to wear a personal flotation device. As the affordability of paddle craft increases and the revitalization of local waterways continues, the message of KnowTakeWear becomes more vital, especially for those venturing out for the first time. “Nowadays, you can buy a kayak for less than a bicycle, get on the water without any training or knowledge, and quickly place yourself in extreme danger,” said Short. “We’re committed to doing our part to raise awareness; we urge individuals to do theirs by knowing the waterways, taking a water safety course, and wearing a life jacket.” n 41



he Mississippi Valley Division is responsible for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) water resources programs within 370,000 square miles of the Mississippi River Valley. The division boundary encompasses the entire Mississippi River from Lake Itasca, Minnesota, to the Gulf of Mexico, and includes all or parts of 12 states: Kentucky, Tennessee, Louisiana, Mississippi, Illinois, Missouri, Arkansa, Iowa, Wisconsin, Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota. District offices located in St. Paul, Minnesota; Rock Island, Illinois; St. Louis, Missouri; Memphis, Tennessee; Vicksburg, Mississippi; and New Orleans, Louisiana; conduct the programs and activities overseen by the division. More than 250 tributaries drain into the Mississippi River, the largest of which are the Ohio and Missouri rivers. The 1.25-million-square mile Mississippi River drainage basin (third

ST. PAUL DISTRICT The St. Paul District encompasses 39,000 square miles in Minnesota, Wisconsin, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Iowa. Four river basins fall under their jurisdiction: the Upper Mississippi River, the Red River of the North, the Souris River, and the Rainy River. The district employs approximately 600 professionals at more than 40 sites within their five-state footprint. • 4 drainage basins • 13 locks and dams • 16 reservoirs • 102 recreations areas, with 1,189 campsites and 435 picnic sites • 280 miles of 9-foot navigation channels maintained St. Paul District (651) 290-5807 CEMVP-PA@usace.army.mil

ROCK ISLAND DISTRICT Founded in 1866, the Rock Island District encompasses more than 78,000 square miles in Iowa, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Missouri, and includes 314 miles of the Mississippi River from Guttenberg, Iowa, to Saverton, Missouri, and 268 miles of the Illinois waterway from Lake Street in downtown Chicago to the Lagrange lock and dam, southwest of Beardstown, Illinois. The district employs 42

largest in the world) gathers water from 41 percent of the continental United States, including all or parts of 31 states and two Canadian provinces. Missions throughout the division: • Navigation • Flood Risk Management • Environmental Stewardship • Emergency Operations • Real Estate Management • Regulatory • Recreation • Support for Others • Water Supply • Hydropower • Hurricane and Storm Damage Risk Reduction • Formerly Utilized Sites Remediation Action Program

approximately 800 professionals at its headquarters and 27 field office sites. • 3 reservoirs: Saylorville, Red Rock, and Coralville • 5 river basins: Des Moines, Rock, Iowa/ Cedar, Illinois, and Mississippi River basins • 20 lock and dam sites • 196 recreations areas, with 2,817 campsites and 451 picnic sites • 582 miles of navigation channel Rock Island District (309) 794-4200 CEMVR-CC@usace.army.mil

ST. LOUIS DISTRICT Founded in 1872, the St. Louis District is strategically located at the crossroads of three major river systems: the Illinois, Mississippi, and Missouri. The district encompasses some 28,000 square miles, almost equally divided between Illinois and Missouri. The district is responsible for 300 miles of the Mississippi River from Saverton, Missouri, to Cairo, Illinois, 80 miles of the Illinois River and 36 miles of the Kaskaskia River and reduces flood risks to more than 3,000 acres of industrial and commercial property. The district employs more than 650 professionals at its headquarters and 12 field office sites. • 10 rivers • 5 locks and dams

• 5 reservoirs: Carlyle, Shelbyville, Mark Twain, Rend, and Wappapello • 750 miles of levees • 92 flood control systems • 416 miles of navigable channel • 70 pumping plants • 162 recreation areas, with 4,141 campsites and 498 picnic sites • 1 hydropower plant St. Louis District (314) 331-8000 TeamSTL-PAO@usace.army.mil

MEMPHIS DISTRICT Founded in 1882, the Memphis District encompasses 25,000 square miles in portions of Mississippi, Tennessee, Arkansas, Missouri, Illinois, and Kentucky. Eleven major river basins fall under its jurisdiction, including the Mississippi, Ohio, White, and St. Francis rivers and West Tennessee tributaries. The Memphis District employs approximately 450 professional and skilled employees in its headquarters, Ensley Engineers Yard, area offices, and pumping plants. • 4 pumping plants • 11 drainage basins • 90 flood control structures • 741 miles of navigable channel • 1,200 miles of levees, including 640 miles of mainline Mississippi River levees

NEW ORLEANS DISTRICT Memphis District (901) 544-3005 MemphisPAO@usace.army.mil

VICKSBURG DISTRICT Founded in 1873, the Vicksburg District encompasses 68,000 square miles in Mississippi, Louisiana, and Arkansas. Seven major river basins fall under its jurisdiction, including the Mississippi, Red, Ouachita, Pearl, and Yazoo rivers. The district employs approximately 1,100 professionals in its district headquarters and 11 field offices. • 3 hydropower projects • 7 drainage basins • 9 lakes, with 1,709 miles of shoreline • 12 locks and dams • 21 pumping plants • 478 flood control structures • 246 recreation areas, with 4,002 campsites and 1,846 picnic sites • 1,808 miles of levees, including 468 along the Mississippi River • 1,252 miles of navigable channel

The New Orleans District encompasses 30,000 square miles in Louisiana. The district employs approximately 1,000 professionals at 33 sites within its area of operation. • 5 of the nation’s 15 busiest ports • 14 recreation areas, with 30 campsites and 20 picnic sites • 15 pumping plants • 18 locks and control structures • 325 miles of hurricane risk reduction levees • 973 miles of MR&T levees • 2,800 miles of navigable waterway • 8,000 annual regulatory actions New Orleans District (504) 862-2201 askthecorps@usace.army.mil


Vicksburg District (601) 631-5000 or (800) 522-5672 CEMVK-PA@usace.army.mil

MISSISSIPPI VALLEY DIVISION/MISSISSIPPI RIVER COMMISSION P.O. Box 80, Vicksburg, MS 39181 (601) 634-7729 www.mvd.usace.army.mil/ www.facebook.com/mississippivalleydivision/ twitter.com/MVD_USACE www.facebook.com/mississippirivercommission twitter.com/msrivercomm

ST. LOUIS DISTRICT 1222 Spruce Street, St. Louis, MO 63103 (314) 331-8000 www.mvs.usace.army.mil/ www.facebook.com/teamsaintlouis twitter.com/teamsaintlouis www.flickr.com/photos/usacestlouis www.youtube.com/user/TeamSaintLouis plus.google.com/+TeamSaintLouisUSACE

ST. PAUL DISTRICT 180 5th St. East, Suite 700, St. Paul, MN 55101-1678 (651) 290-5807 www.mvp.usace.army.mil/ www.facebook.com/usace.saintpaul twitter.com/StPaulUSACE www.flickr.com/photos/usace-stpaul/ www.youtube.com/user/usacemvppao www.instagram.com/stpaulusace/

MEMPHIS DISTRICT 167 N. Main Street, Room B-202, Memphis, TN 38103-1894 (901) 544-3005 www.mvm.usace.army.mil/ www.facebook.com/MemphisUSACE twitter.com/MemphisDistrict www.youtube.com/user/MemphisDistrictCorps

ROCK ISLAND DISTRICT (CEMVR-CC) Clock Tower Building P.O. Box 2004, Rock Island, IL 61204-2004 (800) 799-8302 or (309) 794-4200 www.mvr.usace.army.mil/ www.facebook.com/RockIslandDistrictUSACE twitter.com/USACERockIsland www.youtube.com/channel/ UCjhw-jbFajkJTGCDDlXCZ3Q usacerockisland.mobapp.at/landing/Desktop#. WW90zjYUmAY

VICKSBURG DISTRICT 4155 East Clay St., Vicksburg, MS 39183-3435 (601) 631-5000 www.mvk.usace.army.mil/ www.facebook.com/VicksburgUSACE www.youtube.com/user/mvkpaoguy http://www.twitter.com/usaceVicksburg NEW ORLEANS DISTRICT P.O. Box 60267, New Orleans, LA 70160-0267 (504) 862-2201 www.mvn.usace.army.mil/ www.facebook.com/usacenola twitter.com/teamneworleans www.flickr.com/photos/teamneworleans www.youtube.com/user/teamneworleans





ver the past century, the Memphis District team has worked to keep its portion of the Mississippi River from Cairo, Illinois, to the mouth of the White River within its banks and in a condition to best serve our nation’s commerce and transportation needs. We’ve helped protect you and your loved ones, your homes, the region’s infrastructure and kept life-sustaining services safe from destructive floodwaters. Working with our partners, who are your local flood control districts, levee boards, and municipalities; we’ve delivered innovative and cost-efficient projects that have enhanced the quality of life in the region. And we’ve been responsible environmental stewards while accomplishing it all. You might be thinking, “That sounds great, but what does it mean to me? How does it affect my daily life?” The answer to these questions might surprise you. Here are five ways our work touches your daily life that you may not know about.

1. YOUR GROCERY BILL ISN’T AS EXPENSIVE AS IT COULD BE. Many of the items you buy at your local grocery store contain raw ingredients like grain and corn that are transported to food manufacturers by barge on the Mississippi River. Shipping these ingredients to manufacturers on the river by barge is significantly less expensive than shipping them by train or truck. Transportation costs increase the price you pay for products at the grocery store. We may be talking pennies per item, but when you consider the number of products that contain grain and corn, those pennies add up at the cash register. An important part of the Memphis District’s mission is keeping the Mississippi River channel at a depth that allows the river barge 44

industry to dependably transport commodities like grain and corn on the river. The district does this by dredging – removing sediment from the bed of the river channel – and designing and constructing channel improvement structures like dikes, which help maintain a proper channel depth for barge traffic. Our river channel improvement mission and your grocery bill, on the surface, seem like strange bedfellows, but in reality they’re well acquainted.

2. YOUR MORNING COMMUTE IS LESS OF A HASSLE. The U.S Army Corps of Engineers’ (USACE) efforts to maintain a reliable and safe Mississippi River channel for barge transportation eliminates the need for millions of semi-truck delivery trips annually. This has a positive impact on our commute times, accident rates, infrastructure maintenance costs, energy consumption, fuel emissions, and stress level. Revetments, dikes, and other channel improvement measures USACE employs work together to help provide a reliable and safe river channel for barge traffic. This reduces the number of semi-truck trips annually, and helps to make your commute quicker, easier, and safer.

3. YOUR ELECTRIC BILL IS LOWER WITH HELP FROM USACE. Coal is one of the main fuels used by power plants to produce your home’s electricity. Coal is the largest commodity transported on the river. The cost of transporting coal to power plants is considerably cheaper by river than by rail or highway. The lower cost of transportation helps keep the cost of producing electricity for your home lower, which translates into lower electric bills.



These graphics depict the Memphis District’s contributions to the nation and the economy.

USACE’s bank stabilization efforts, called revetment, help provide a reliable and safe river channel for barges to transport coal. Revetment crews place squares of concrete called articulated concrete mattresses along the river banks to help stabilize the banks and help maintain favorable navigation conditions. These efforts help minimize the cost to transport coal to power plants, which provides a trickle-down cost savings on your electric bill.

4. HEAVY RAINS ARE LESS OF A CONCERN. When heavy rains come, all that water has to go somewhere. Being able to control where it goes is a capability ensured by USACE’s Inspection of Completed Works Team. This team performs inspections that help ensure the system of flood risk management structures, designed to keep floodwaters away, work properly when needed. This system includes levees, floodwalls, floodgates, culverts, and pumping plants that all work together to keep your community safe during heavy rains. This means you encounter fewer flood-related events.

5. A BREATH OF FRESH AIR. Eliminating the need for millions of semi-truck delivery trips a year also means lower levels of exhaust emissions. Fewer emissions

means fresher, healthier air to breathe. USACE helps make this possible by providing a reliable and safe river channel for barge traffic as an alternative method of transporting large quantities of commodities. River barge transportation consumes less energy and produces less exhaust emissions than truck engines. And most river channel traffic takes place away from population centers, which also helps reduce exhaust emissions. USACE works to help keep you safe from damaging floodwaters, your utilities less costly, your commutes safer, and your air a little fresher. USACE’s actions often go unnoticed, but the impacts are quite noticeable. Now you know about some of the things we do and how the people of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Memphis District add value to your daily life. n 45

Great nations are built by great people. The highly skilled members of the International Union of Operating Engineers build and maintain some of the most iconic structures in North America.

Operating Engineers i n t e r n at i o n a l

union of


Supporting our veterans




Pictured from left to right in uniform, Afghanistan District Project Manager Marshand Whittington (Baltimore District) and Deputy Chief for Programs and Project Management Lawrence Thomas (Memphis District) join Afghan nationals for a project site visit to Kandahar Air Field.

BY JAMES T. POGUE, Memphis District


rom their offices in Memphis, Tennessee, engineers with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) provide enterprise support to other divisions and districts needing solutions to their engineering challenges. Memphis District provides engineering services that include planning, engineering design, cost engineering, and construction management to USACE organizations with overseas missions. The work is done through a process called “reachback engineering,” and Memphis District dubs these faraway challenges “making global local.” The Memphis District’s reachback engineering capability allows Department of Defense personnel deployed around the world to tap

into the expertise and knowledge of engineers and other subject-matter experts back in the United States. With this capability, the district creates a value chain delivering lean, efficient, and progressive solutions for complex engineering challenges that are difficult to achieve at a deployed location with limited expertise and resources. The best example of this is the support the district provides to USACE teams working in Iraq and Afghanistan, said Donny Davidson, Memphis District’s chief of Engineering and Construction. The district is now a partner with the USACE Transatlantic Division (TAD) for several projects in the U.S. Central Command area of operations, particularly in Iraq and Afghanistan, and it has assisted others such as the 395th Engineer Detachment, Forward Engineering Support 47



From a conference room in the Memphis District, team members confer with colleagues in Afghanistan via telephone to discuss engineering challenges.

Team-Advanced. Past projects include cost engineering support for Afghan National Police projects and technical support to the Mekong River Commission. Drawing from experience he gained while deployed to Iraq, Davidson and others are developing and refining this reachback capability using a regional approach. “I returned from a deployment to Iraq in June 2017,” Davidson said. “Based on my experiences there activating Task Force Essayons (in Iraq), and previous attempts to use reachback engineering, we began working on an overseas contingency operations [OCO] reachback model that included both accountability and flexibility to better serve our deployed personnel. Lawrence Thomas, Afghanistan District’s deputy chief of Programs and Project Management, and Memphis District OCO managers Matt Turner and Jordan Bledsoe were key in this initiative. “We stood up the Mississippi Valley Division OCO initiative to enhance delivery and support to our deployed USACE teams,” Davidson continued. “We built a business plan based on what was needed by our people overseas. These included dedicated resourcing, accountability, flexible schedules, and the ability to deploy to the overseas location, as needed.” Davidson said he and the other authors of the initiative created and activated three fully disciplined and dedicated regional engineering teams with past vertical, OCO, or military construction expertise. These teams can provide turnkey projects that are ready for immediate construction. 48

Gregory Taylor, TAD’s Engineering and Technical chief, said the initiative provides a critical surge capability for projects required quickly. “Memphis District has deployable teams trained and ready to respond immediately to engineering needs in support of contingency operations,” Taylor said. “Whether the need is value engineering, design services, or design charrettes, Memphis teams are providing valuable enterprise support for our missions in Iraq and Afghanistan.” Roger Vogler, who served as chief of engineering in Afghanistan District for the past year and is now serving in the same role in the Middle East District, explained that TAD’s business model for contingency districts is to have minimal staff forward deployed and maximize the level of support provided by reachback personnel throughout the U.S.-based districts. This results in Afghanistan District’s Engineering Branch having a staff of only five engineers. Therefore, half or more of all the district’s projects with engineering effort must be provided by U.S. district engineering staff. Vogler said, “Fortunately, USACE districts such as Memphis have been available and willing to provide this necessary technical support. The U.S. and coalition construction missions in Afghanistan would not be possible without this reachback capability.” “Reports I’ve received from the leadership at the Transatlantic Division, the Afghanistan District and Task Force Essayons have been very positive,” Davidson said. “They are pleased with results and that’s good news since the buck stops with me.” Emilija Kolevski, the current chief of Engineering and Technical Services in the Afghanistan District, said the Memphis District deployable teams have the unique opportunity to gain invaluable experience and training that can only be gained forward and will have long-term benefits for USACE in Afghanistan. The district’s reachback engineering capabilities have supported projects in Afghanistan such as the construction and commissioning of an Afghan National Army wing in Kabul; aviation enhancements for



the Afghan air force in Kandahar; a compound at Mazar-e Sharif, and the presidential air wing in Kabul, Afghanistan. Additionally, a team of five engineers recently deployed to Kandahar, Afghanistan, to directly support the Afghanistan District. The district is currently supporting projects such as a training facility in Lanhman Province, Afghanistan; review of architect-engineer and construction submittals and requests for information for a variety of projects managed by Task Force Essayons; supporting contracting activities of the Afghanistan District; and preparing reports with a rough order of magnitude regarding the cost of making critical repairs. The Memphis District team of reachback engineers can travel to areas like Afghanistan and Iraq for 10- to 15-day intervals to see projects firsthand and meet with the personnel they are supporting. Memphis District civil engineer Michael Lamport is a member of the team and recently returned from Afghanistan. “Deploying to Afghanistan was an adventure!” Lamport said. “It was a great opportunity to see and experience what our deployed engineers do and how they live and work. This trip gave me a better understanding of what the needs are for design and engineering projects in OCONUS [outside the continental United States] theaters, how projects need to be designed, how the Corps of Engineers interacts with Afghan citizens who assist the Afghanistan District with carrying out their projects, and how the projects aid our country’s national security efforts.”

Pictured clockwise from bottom left, Shane Boehmer, Neal Newman, Michael Lamport (all from the Memphis District), Mandy Yeomans (St. Louis District), and Daphlyn Koester (Memphis District) prepare to leave for an on-site visit to USACE projects in Afghanistan with which they were assisting.

Mandy Yeomans, an engineer working in USACE’s St. Louis District, is also on this team. “The trip to Afghanistan was a great experience!” Yeomans said. “It was important to be able to meet those we have been supporting as well as see the projects in person rather than photos. After the trip, I am better able to understand how projects are completed OCONUS and how to provide a better end product to support those who are deployed.” Davidson said the reachback team is now working on a memorandum of understanding for support to TAD that will provide more predictability as to how the division plans and resources their work. “We’re always looking for new ways to effectively use reachback to meet the engineering challenges and opportunities the Corps tackles every day around the world,” he said. Joan Kibler, Transatlantic Division public affairs officer, contributed to this story. n 49




n Aug. 29, 2005, Hurricane Katrina made landfall in Buras, Louisiana, about 1 hour south of New Orleans. Katrina was moving with Category 5 strength less than 12 hours prior to landfall, and the storm generated a 28-foot storm surge and 55-foot waves. The damage incurred by the storm was unprecedented. Approximately 80 percent of New Orleans was flooded to depths exceeding 15 feet in many areas. Surge and waves caused 50 major levee breaches in the regional storm defense system. Thirty-four of the city’s 71 pumping stations were damaged, and 169 of the system’s 350 miles of protective structures were compromised. Also contributing to the flooding was heavy rainfall – 14 inches in a 24-hour period. More than 1,500 lives were lost. According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Katrina is the costliest disaster ever to occur in the United States. In the wake of the storm, Congress fully authorized and funded the Hurricane and Storm Damage Risk Reduction System (HSDRRS) for southeast Louisiana. The $14.6 billion HSDRRS incorporates five parishes and consists of 350 miles of levees and floodwalls, 73 nonfederal pumping stations, three canal closure structures with pumps, and four gated outlets. In May 2018, USACE completed the last major project of the HSDRRS, the Permanent Canal Closures and Pumps (PCCP) on the outfall canals, however, continues work like levee armoring along the Lake Pontchartrain to continue to add resilience to the system. All the work completed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) since 2006 has only been able to be accomplished through state, local, and federal partnerships.

PCCP The three main outfall canals in New Orleans are a critical element of the flood control system, serving as drainage conduits for much of the city. The canals run south to north near the Orleans Parish lakefront between the Jefferson Parish line and the Inner Harbor Navigation Canal (IHNC) with floodwall-topped levees lining each canal. USACE awarded the approximately $700 million contract to construct the PCCP at the mouths of the 17th Street, Orleans Avenue, and London Avenue outfall canals in April 2013, to PCCP Constructors Joint Venture. The project was completed and turned over to the local sponsor in May 2018. The PCCP is composed of permanent-gated storm surge barriers and brick façade pump stations on Lake Pontchartrain. The pumps move rainwater out of the canals, around the gates and into the lake 50

during tropical weather events, and are equipped with stand-alone emergency power supply capacity to operate independently of any publically provided utility. The PCCP at 17th Street consists of six 1,800-cubic-feet-per-second (cfs) pumps and two 900 cfs pumps, and has a total pumping capacity of 12,600 cfs; the PCCP at Orleans Avenue consists of three 900 cfs pumps and has a total pumping capacity of 2,700 cfs; and the PCCP at London Avenue consists of four 1,800 cfs pumps, two 900 cfs pumps, and has a total pumping capacity of 9,000 cfs. The PCCP replaced the Interim Closure Structures (ICS), which were constructed in 2006 immediately after Hurricane Katrina, as a permanent and more sustainable measure for reducing the risk of a 100-year-level storm surge entering the outfall canals. The ICS are no longer in use and removal is scheduled to begin in late 2018.

PROJECT FEATURES The PCCP sites were the last of three major projects under the HSDRRS program following the West Closure Complex and the Inner Harbor Navigation Canal surge barrier. The West Closure Complex was completed in 2014 and consists of a navigable floodgate, a pumping station, floodwalls, water control structures, foreshore protection, and an earthen levee. This risk-reduction feature is located approximately one-half mile south of the confluence of the Harvey and Algiers canals on the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway and is considered to be one of the largest pump stations in the world. Constructing the complex at this location eliminates 26 miles of levees and floodwalls parallel to the canals from the west bank’s perimeter risk-reduction system and allows the Harvey and Algiers canals to serve as a detention basin for rainwater draining from the three parishes. The total construction value for the West Closure Complex is an estimated $1 billion. The other major project of HSDRRS was the Inner Harbor Navigation Canal surge barrier, which was completed in 2013. The concrete barrier wall stretches for 1.8 miles across the Mississippi River Gulf Outlet and the Golden Triangle Marsh. It also consists of a bypass barge gate and a flood control sector gate (each 150-feet wide) at the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway and a 56-foot wide vertical lift gate at Bayou Bienvenue. The surge barrier has floodwall tie-ins to the New Orleans East risk-reduction system on the north end and the St. Bernard risk-reduction system on the south end. The entire structure is at an elevation of 25 and 26 feet above sea level. The total construction value for the Inner Harbor Navigation Canal-Lake Borgne surge barrier is an estimated $1.1 billion.



REMAINING WORK Although the major projects of HSDRRS have been completed, there is still work to be done on the system to add resiliency. The New Orleans District is continuing to improve the system by armoring earthen levees. The most common and important form of armoring on earthen levees is sod. Some additional armoring examples include rip-rap (large stones), turf-reinforced mats, and concrete slabs. In some repaired areas, rip-rap armoring has been reinforced with grout to lock the large stones in place and solidify the protective layer. Critical areas for scour protection include transition points where levees and floodwalls abut; where pipelines cross levee alignments; at floodwalls, particularly in densely populated areas; and where levees are directly exposed to large sections of open water (e.g., the New Orleans East and St. Bernard levees adjacent to Lake Borgne that suffered massive damage during Hurricane Katrina). Working with local sponsors, the district has completed seven levee lifts and armoring projects and 16 additional reaches are scheduled to be completed in 2020. In addition to armoring, the district has to complete the mitigation of the HSDRRS. USACE made a concerted effort to avoid and minimize environmental impacts to the maximum extent practical. When habitat losses occur, USACE offsets such losses through compensatory environmental mitigation. Compensatory environmental mitigation is an important part of HSDRRS construction and could include habitat restoration or enhancement.

A test at the West Closure Complex (WCC) shows the pumping capacity of the station. Built on the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway, the WCC removes 26 miles of floodwalls and levees parallel to the canals from the west bank’s perimeter risk-reduction system and allows the Harvey and Algiers canals to serve as a detention basin for rainwater.

The HSDRRS mitigation project team has evaluated more than 400 potential mitigation features in cooperation with environmental resource agencies and the nonfederal sponsor and has identified a tentatively selected plan. Currently, the plan will compensate for four habitat categories impacted during development of the risk-reduction system: wet and dry bottomland hardwood forests, swamps, and marshlands. All mitigation is expected to be completed in 2020.

SELA The Southeast Louisiana Urban Flood Control Project (SELA) is an internal drainage project that works with the HSDRRS to reduce the risk of flooding to Orleans, Jefferson, and St. Tammany parishes from rainfall events. SELA supports each parish’s master plan and works to reduce risk up to a level associated with a 10-year event, which equates to approximately 9 inches of rain over a 24-hour period. SELA works by removing rain water off of streets faster and storing it in underground or open culverts until pump stations can catch up 51

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to rainfall amounts. Work includes improvement to or construction of new pumping stations and construction of underground or open canals. SELA was authorized by Congress after devastating rainfall flooding to the Greater New Orleans Area between 1978 and 1995. During this 17-year period, FEMA paid more than $814 million in damage claims in Jefferson, Orleans, and St. Tammany parishes. SELA was made more difficult because, for the first time, USACE’s work was taking place in the middle of communities and busy thoroughfares. Construction took place in the front of homes, businesses, and schools and on busy streets in places like historic Uptown New Orleans and New Orleans East. Utility relocations caused water and power outages that had to be coordinated with residents, schools, businesses, and city officials. Culverts being built in the median of major roadways meant traffic disruptions for months or sometimes years. Additionally, the work had to be coordinated as to not interfere with economic engines for the city of New Orleans, like the Port of New Orleans, railroads, and Mardi Gras. All funded work in Jefferson Parish was complete as of 2018. Work in Jefferson Parish included 59 contracts at $943 million. Funded work in Orleans Parish is currently scheduled to be complete in 2021

at an estimated cost of $1.6 billion. Of the 20 funded projects, 16 are complete and four are under construction. There is additional work in Orleans, Jefferson, and St. Tammany parishes that is not yet funded.

LOOKING AHEAD The geographic location of New Orleans makes for a unique set of challenges. The city faces annual high-water events on the Mississippi River, a high probability annually of a tropical event, the potential threat for a rainfall flooding event, land subsidence, and sea-level rise. The area, however, is a national economic driver. Millions of dollars of goods are transported daily through the city along the Mississippi River and Gulf Intracoastal Waterway and the region is the site of large-scale petro/chemical infrastructure. The major features of HSDRRS have been completed and the New Orleans District continues to close out remaining work, but the system is not complete. As the nation continues to invest in risk reduction for south Louisiana, the area’s commerce continues to grow, which means the HSDRRS will become more critical over time. The Army Corps of Engineers needs to continually work with local sponsors to maintain the 100-year level of risk reduction for the city of New Orleans and look for new ways to reduce risk. n



or more than 30 years, the Upper Mississippi River Restoration (UMRR) program has been leading the nation in large river ecosystem restoration and science monitoring efforts on the upper Mississippi River system using a unique partnership that employs innovative techniques and sustainable solutions for habitat rehabilitation. Authorized by the Water Resources Development Act of 1986, the UMRR program was the first federal program to combine ecosystem restoration and scientific monitoring and research on a large river system in the United States and has since been recognized for its ability to ensure the viability and vitality of the natural resources found on the upper Mississippi River system. With more than 70 habitat rehabilitation and enhancement projects in the planning, construction, or completed stages of the program, nearly 106,000 acres of critical fish and wildlife habitat has been restored across the upper Midwest and thousands more are in the process. “What makes this program so unique, is the partnership that makes it possible,” said Marshall Plumley, UMRR program manager. “Without our partners, much of the habitat that has been restored through this program would never have been available to the Corps for restoration,

nor would we have the continued funding to support the operations of the projects in years to come.” Implementation of all aspects of the UMRR program are coordinated through a partnership that includes the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, U.S. Geological Survey, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the states of Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, and Wisconsin. Congress charged the Upper Mississippi River Basin Association (UMRBA) with facilitating the federal-state interagency consultation. The partnership also includes numerous non-governmental organizations as well as private citizens. “As early as the late 1970s, Congress realized that the complexity of the upper Mississippi River system required thoughtful, collaborative management, and that there was a general lack of knowledge limiting solutions,” said Kirsten Wallace, UMRBA executive director. “Following regional recommendations for multipurpose management of the river, Congress authorized an environmental restoration and long-term monitoring program that would be implemented through the interagency and interdisciplinary partnership that we have today with the UMRR program.” 53



In addition to the restoration and enhancement capabilities of the program, UMRR integrates long-term monitoring, research, modeling, and data management to provide critical knowledge to the partners involved who can in turn use this information to ensure the future health and resilience of the upper Mississippi River system. The mission of the long-term resource monitoring element is to provide decision-makers with information to maintain the upper Mississippi River system’s overall health and resilience by improving the understanding of the system, determining resource trends and impacts, managing information, and assisting in the development of management alternatives. “One of the goals of our long-term resource monitoring effort is to gain knowledge from the programs’ completed projects effect on

Project Manager Julie Millhollin talks about features of the Pool 12 Overwintering Habitat Rehabilitation and Enhancement Project with Upper Mississippi River Restoration Program partners during a site visit. The Pool 12 project is currently in the construction phase and is scheduled for completion in fall 2019.

the ecosystem and use this information to improve how we plan and design new projects,” said Plumley. “This two-part process allows the UMRR program to continue to create innovative methods for habitat restoration and make educated design decisions for future projects to reduce costs for long-term operation and maintenance.” For more information about the UMRR program, visit: go.usa.gov/Tw6z n



ne of the biggest challenges facing the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Rock Island District is aging navigation infrastructure and nowhere is that challenge more concerning than at the LaGrange Lock and Dam project located on the Illinois Waterway near Beardstown, Illinois. “LaGrange Lock has been our district’s top maintenance priority for quite some time,” said Thomas Heinold, Rock Island District chief of operations. “Parts of the lock are in various states of increased


degradation and it is the most heavily used lock of our district’s 20 lock projects.” The fiscal year 2018 Work Plan, released by USACE in June, included $10 million in new start construction funding so that major rehabilitation of the LaGrange Lock could be initiated. This was the only new start construction funding included in the work plan for the Mississippi Valley Division and was welcome news to one Rock Island District employee in particular.


reinvestment which would be akin to purchasing a new car or, in the case of the navigation system, building new locks.” LaGrange has been in need of the second leg of the stool – major rehabilitation – for quite some time. Andrew Goodall, Rock Island District project engineer for the LaGrange Major Rehabilitation/ Major Maintenance project, said the district is poised to execute the long-awaited funding. “The project will completely overhaul the lock and its components to increase the reliability and decrease the unscheduled outages due to unforeseen maintenance issues,” Goodall said. “Included in the rehabilitation are new miter gate and tainter value operating equipment, new lock controls, and the re-facing of all lock concrete utilizing precast concrete panels and cast-in-place concrete.” Goodall said a construction contract solicitation was initiated in August with an award date of late fiscal year 2018 or early fiscal year 2019. The project is anticipated to cost between $50 million and $100 million. Construction on the LaGrange Lock and Dam major rehabilitation project should start in spring 2019. n

LaGrange Lock and Dam, on the Illinois Waterway, is the Rock Island District’s most heavily used lock project. The aging infrastructure at the lock has been the district’s No. 1 maintenance priority.


“This lock needs a lot of attention,” said Bill Cross, lockmaster at LaGrange, who has been at the project for nearly 30 years. “My crew takes great pride in keeping this project operational,” Cross said, “but there comes a point in time where we are essentially just placing Band-Aids on problems that need greater fixes. That’s why this funding is so critical so that we can start the long-awaited major rehabilitation.” LaGrange is a key navigation structure as it is the last lock and dam before the Illinois Waterway converges with the Mississippi River, connecting navigation from the Great Lakes to the Gulf of Mexico. Annually, the LaGrange Lock operations allow more than $30 million in a wide variety of commodities to continue a journey up or down river – a journey that fuels a national and global economy. Like most locks on the upper Mississippi River system, LaGrange Lock was constructed in the 1930s with an intended design lifespan of about 50 years. According to Heinold, LaGrange Lock and Dam and all lock projects on the upper Mississippi River system, require various stages of maintenance in order to keep the system sustainable and efficient. He described a “three-legged stool” to depict the needs of aging infrastructure. “One leg is your routine maintenance, which if you think of car ownership, routine maintenance would be changing the oil and spark plugs,” Heinold said. “The second leg is major maintenance and rehabilitation. Again, using a car ownership analogy, this leg would be major overhauls like engine replacement. The third leg is major capital


NORTH ATLANTIC DIVISION BY THE NUMBERS • Serves as the Department of Defense’s engineering, design, and construction agent for 50 Army and 13 Air Force installations east of the Appalachian Mountains in the northeast United States, Europe, and Greenland. • Maintains five major harbors: Boston, New York-New Jersey, Philadelphia, Baltimore, and Norfolk – and more than 200 smaller ports in the northeast United States. • Maintains and operates four canals that make up parts of the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway. The Chesapeake and Delaware Canal across the top of the Delmarva Peninsula shortens the distance by water between Baltimore and Philadelphia by 300 miles.

BALTIMORE DISTRICT 2 Hopkins Plaza Baltimore, MD 21201 (800) 434-0988 cenab-cc@usace.army.mil www.nab.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/ USACEBaltimore twitter.com/USACEBaltimore www.youtube.com/ channel/ UC4Jlz4AkQaXgxMghDnOAr4/ www.flickr.com/photos/ corps_of_engineers_baltimore EUROPE DISTRICT CMR 410, Box 1 APO AE 09049 +49 (0) 611-9744-2703 dll-cenau-pa@usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/ europedistrict twitter.com/europedistrict www.youtube.com/user/ usaceEuropeDistrict www.flickr.com/photos/ europedistrict


The North Atlantic Division’s area of operations includes: • 23 percent of U.S. population (72 million) • 25.6 percent of U.S. coastal tonnage • 3,300 employees • 2,685 miles of navigation channels • More than 650 miles of levees/channels • 54 dams • 22 storm and hurricane barriers • 8 high-level bridges

NEW ENGLAND DISTRICT Public Affairs Office 696 Virginia Rd. Concord, MA 01742 (978) 318-8238 cenae-pa@usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/ CorpsNewEngland twitter.com/CorpsNewEngland www.flickr.com/photos/ corpsnewengland/ NEW YORK DISTRICT 26 Federal Plaza, Rm. 2113 New York, NY 10278 (917) 790-8007 Cenan-pa@usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/ USACE.NewYorkDistrict/ twitter.com/USACE_NY www.youtube.com/user/ USACENewYorkDistrict www.flickr.com/photos/ newyorkdistrict-usace

NORFOLK DISTRICT U.S. Army Corps of Engineers 803 Front St. Norfolk, VA 23510 757-201-7500 dll-cenao-pa@usace.army.mil https://www.facebook.com/NAOonFB https://twitter.com/norfolkdistrict https://www.flickr.com/photos/ armyengineersnorfolk PHILADELPHIA DISTRICT The Wanamaker Building 100 Penn Square East Philadelphia, PA 19107-3390 DLL-CENAP-PA@usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/ PhillyDistrict/ www.youtube.com/user/ USACEPhillyDistrict www.flickr.com/photos/ philadelphiausace




The Sturgis project team, pictured in front of the vessel, gathered to celebrate the completion of the vessel’s decommissioning activities during a ceremony aboard the Sturgis in Galveston, Texas, on June 12, 2018. The ceremony included U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Chief of the Environmental Division Karen Baker, then-Baltimore District Commander Col. Ed Chamberlayne, Galveston District Commander Col. Lars Zetterstrom, and members of the project team from both districts, contractors, and other USACE offices that supported the one-of-a-kind effort.

BY CHRIS GARDNER, Baltimore District


he U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) team has recently completed a very complex and unique project phase by finishing the decommissioning of the U.S. Army’s first-and-only floating nuclear reactor prototype – the MH-1A aboard the nuclear barge Sturgis. Led by the Corps of Engineers’ Baltimore District’s Radiological Center of Expertise and carried out in close coordination with the Galveston District, plus contractors on site, crews have worked tirelessly for the last three years to access the radioactive components of the nuclear reactor aboard the Sturgis and safely remove, transport, and dispose of them. In all, the project team has safely removed more than 1.5 million pounds of radioactive material and recycled more than 600,000 pounds of lead as part of the decommissioning. “The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers mission is engineering solutions for the nation’s toughest challenges and this team here really delivered on a solution to this unique challenge,” said Headquarters USACE Chief of the Environmental Division Karen

Baker, during a ceremony aboard the Sturgis to celebrate the milestone. The entire project was carried out with safety always in the forefront. “Safety has always been our No. 1 priority in carrying this project out,” said Baltimore District Project Manager Brenda Barber. “We were committed to ensuring the safety of the public and our crews, and I’m proud to say we completed our decommissioning work with no evidence of radioactive material, lead, or increased radiation exposure from the Sturgis being documented outside of the reactor containment area at any point during the project.” Sturgis’ unique story began as a Liberty Ship in World War II. After the war, the vessel was converted into the world’s first floating nuclear power plant in the 1960s. The Sturgis’ nuclear reactor, MH-1A, was used to generate electricity for military and civilian use in the Panama Canal for several years before being shut down in 1976. The reactor was then de-fueled, decontaminated for long-term storage, and sealed before being towed to the James River Reserve Fleet at Joint Base Langley Eustis, Virginia, for long-term storage and monitoring. 57



Detailed planning for the decommissioning effort formally began in 2012 and after years of preparation and coordination with partnering agencies, government officials, and other stakeholders, an environmental assessment of multiple potential sites for the decommissioning work was completed in 2014. After award of the decommissioning project contract, Sturgis was ultimately towed 1,750 nautical miles from Virginia to Galveston, Texas, in April 2015. “At first, there was a bit of anxiety among some members of the Galveston community when they heard that a nuclear reactor on a ship was being towed to their area,” Barber said. “That being said though, once we had the opportunity to provide additional information about the Sturgis and explain our processes and safety protocols, we’ve found the members of the Galveston community, local leadership, and the workforce to be wonderful partners in this process. I’d say the local support has been a big contributor to the success of this project.” After setting up the project site upon Sturgis’ arrival in April 2015, crews began the painstaking work of systematically taking apart portions of the vessel around the reactor. First, the team constructed two secure access hatches on its top deck to allow all of the waste to be removed safely. Then the team began to remove waste from the reactor containment area deck by deck. “When the Liberty Ship was converted into a floating nuclear reactor back in the 1960s, they never intended for it to be taken apart,” Barber said. “It was built to house a nuclear reactor with thick elements of steel, lead, and concrete barriers, which provided protection for the workers and the public during her operations.“ Despite these challenges, the first low-level radiological waste shipment occurred in October 2015 and shipments continued steadily as the project progressed. 58

The reactor pressure vessel aboard the Sturgis, the Army’s retired floating nuclear power plant recently decommissioned, is carefully lifted in order to be placed in the specially designed shielded shipping container to its left at the end of May 2017. Once in the container, it was then loaded onto a transport vehicle to be delivered to the Waste Control Specialists disposal facility, in Andrews County, Texas, for disposal. With the removal of the Sturgis’ reactor pressure vessel, approximately 98 percent of the radioactivity from the Sturgis and a total of 850,000 pounds of radioactive waste had been safely removed and disposed of at that time.

Executing the project on the water provided its own challenges as well. The project team coordinated with USACE’s Marine Design Center to make sure that their work in creating hatches for lifting reactor components off the vessel via dockside crane didn’t create structural issues for the floating vessel. The team also had to ensure the pier itself was able to handle critical lifts of packaged reactor components, weighing from 1 ton up to 80 tons. In early 2017, the team finished the painstaking efforts to section and remove pieces of the top of the reactor containment Vessel. This allowed for access to the main reactor components. Crews worked to steadily remove components including the steam generator, pressurizer, coolant pumps, refueling shield tank, ductwork, and the reactor head dolly to provide adequate access for the removal of the vessel’s reactor pressure vessel (RPV) – essentially the reactor core. This major milestone for the team was completed in May 2017 just prior to last year’s busy hurricane season. “The RPV is where the nuclear fuel was held when the MH-1A was active and was the primary source of remaining radioactivity on the Sturgis,” Barber said. “Its removal was a significant milestone for the



decommissioning effort and meant we had successfully and safely removed the vast majority of the radioactivity from the Sturgis.” The removal of the RPV was a complex operation, which involved securing the RPV into a custom-made shielded shipping container while it was still within the containment area of Sturgis, then lifting the roughly 80-ton RPV and shielded shipping container onto a transport vehicle. The RPV was then successfully transported to the Waste Control Specialists disposal facility, in Andrews County, Texas, for disposal. With the safe removal and transport of the RPV, the team had successfully removed approximately 98 percent of the Sturgis’ radioactivity. The removal of the remaining two percent of low-level radioactivity was the next challenge for the team. The majority of the remaining radioactivity was in the activated metals of the thick steel components of the large primary shield tank that provided shielding for the RPV when the reactor was operational and a portion of the bottom of the reactor containment vessel. The team finished the removal of these items by March 2018. One of the more arduous tasks that was part of the efforts was working in the vessel’s hull bottom tanks to conduct radiological surveys, remediate any contamination found, and then conduct additional surveys confirming the success of the remediation. To access the hull bottom tanks for surveying, radiological control technicians crawled into small, confined tanks through hatches anywhere from two to 30 feet into the vessel’s hull bottom via narrow 16-inch by 24-inch hatches. Once down the hatch, personnel then had to navigate through the 22 hull bottom tanks running along the bottom of the vessel, divided into hundreds of cells that are themselves broken into countless smaller compartments – all separated by the samesized hatches used to enter the tanks themselves. “Once you get down into the tanks, every 30 inches, to get from one compartment to another you have to crawl through another one

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Project Manager Brenda Barber speaks with local officials, first responders, and representatives from the U.S. Coast Guard and the Port of Galveston as part of a tour of the Sturgis June 9, 2015, in Galveston, Texas, soon after the vessel arrived there for its final decommissioning. USACE coordinated closely with local partners throughout the project – especially regarding safety. During the tour, USACE personnel explained the process of how the decommissioning of the barge would be completed, provided an overview of the site, and reviewed safety procedures.

of these tight hatches just like the one you had to work through, just to get into the hull bottom,” said radiological health physicist Hans Honerlah, the program manager for Baltimore District’s Radiological Center of Expertise. “You’re crawling in them with your tools, it’s hot, you’re wearing a respirator, and our crews have been living that effort for the past year or two of this project. That’s a hard job, but it speaks to the dedication our crews have when it comes to this project.” With the decommissioning work complete and all necessary radiological surveys showing no more radioactivity remaining on the vessel, all that remains for Sturgis is the final traditional shipbreaking after being towed to Brownsville, Texas. The remaining vessel and components will be recycled. USACE personnel executing the Army’s Deactivated Nuclear Power Plant Program are hoping to build upon the success of the Sturgis project as they work through the decommissioning planning phase for the Army’s two last remaining reactors in the program – the SM-1 at Fort Belvoir in Virginia and the SM-1A at Fort Greely in Alaska. “We’re proud of what we’ve accomplished with the Sturgis and how we were able to complete a complex and unique job and do it safely,” Barber said. “Successfully completing the decommissioning of the Sturgis is something the entire team is really proud of, but we can’t rest on our laurels, and now we’re shifting our focus to the next two reactors.” n 59


DODEA INVESTS IN SCHOOLS WITH USACE ASSISTANCE Europe District Manages Design, Construction, of More Than 30 DODEA Schools BY KIMBERLY WINTRICH, Europe District


any of the schools throughout the Department of Defense Education Activity-Europe (DODEA-Europe) are failing having been in use for 30-50 years. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Europe District has partnered with DODEA to provide high-quality engineering, construction, and general services to build 21st century learning environments for military-connected children. “Three things need to happen for education to take place: one the students have to show up ready to learn, teachers have to show up ready to teach, and the building has to be a [state-of-the-art facility],” said Brig. Gen. William Graham, commanding general of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers North Atlantic Division. Europe District manages the design and construction of more than 30 schools and facilities in current and future years valued at more than $1 billion throughout Germany and Belgium. The majority of these schools are located in Rheinland-Pfalz, which includes 11 schools and facilities valued at more than $600 million. The district also manages repair and renovation work and preventive maintenance contracts for school and playgrounds in Europe and the Middle East. The plan to renovate, and in most cases to replace the schools, started in fiscal year 2010 when DODEA planned to recapitalize about 50 percent of its structures and sought approximately $1.6 billion in initial military construction (MILCON) funds from Congress. The 10-year DODEA MILCON Program includes seven completed schools valued at $273 million, eight schools under construction valued at $522 million, and 11 schools and facilities currently in design valued at $507 million, totaling $1.3 billion. Recently, Europe District and DODEA along with the U.S. Air Force, the German Federal Office for Federal Construction (ABB), and the German regional construction office (LBB) broke ground on a future school. “At [Ramstein High School], we’re embarking on our own adventure. We are breaking ground on a new high school building that will not just be any old high school,” said student council president Amanda Daly, March 28. “The students of Ramstein will be in a state-of-the-art facility. Every advantage provided by our new school will be utilized by our wonderful faculty and students. The new building will be more than a backdrop for our learning; it will be an integral part of it.” “Today, we celebrate together the groundbreaking ceremony for Ramstein High School [RHS], which is the largest project managed by our office in our school program,” said Norbert Hoebel, head of LBB-Kaiserslautern office. “Ramstein High School is such a huge and


complex project that it has to be implemented in various construction phases.” The $98.8 million, three-story building with the capacity for 1,100 students will include eight learning neighborhoods, science laboratories, career and technical education (CTE) laboratories, JROTC classroom, gymnasium and other athletic support spaces, performance area with stage, and shared common spaces. As part of the 21st century educational facility design, a traditional school is transformed into a global classroom concept. The school building becomes a teaching tool with systems and building components exposed to provide real-world relevance and examples to reinforce the science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) curriculum. The 21st century school design provides student-centered facilities and the flexibility and adaptability will accommodate multiple learning modalities, which allows future changes as programs evolve and grow. “It’s truly magnificent when the building can be an active member of the education experience,” said Graham. “I want to thank you all for the collaborative partnership that’s going to deliver this magnificent facility.” The RHS project will include site improvements to include renovation of the existing stadium and football field, bus loading and unloading areas, parking, signage, and walkways. “The new school will be used as a tool. It will be a resource to enhance the learning that takes place within its walls,” said Sharon O’Donnell, Ramstein High School principal. “Collectively, the individuals in this room have dreamed, planned, designed, collaborated, and problem-solved. Through this process, we have a strong sense of teamwork and a purpose, which is to serve our students.” The schools will not only serve the students, but will also have sustainable and energy-saving concepts intended to save taxpayer dollars and to help preserve environmental resources for future generations. The features include low-flow plumbing, reducing water consumption and other energy-conservation measures. Ramstein High School is expected to be complete and in full use by fall 2021. “The benefits to our students will be unlimited,” said O’Donnell. “On behalf of the generations who will walk the halls of the brand-new Ramstein High School, I thank you for the importance you have placed on the leaders of tomorrow.” MILCON projects, carried out by Europe District, enhance the educational environment for more than 14,000 students across Europe.



USACE Europe District broke ground on Ramstein High School on March 28, 2018, with partners from Ramstein High School, the Department of Defense Education Activity Europe, the U.S. Air Force, the Federal Office for Federal Construction (ABB), and the German regional construction office (LBB).

These students represent the future of the nation, which makes the school projects quality investments that will have a lasting impact for decades to come. Department of Defense Education Activity provides the overall conceptual planning, programming, budgeting, and standards for all educational facilities. The DODEA facilities team provides project scope, direction, and funding to USACE to execute the design and construction of the schools and facilities in Europe. USACE’s Europe District leads the project delivery team comprised of DODEA, USACE, and German government representatives. The Army Garrison Directorate of Public Works and Air Force Base civil engineers also participate in project delivery efforts. The USACE Project Management Business Process (PMBP) is followed to manage all phases of project execution from initial planning, design, construction, turn-over, and close-out. The USACE Norfolk District serves as the DODEA Design Center, providing 21st century expertise and support during the design process. n

RAMSTEIN HIGH SCHOOL WILL INCLUDE: • Three-story school building for approximately 1,100 students; gross floor area approximately 21,500 square meters • Classrooms, large common rooms, one kitchen, administrative rooms, study gardens, with solar and wind power stations for demonstration purposes, and a gym • Stadium with a football field and an eight-track raceway • Five tennis courts, one basketball field • Bus station for 54 busses • Parking lots for automobiles, as well as roads, sidewalks, paved areas, and landscaping • A place for parents to drop off and pick up their children • Relocation of existing utility lines, exterior lighting, and the demolition of the existing utility facilities • New construction of a softball and a baseball field • Demolition of the old high school building





he Nature Conservancy and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), along with the University of Massachusetts Amherst, recently completed the multiyear Connecticut River Flow Restoration Study, which investigated dam operations and river flows for the 73 largest dams throughout the Connecticut River watershed in Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and Connecticut. The purpose of the study was to evaluate the feasibility of operational changes at large dams in the watershed to benefit ecological health and function while maintaining important services provided by dams, such as flood risk management, hydropower, water supply, and recreation. Various tools, such as operation and optimization computer models, were developed to assess current and potential future dam management scenarios. The report is available for review at nature.org/ctriverwatershed or www.nae.usace.army.mil/Missions/Projects-Topics/ Connecticut-River/. The Connecticut River watershed has more than 3,000 dams that have had significant affect on the watershed’s ecosystem, including its migratory fish, floodplain forests, and rare and endangered aquatic species like dwarf wedgemussel and puritan tiger beetle. These affects include alterations to the watershed’s natural hydrology, such as elimination of natural high-flow events that are important for transporting nutrients and sediments critical to healthy floodplain forests, and increases in short-term flow fluctuations that can significantly alter habitat for fish and aquatic invertebrates. The study examined ways in which the largest of these dams have contributed to the alteration of the natural pattern of water flow in the Connecticut River and its tributaries, and how the operation of these


dams might be modified to restore the health and function of the ecosystem in the future. In order to better understand the Connecticut River watershed’s pattern of water flow and identify ways to better manage its dams for human uses and ecological needs, USACE, The Nature Conservancy, and their partners interviewed stakeholder groups and dam owners and operators about river uses and needs and developed several basin-wide hydrologic models to support resource management and decision-making. These tools will be used to help decision-makers and other stakeholders understand the positive and negative environmental, economic, and social consequences of various management options. This will, in turn, help to determine how management of these dams can be modified for environmental benefits while maintaining beneficial human uses such as water supply, flood risk management, and hydropower generation. “This is an excellent example of the Corps of Engineers working with diverse partners and stakeholders to execute a successful study to benefit the region and the residents of Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Vermont,” said Col. William M. Conde, commander of the New England District. USACE operates 14 flood risk management dams in the basin. “This study gave our department the opportunity to use our depth of experience in water modeling to tackle the most complex modeling problems we’ve ever attempted. It also provided a wonderful learning platform for learning for dozens of master’s and doctoral students,” said Dr. Richard N. Palmer, department head and professor, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Massachusetts



Dams located on the Connecticut River will be studied under the Connecticut River Flow Restoration Study.

Amherst. “We were proud to be a partner and that we are hopeful that this study will be the foundation of potential re-management of the systems of reservoirs in the Connecticut basin in the future.” “The results of the study will provide water managers and natural resource experts with new tools to make difficult water allocation and management decisions pertaining to dam management,” said Katie Kennedy, applied river scientist with The Nature Conservancy’s

Connecticut River Program. “The Nature Conservancy will be using these tools to find science-based water management solutions that provide benefits for nature while continuing to provide the important services of existing infrastructure.” The Nature Conservancy is already using these tools to assist stakeholders in the current hydropower relicensing process underway in the Connecticut River watershed. In this case and elsewhere, 63



the tools developed for the study have potential to reduce conflict by helping water resource managers and stakeholders understand how water management decisions affect their objectives and the objectives of other parties, and to develop creative options for meeting multiple needs and uses of the river. n


A new study of dam operations and river flows in the four-state Connecticut River watershed could provide insights for dam operators and natural resource managers as they balance the multiple uses and needs of the watershed’s rivers.




Eisenhower Barracks is being renovated as part of the U.S. Military Academy West Point Cadet Barracks Upgrade Program. The sidewalk, or “Troop Walk,” facing the flat expansive area where the cadets march will be finished to match the sidewalk on the opposite side at MacArthur Long Barracks, thereby preserving the historic atmosphere of the area.

BY JOANNE CASTAGNA , New York District


wight D. Eisenhower and Gen. John J. Pershing served during World War I and achieved many great accomplishments. Pershing was the first American promoted by Congress to general of the Armies rank and Eisenhower would become the 34th president of the United States. Today, their paths are crossing again in a way. Their alma mater – the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York – is modernizing barracks named after each man to better prepare the military leaders of the future. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers New York District is currently executing the West Point Cadet Barracks Upgrade Program

– modernizing nine existing barracks and supporting facilities to enhance the learning experience for more than 4,000 cadets. “Renovating the cadet barracks at West Point is hugely rewarding for the entire USACE team, something the Corps’ been doing at the Academy since 1802,” said Christopher D. Reinhardt, chief, military programs, New York District.

IMPROVED ENERGY EFFICIENCY All of the buildings will be designed to achieve Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design® (LEED) Silver certification, saving taxpayer money. Energy-efficient features being used include high-efficiency, 65

NORTH ATL ANTIC DIVISION MODERNIZED LEARNING ENVIRONMENT Caitlin Slattery, project manager, New York District, who is managing the construction of both Pershing and Eisenhower Barracks said, “This renovation will benefit the cadets by providing contemporary living spaces with features that will simplify life for them and allow


low-flow plumbing fixtures that will reduce water use by more than 40 percent. The cadets will also have air conditioning provided by a chilled-water plant in the basement level of the newly constructed Davis Barracks via pipes extending from the site to the other nine barracks.

The renovation of Pershing Barracks includes a complete gutting and remodeling of the existing structure, and the floor plans are being optimized to utilize space in a more practical way. The inside of the structure is being modernized, but the exterior’s military gothic revival architecture is being maintained to blend with the rest of the 200-year-old campus. To maintain the building’s original granite exterior, the granite stones were repointed and the historic clock tower was refurbished.




for more time to focus on their daily activities, such as academics, athletics, and leadership exercises.” For example, in Pershing Barracks, to assist cadets with their academics, each cadet company will have study rooms or collaboration rooms that will allow them to meet in large numbers to work on group projects or participate in team building activities.

PRESERVED HISTORY The campus dates back to the American Revolution and is a U.S. National Historic Landmark, so preservation is important. While the interiors of the barracks are being modernized, the exterior’s military gothic revival architecture is being maintained in order to blend in with the rest of the historical structures on the 200-yearold campus.

Pershing Barracks under renovation as part of the U.S. Military Academy West Point Cadet Barracks Upgrade Program. Buildings being upgraded include Pershing, Eisenhower, Scott, Mac Short, Mac Long, Grant, Bradley, Lee, and Sherman Barracks.

“We feel a sense of accomplishment as many of these barracks are more than 100 years old and renovations will allow these structures to endure for many more years. It is almost as though we are part of the ongoing history of this institution and the ‘Long Grey Line’ of graduates,” Reinhardt said. The West Point Cadet Barracks Upgrade Program is ongoing and is expected to be fully completed by 2021. Pershing Barracks will be open to cadets in fall 2018 and Eisenhower Barracks, the following fall. n 67



he Northwestern Division (NWD) is affectionately known as the “Lewis and Clark Division,” in recognition of the region the famous expedition travelled through in 18051806, during its storied trek across the continent. The territory explored by Lewis and Clark remains awesome in its geographical breadth, and its economic, political, and cultural diversity. Nearly 2,000 miles wide, present-day NWD touches all or parts of 14 states, 48 congressional districts, and more than 90 sovereign tribal nations, making it the largest of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ (USACE) nine division offices. Two of the country’s longest rivers – the Missouri and Columbia – drain nearly 1 million square miles within its boundaries that stretch from Seattle to St. Louis. Its civil works, military, and environmental programs surpass $3 billion annually. The formation of the new Northwestern Division was a long time coming. In the early 1990s, USACE began to take a hard look at its missions, capabilities, customers, workforce, and funding projections. After lengthy study and review, Congress passed legislation reducing the number of division offices. For purposes of geographical balance, regional interface, and similarity of issues, the North Pacific and Missouri River divisions were officially realigned and combined into one division in April 1997. Division headquarters offices were located in Portland, Oregon, with a regional office in Omaha, Nebraska. NAD’s commander directs all USACE activities in this area by providing leadership and guidance for five subordinate district offices, each headed by a military officer and military deputy, located in Kansas City, Missouri; Omaha, Nebraska; Portland, Oregon; Seattle and Walla Walla, Washington. The division office also oversees the upward coordination of technical policy and NORTHWESTERN DIVISION P.O. Box 2870 Portland, OR 97208-2870 cenwd-pa@usace.army.mil (503) 808-3800 www.nwd.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/NWDUSACE www.twitter.com/NWDUSACE www.dvidshub.net/unit/usace-nwd KANSAS CITY DISTRICT 601 E. 12th St. Kansas City, MO 64106-2896 dll-nwk-pa@usace.army.mil (816) 389-2000 www.nwk.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/usace.kcd www.twitter.com/kc_usace


budgetary issues that cross district boundaries and interfaces with other federal and state agencies, congressional leaders, key stakeholders, and international commissions. The Northwestern Division, as all other USACE divisions, manages its districts’ civil works activities based on river basins rather than state boundaries. Its primary civil works missions encompass flood damage reduction, navigation, hydropower, fish and wildlife, water quality, irrigation, recreation, and disaster response. Within its jurisdiction are 77 dams and reservoirs, 29 hydropower plants, and 1,600 miles of navigable channels. Military boundaries, in contrast, are organized along state lines. Major military programs include providing design and construction support to 55 major Army and Air Force installations and dozens of smaller ones. The Northwestern Division also manages more than 2 million acres of military real estate for the Department of Defense. An Environmental, Interagency and International Services program provides environmental restoration and cleanup of hazardous, toxic, and radioactive sites for the military, Environmental Protection Agency, and other federal agencies. In recent years, NWD volunteers have stepped to the forefront in support military units in Iraq and Afghanistan, lending their skills to the reconstruction efforts. While USACE districts have civil works and military missions, they are frequently distinguished by the nature and amount of civil or military work they perform. The division’s districts that have a preponderance of military and environmental work are Kansas City, Omaha, and Seattle. The Portland and Walla Walla districts tend to have larger civil works programs. In all cases and from all quarters, the five NWD districts consistently achieve top marks for mission execution, customer satisfaction, and quality products.

OMAHA DISTRICT 1616 Capitol Ave. Omaha, NE 68102 Omaha.USACE-PA@usace.army.mil (402) 995-2417 www.nwo.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/OmahaUSACE www.twitter.com/OmahaUSACE www.youtube.com/OmahaUSACE www.flickr.com/OmahaUSACE PORTLAND DISTRICT P.O. Box 2946 Portland, OR 97208-2946 cenwp-pa@usace.army.mil (503) 808-4510 www.nwp.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/PortlandCorps www.twitter.com/PortlandCorps www.dvidshub.net/unit/USACE-NWP

SEATTLE DISTRICT P.O. Box 3755 Seattle, WA 98124 paoteam@nws02.usace.army.mil (206) 764-3750 www.nws.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/USACENWS/ www.twitter.com/seattledistrict WALLA WALLA DISTRICT 201 N. Third Ave. Walla Walla, WA 99362-1876 cenww-pa@usace.army.mil (509) 527-7020 www.nww.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/WallaWallaUSACE www.twitter.com/WallaWallaUSACE www.youtube.com/wallawallausace




BY EILEEN WILLIAMSON, Nor thwestern Division


he Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) hosted a landmark ribbon-cutting ceremony for the new Rocky Mountain Regional Medical Center in Aurora, Colorado, July 21, 2018. “We are very honored to be able to help, to be able to partner with [Veterans Affairs] to be able to get these critical facilities to take care of our service members,” Lt. Gen. Todd T. Semonite, 54th chief of engineers and commanding general of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, said previously about the project. Semonite participated in the ceremony along with Acting Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs Peter O’Rourke and members of Colorado’s congressional delegation. The new $1.67 billion, 1.2-million-square-foot medical center is comprised of 12 buildings and offers veterans a full-service medical facility to meet all of their medical requirements. It replaces an

The Rocky Mountain Regional Medical Center complex in Aurora, Colorado, consists of a research facility, a diagnostic treatment facility, two inpatient buildings, and two new clinic buildings, as well as renovation of a pre-existing clinic building. The long corridor of the concourse connects all the facility buildings, allowing veterans and medical center staff to travel across the campus without stepping outside into the elements.

older, dated VA medical center built in Denver in the 1950s and offers Colorado’s veterans state-of-the-art facilities. Within the new medical center, veterans have access to a spinal care injury center, research facilities, and a diagnostic treatment center. A contract to complete the project was awarded in October 2015 after an Interagency Agreement with the VA authorized USACE to 69

NORTHWESTERN DIVISION provide project management, construction management, engineering services, and other support to the VA in July 2015. Along with ongoing support to VA on its National Cemetery and Veterans Integrated Service Network projects, the VA also agreed to have USACE serve as its construction agent on several major medical facilities nationwide. The Rocky Mountain Regional Medical Center was the first project under that agreement. USACE’s Omaha District led the effort to complete the project. Across the country, USACE is building 15 different such facilities for the VA – three more within the Northwestern Division, projected at nearly $8 billion. The Seattle District is renovating three facilities with seismic corrections, an outpatient medical facility, and making improvements to traffic and parking at the campus at the American Lake Campus in Tacoma, Washington, under a multiyear three-phase project. The Portland District is providing seismic retrofits to two buildings and skywalks and will construct a specialty-care building at the VA Portland Medical Center in Portland, Oregon. At the VA Medical Center in Fort Harrison, Montana, the Omaha District recently kicked off a project to renovate and provide seismic corrections to several buildings. A new 80,000-square-foot building and parking structure are also part of the project. Additionally, USACE is building more than 30 different medical facilities for the Department of Defense (DOD). USACE is applying lessons learned to save time and money for these DOD facility projects, and to offer the highest-quality construction to those who serve. At Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri, the Kansas City District, under the Military Construction Program, will manage a project to replace the

General Leonard Wood Army Community Hospital. The project includes constructing a 242,631-square-foot hospital, a 198,769-square-foot outpatient clinic, alterations to the optical fabrication lab, ambulance garage, helipad, and support facilities including a central utility plant. Constructing hospitals and health care facilities isn’t new to the Northwestern Division. Other recent projects include the Elbowoods Memorial Health Center, which opened in October 2011 to serve the Fort Berthold Reservation in New Town, North Dakota; the Woods Soldier Family Care Center at Fort Carson, Colorado; and the Irwin Community Hospital at Fort Riley, Kansas. Andrea Rodriguez, USACE’s senior project manager for the Rocky Mountain Regional Medical Center, described the construction partnership between USACE and the VA as mutually beneficial – first for veterans and their families and second because the project allows USACE to bring its construction management expertise to a significant federal agency adding health care to its project management experience. The VA offers a variety of programs and services for the nation’s 22 million veterans and continues to emphasize three long-term goals: increasing access to VA benefits and services, reducing the claims backlog, and eliminating veterans’ homelessness. In addition, VA has placed renewed emphasis on rebuilding trust with America’s veterans, improving service delivery, and transforming the agency to empower veterans to more easily navigate VA and access their earned care and benefits. Mirroring USACE’s motto of “Building Strong,” Semonite said, “We are building VA strong, because that is what we need to do to take care of Colorado’s veterans!” n Capt. Ryan Hignight, Omaha District, contributed to this article.



he Kansas City District leaders and engineers are excited to move forward as the lead design and construction agent for the new $1.75 billion National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency West facility located in St. Louis, Missouri. The mission of the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) is to deliver world-class geospatial intelligence that provides a decisive advantage to policymakers, warfighters, intelligence professionals, and first responders. The new NGA West is the largest federal investment project in the history of St. Louis. It is a mega project jointly managed by the NGA, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), and U.S. Air Force. The 97-acre site will


feature a 712,000-square-foot office building, parking garages, visitor center, inspection facility, and access control points. It is projected to be a five-year construction effort, with estimates of as many as 1,300 construction workers on site during peak activity periods. The district established a St. Louis office to collaborate and provide full-service support throughout the design and construction of the next NGA West. The district will provide functions that include project management, engineering, contracting, and construction management – all on one team – matrixed with NGA’s functions: design and construction, integration and readiness, security, information technology, and



transformation and engagement. Both project management offices are led by USACE and NGA. Laurie Farmer, a Kansas City District project manager, has been with the program since its initial planning. “All organizations have drawn in the best and brightest team members to solve some of the most challenging issues in getting a billion-dollar program into the heart of the city of St. Louis,” said Farmer. “USACE rarely has an opportunity to work in this type of urban environment. While it does offer challenges, the potential for lasting positive effects to the core of a city make it even more rewarding. These new facilities will provide the nation with the necessary cuttingedge geospatial intelligence capabilities, making this adventure extremely fulfilling.” Construction will begin in spring 2019, with an expected completion date in 2024. USACE is responsible for constructing the facility after the land transfer. In September 2017, USACE selected three design-build teams to compete for the design and construction contract of the new NGA West. This evaluation of team qualifications completed the first phase of the selection process for contract award. Robyn Kiefer is the project manager for the Design-Build Contract Acquisition effort. “Phase 2 requirements include key personnel, technical design solutions, key subcontractors, economy and efficiency, small business participation plans, and price,” Kiefer said. “The technical design solution considers the proposed solutions’ performance, use, aesthetics, and integrated design.”

Kansas City District Project Manager Laurie Farmer entertains questions from St. Louis citizens at the Draft Environmental Impact Statement public meeting in St. Louis, Missouri.

The design-build contract award for construction is expected in March 2019. NGA and its predecessor agencies have called St. Louis home for more than 70 years. 1943-1952 – Aeronautical Chart Plant 1952-1972 – Aeronautical Chart & Information Center 1972-1996 – Defense Mapping Agency 1996-2003 – National Imagery and Mapping Agency 2004-Future – National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency In 2014, NGA announced that it would move from its current facility in south St. Louis, because it was determined a new facility would best support its future needs and technologies. In June 2016, NGA announced that St. Louis will remain its home and the new NGA West will be developed north of downtown St. Louis. Announcing its decision, NGA Director Robert Cardillo outlined why the agency selected St. Louis City’s site for building a 21st century campus. Reasons include partnerships with universities and innovative, technology-based companies; the ability to recruit new talent based on the environment the city offers; and proximity to its data facilities as well as current and future workforce. n 71




aving your car’s engine sputter when you step on the gas because of dirty fuel can be annoying, but having your engine sputter when you’re in the cockpit of an F-16 – going Mach 2 thousands of feet in the air – can be deadly. The responsibility for ensuring that doesn’t happen to U.S. military aircraft begins with the Petroleum, Oil, and Lubricants Mandatory Center of Expertise (POL-MCX) at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Omaha District. The POL-MCX is recognized by the Department of Defense as the authority for all military fuel storage and delivery systems, providing an all-inclusive design center located in the Omaha District with a mission to design and implement military fuel storage and delivery systems that reliably provide clean fuel safely to support the U.S. military. The POL-MCX designs the entire system: storage tanks, pumps, valves, the pump house, and fuel piping. “We started off oddly enough designing support facilities for cruise missile systems in the early 1980s,” said Program Manager Greg Etter. “Part of that requirement was working on storing fuel and making sure that those missiles were ready. So, of all things, it’s cruise missiles, but that’s where we got our start.” The expertise and reputation of the district’s fuel program would grow significantly in the following years. Etter said the first real opportunity to demonstrate Omaha District’s abilities came when the Air Force had a requirement to design and construct a new fuels facility for the B-1 bomber on Ellsworth Air Force Base, South Dakota. “The Air Force came in with their own command fuels engineer,” Etter said. “This is the guy who has to look the pilots in the eyes and say, ‘You won’t fall out of the sky because of bad fuel, I will make sure of that.’ That’s a tremendous responsibility, so they take their job real seriously.” The Air Force was concerned with two characteristics of its fueling systems: consistency and contingency. Consistency, because an airman working on the system at Ellsworth had to be able to go halfway around the world and be able to operate the fueling system at Ramstein Air Base, Germany. Contingency, so that the system will be able to work even when nothing else will. “We did something that, the way I’ve heard it, no other district did until then: We listened,” Etter recounted. “We said, ‘OK we won’t


fight you, we understand the need for consistency and contingency, we’ll work with you.’” The Ellsworth project led to another at Offutt Air Force Base, Nebraska, with even more following. Eventually the Omaha District’s fuels program was designated as a Design Center of Expertise, and then in 2016, as a Mandatory Center of Expertise. “From cruise missiles to where we are now, operating as the only project life cycle production center with mandatory center of expertise authorities in USACE, we’ve evolved a lot over those 33 years. We have developed the in-house capability to execute a project from design to construction to repair and provide those same tools and assistance so other districts may be successful,” Etter said. Today, the POL-MCX reach is worldwide, and its level of support is increasing. In 2017, the program completed $93 million worth of work, and increased to $120 million for FY 18. The in-house resources delivered by the POL-MCX provide the highest level of design quality, execution safety, and post-construction support and include: • Technical review of fueling systems designs performed by, or administered by, other districts and other commands. • Consultation services for design (full service), support to design, testing support, programming support, and construction inspection support for fueling systems. • Contract capacity for fuels design and construction/repair. • Assistance to commands in conducting final acceptance testing of fueling systems. • Project-specific quality-assurance training. • Development of technical guidance and guide specifications for fueling systems. “If you take a normal tanker truck out [on the flight line] and it’s pumping maybe 600 gallons per minute, and they’re filling 30,000 gallons on a KC-135 or KC-46 aerial refueling aircraft, it’s going to take quite a few trucks a whole lot of man-hours to fill those types of aircraft,” Etter said. “These fueling systems are designed to operate at 2,400 gallons per minute with one or two operators on the apron.” Because the design of the system has the fuel moving in a continuous loop (and is able to fuel multiple aircraft simultaneously) it accomplishes two objectives: It cleanses the fuel because it routes it through the filter separator, flushing out any sediment, contaminants, or water, and prevents damage if there is any pressure surge either from someone starting or stopping fueling by dissipating pressure.



While the fueling system has undergone a metamorphosis throughout the years, Etter is excited about what might still come, and knows it will take the total team effort that has already been a recipe for success. “What makes me swell with pride is knowing that you know you’re not alone in this. We operate as a matrix organization, so I have counterparts in contracting, construction, and engineering who are just as prideful about this program. It’s rewarding to see the great things USACE can accomplish when other districts leverage our 33 years of experience and make a real difference for the warfighter.” n

Program Manager Greg Etter of the Petroleum, Oil, and Lubricants Mandatory Center of Expertise gives Omaha District Commander Col. John Hudson a tour of the fuels pump house on Offutt Air Force Base, Nebraska. The center uses its teams within the Omaha District to provide technical support, construction placement, project management, and contract administration services to meet specific military fuel storage and delivery requirements of any installation worldwide.







he Columbia River Bar is one of the most treacherous waterways to navigate in the world, with more than 2,000 vessels lost, but that hasn’t deterred mariners from crossing it for hundreds of years. The Columbia River, the largest in the Pacific Northwest, has millions of cubic yards of sediment flowing down annually into the mouth, where the river crashes into the Pacific Ocean. The forces from these two powerful bodies of water push all that sediment around creating ship-wrecking sandbars that are continually shifting. The earliest sailors relied on local Native Americans to guide their ships through the bar, but getting through safely was always a gamble. In 1882, Congress tasked the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) to come up with a plan to tame the mouth of the Columbia River and manage the shoaling that kept many ships in port until high tide. Three years later, USACE’s Portland District began construction of south jetty on the Oregon side of the river. To initially place the 9 million tons of stone that currently makes up the south jetty, USACE built railroad systems along the jetty path 6 miles into the Pacific Ocean. The metaphor that “they were building the plane while flying it” aptly describes the Herculean task USACE undertook, except that, of course, airplanes had yet to be invented. By 1913, it was clear that the south jetty wasn’t going to tame the hazardous inlet by itself. When USACE completed the north jetty on the Washington state side of the river in 1917, it worked in conjunction with the south jetty to reform the broad and unpredictable 5-mile-wide inlet into a stable 2-mile-wide inlet and increased the average channel depth to 40 feet. The new 40-foot channel created by the north and south jetties continued to shift northward due to the flow from the mighty Columbia River, ultimately cutting a trench into the north jetty. USACE completed building jetty A in 1939 to redirect the flow back toward the middle of the river. The pounding that the jetties have endured for more than 130 years required the Portland District to make multiple repairs to all three jetties over time, but the jetty system is showing its age. To ensure that this vital waterway remains open for the $24 billion of commerce that is transported annually, USACE is rehabilitating the complete jetty system. Even with modern and powerful construction machinery, the project will take seven to eight years to complete. Working from the smallest to

Heavy earth-moving equipment offloads car-sized stones that were used to repair Jetty A at the mouth of the Columbia River.

largest jetty, USACE is scheduled to complete the entire rehabilitation project by 2024. USACE completed the rehabilitation of jetty A, the smallest of the jetties, in 2017. At a cost of around $20 million, USACE placed nearly 83,000 tons of stone on the 0.9-mile-long jetty. In March 2018, USACE began construction at the north jetty and expects to place 140,000 tons of stone on the 2.5-mile-long jetty at a cost of nearly $30 million. USACE anticipates construction to be complete in October 2019. Portland District is finalizing the design specifications for the 6.3-mile-long south jetty, with construction scheduled from 2019 to 2024. USACE estimates that it needs about 360,000 tons of stone to rehabilitate the south jetty. The largest stones used to repair all three jetties can weigh up to 42 tons. The companies transporting these mammoth stones use both trucks and barges to ship the stones from quarries. Unlike their predecessors who dumped the stones to create the jetties, today’s workers use modern equipment that allows them to interlock the stones like a puzzle resulting in jetties that need less stone and are more resilient to Mother Nature. The major rehabilitation of the mouth of the Columbia River Jetty System should extend the life of these jetties another 50 years, helping ensure the reliability of the federal Columbia Snake River System for future generations. n





he largest trap-and-haul fish passage facility in the nation is under construction, and while it’s a Seattle District project, it’s a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) collaboration success story, going from design to construction start in three years and on track to meet an operational 2020 date. The project will transport Endangered Species Act (ESA)-listed and other fish around Mud Mountain Dam near Buckley, Washington. USACE’s design team for this $112 million project included more

The largest trap-and-haul fish passage facility in the nation under construction on the White River near Buckley, Washington. It’s a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers collaboration success story, going from design to construction start in three years, and included more than 150 employees from four Northwestern Division districts: Seattle, Walla Walla, Portland, and Omaha.

than 150 employees from four Northwestern Division districts: Seattle, Walla Walla, Portland, and Omaha. The U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center also was involved, helping with scale models to determine how the White River’s massive silt and bed load would flow through and around the project. Two architecture and engineering firms, and several regional stakeholders, the Muckleshoot Indian Tribe, Cascade Water Alliance, and National Marine Fisheries Service also were involved. 75

NORTHWESTERN DIVISION The earthen, rock-filled flood risk reduction dam – built in 1948 – protects more than 400,000 homes and businesses along the White and Puyallup river valleys. During dam construction, USACE also built a trap-and-haul facility. Designed to transport about 4,000 fish a day, it is inadequate by today’s standards for moving the now ESA-listed Puget Sound steelhead, Puget Sound Chinook salmon, and Coastal-Puget Sound and coastal bull trout. The facility must also move non-listed Coho and pink salmon, and several other species. During pink salmon migration, in odd years, the outdated facility manages to move upward of 20,000 fish per day. In 2014, NOAA Fisheries issued a biological opinion, recommending major improvements in the dam’s fish passage operations and related structures, including a new, operational facility requirement by December 2020. “The BiOp’s [biological opinion] operational facilities requirements included moving 60,000 fish per day,” said Senior Project Manager Leah Hauenstein. “It was a huge push to try and meet that 2020 deadline and one that wouldn’t have happened without the regional design team and our partners.” With so much collaboration this was considered a “team of teams” by Seattle District Commander Col. Mark Geraldi, all coming together to meet extremely tight deadlines with difficult requirements. “In record time, this team delivered an exceptional design, awarded a contract in March, and were on-site ready to start construction within a few weeks,” said Geraldi. “It was truly exceptional work getting to that point and our construction team is now working diligently to keep the project on track while it’s being built.”

Kiewit Infrastructure West Company’s $112 million bid and construction plan for project completion by December 2020 earned it the contract award. “The contractor’s ability to quickly construct an operational facility was one of the primary evaluation criteria,” said Hauenstein. Recent years have also seen large increases in the White River Chinook salmon run. The 2017 count was 16,271, a 174 percent increase over 2016’s 9,347 total, which was the best seen in 71 years of return records. With historical lows of only a few dozen Chinook 20 years ago, officials believe recent rebounds are results of collaborative efforts in managing ESA-listed fish and designated critical habitat by USACE, NOAA Fisheries, Muckleshoot and Puyallup Indian Tribes, and Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife officials. These recent rebounds make it even more important for a new facility. USACE officials worked with land owners in the project footprint, including the Muckleshoot Indian Tribe and Cascade Water Alliance, to acquire needed easements and real estate in time for the March 2018 contract award. As with any construction project, schedule risks are inherent and include material and labor availability, weather, and unanticipated site conditions. “We’re committed, as we know every one of our partners and stakeholders are, to improving fish passage conditions at Mud Mountain Dam as soon as possible,” said Hauenstein. “The completed fish passage facility will help restore ESA-listed runs, ensuring all fish populations can continue to reach essential upper White River spawning and rearing grounds.” n



new advanced technology turbine is being installed at Ice Harbor Dam in eastern Washington. Ice Harbor Lock and Dam, located on the lower Snake River near Pasco, Washington, was constructed in the late 1950s. Its first three hydro-turbine units were brought on line in 1961 and three additional hydro-turbines became operational in 1976. Ice Harbor consists of the dam, powerhouse, spillway, navigation lock, two fish ladders, a removable spillway weir, and a juvenile fish bypass facility. Ice Harbor Dam is a valuable site for developing technical innovations aimed at raising survival rates of endangered and threatened fish


in the region and the process to develop the new turbine designs is a model for future modernizations planned at McNary Dam and other federal dams in the Northwest. As a trio of 1961-vintage hydroelectric turbines approached the end of their design life, the Bonneville Power Administration, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) and Walla Walla District recognized a window of opportunity to improve passage conditions for fish. “After 50 years of operation and increasing maintenance requirements, the need to replace the existing turbine runners at Ice Harbor presented the opportunity to pursue new turbine designs with fish


carbon steel turbines. All three turbine units utilized greaseless bushings in the turbine gates to reduce oil infiltration into the river. USACE operations officials anticipate the improved design will help reduce maintenance costs, and based on scale-model testing, the improved flow conditions are anticipated to increase both fish survival and also may increase power generation by 3 to 4 percent. “We are creating meaningful improvements to the environmental performance of a critical Northwest power resource,” Crum said. It was assembled at the dam for installation into Unit 2, a process scheduled to be completed this fall. The adjustable blade designs for Units 1 and 3 are scheduled to be completed over the next three years. n

The advanced-technology turbine is being prepped for loading into the turbine pit at Ice Harbor Dam’s powerhouse. This fixed-blade stainless steel turbine, which is more efficient and safer for fish, provides better resistance to cavitation pitting and corrosion caused by water.


passage improvement as a priority,” said Kevin Crum, project manager for the turbine modernization project. USACE spearheaded an effort to partner with the hydro-turbine industry, power providers, and oversight entities to develop improved turbines designs. The design process combined USACE expertise in physical hydraulic modeling and fish passage, Bonneville Power Administration’s economic expertise, and NOAA Fisheries’ knowledge of anadromous fish biology, with Voith Hydro Inc.’s industry expertise in designing large-scale hydro-turbines. The collaboration developed an adjustable-blade turbine that improves hydraulic conditions for juvenile salmon and steelhead passing through the turbines. The $73 million contract, including options, calls for the installation of new runner replacements on three turbines – one fixed-blade runner into Unit 2, plus two adjustable runners into Unit 1 and Unit 3 – along with fish passageway improvements at Ice Harbor during the next few years. The runner is similar to a propeller that spins to produce hydroelectric power. The fixed-blade turbine runner was fabricated with stainless steel hub and blades, which better resists cavitation and corrosion caused by water forces than the original


PACIFIC OCEAN DIVISION BY THE NUMBERS • Integrates and employs engineer capabilities to deliver solutions that promote security and stability in the Indo-AsiaPacific region, and protects the nation through the Pacific Ocean Division (POD) four engineer districts – Alaska, Far East, Honolulu, and Japan – located across the U.S. IndoPacific Command (INDOPACOM) and U.S. Northern Command areas of responsibility. • Operates in a complex and diverse region that encompasses the largest area of division responsibility within USACE. • Spans 16 time zones. • Covers 52 percent of the Earth’s surface and includes half of the world’s population. • Includes four most-populous nations, two largest democracies, seven of the world’s 10 largest armies, and five of seven U.S. mutual defense treaties. • Enables basing, force projection, protection, and sustainment by providing our Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marine Corps forces and defense agencies the infrastructure to operate effectively, sustain readiness, and enhance quality of life.


POD is responsible for three of the four largest military/hostnation construction programs since the end of the Cold War – totaling nearly $26 billion. • The $10.7 billion multiyear, massive Korea Relocation Program includes the construction of 655 new and renovated facilities, which will enable the relocation of approximately 12,000 U.S. troops stationed in South Korea to U.S. Army Garrison Humphreys, in support of the United States-Republic of Korea Alliance. • A multibillion dollar, multiyear U.S.-Japan Defense Policy Review Initiative will ultimately result in the rebuilding of 77 percent of Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni. • The Futenma Replacement Facility’s scope of work includes 200 projects, which will reduce the U.S. military’s footprint in Okinawa. These projects embrace the nation’s commitment to the United States-Japan Alliance. • Builds partner capacity and all-hazards response through disaster risk management, technical engineering, water security, humanitarian assistance, and Foreign Military Sales

activities. POD works closely with INDOPACOM, U.S. Army Pacific (USARPAC), and our interagency partners in a “whole of government” approach to train and develop local leaders, engineers, and organizations, while conducting general engineering tasks with partners so that they may effectively protect and govern their citizens. • Conducted more than 385 partner-capacity building activities in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region since 2012, sharing best practice and lessons learned; providing subject-matter expert exchanges; enhancing trust and communication; and enabling alliances and partnerships. • Delivered more than 240 INDOPACOM humanitarian assistance (HA) “brick and mortar” projects, such as schools, clinics, and emergency shelters since 2007. • Managing nearly 60 INDOPACOM HA projects in seven countries. • Building partner capacity through 100-plus engagements and activities in 19 countries during FY 17-18. • Executes integrated water resource management in Hawaii, Alaska, U.S. Territories of Guam and American Samoa, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands. POD delivers enduring and essential water resources solutions and infrastructure, which includes navigation (deep-water commercial ports, small boat harbors, and harbors of refuge); flood and coastal risk management; an aquatic ecosystem restoration. • Maintains 89 harbors to ensure safe and efficient operations, enabling more that 65 million tons of cargo to pass annually in Alaska and Hawaii – locations that are highly depended on commercial and subsistence navigation. Anchorage Harbor is designated as one of only 19 Department of Defense “strategic seaports.”

PACIFIC OCEAN DIVISION Building 525 Fort Shafter, HI 96858-5440 (808) 835-4715 POD-PAO@usace.army.mil www.pod.usace.army.mil/ www.facebook.com/PODCorps ALASKA DISTRICT P.O. Box 6898 Anchorage, AK 99506-0898 (907) 753-2520 Public.Affairs3@usace.army.mil www.poa.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/AlaskaCorps www.twitter.com/AlaskaCorps www.flickr.com/AlaskaCorps www.youtube.com/user/AlaskaCorps

• Maintains 273,600 square miles of wetlands, about 7,390 miles of coastlines, 34,960 miles of tidal coastlands, and 89 ports or small boat harbors. The professional management of these resources has resulted no serious environmental incident or loss of aquatic habitat for 25 years. • Takes its role as environmental steward very seriously • Protects the nation’s aquatic resources, while allowing reasonable development through fair, flexible, and balanced permit decisions. Notably, the state of Hawaii is ranked first in the nation with 454 listings of endangered species. • Processed approximately 2,880 Regulatory Program actions in 2017, balancing reasonable development with protection of the waters of the United States. • Protects the public and restores the environment through the Defense Environmental Restoration Program for Formerly Used Defense Sites (FUDS) in Alaska and Hawaii, with more than 80 projects and more than $25 million in clean-up actions during FY 18. One example is the Waikoloa site on the island of Hawaii, where approximately 28,000 acres of this 123,000-plus-acre site have been cleared of more than 2,400 munitions and explosives of concern. This is the largest, active FUDS site nationwide. • Supports FEMA under the National Response Framework, with engineering resources for disaster response and the recovery of public works and critical infrastructure in a region where 80 percent of the world’s natural disasters occur. • Depends on a diverse and exceptional blend of all engineering and support competencies from its 1,600-strong POD team of active-duty military, U.S. and host-nation civilian engineers, scientists, and support staff to accomplish its mission. Agile and adaptive leaders and empowered team members are the strength and foundation of Pacific Ocean Division.

FAR EAST DISTRICT Unit 15546 APO AP 96205-5546 (011) 82-2-270-7501 DLL-CEPOF-PA@usace.army.mil www.pof.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/USACE.FED.Korea www.twitter.com/FarEastDistrict www.flickr.com/photos/fedpa www.youtube.com/user/FarEastDistrict

JAPAN DISTRICT Unit 45010 APO AP 96-338-5010 (011) 81-46-407-3021 CEPOJ-PA@usace.army.mil www.poj.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/JapanEngineerDistrict www.youtube.com/user/USACEJED

HONOLULU DISTRICT Building 230, Room 302 Fort Shafter, HI 96858-5440 (808) 835-4004 CEPOH-PA@usace.army.mil www.poh.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/HonoluluDistrict www.twitter.com/CorpsHonolulu www.flickr.com/HonoluluDistrict www.youtube.com/HonoluluDistrict



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BY ANT WAUN J. PARRISH, Far East District

The newly built Humphreys West Elementary School opened officially for students in June 2017.


ccording to a Live Science article titled, “What is STEM education?,” STEM is a curriculum based on the idea of educating students in four specific disciplines – science, technology, engineering, and mathematics – in an interdisciplinary and applied approach. The article goes on to state that STEM integrates them into a cohesive learning paradigm based on real-world applications.

In a study conducted by the U.S. Department of Education it was revealed that fewer students were focusing on STEM from the United States. It concluded only 16 percent of high school students were interested in these subject areas. As a result of the findings initiatives were launched to increase student’s engagement in those subjects. In 2009, the Obama administration announced the “Educate to Innovate” campaign to motivate and inspire students to excel



in STEM subjects according to the Live Science article previously mentioned. The article goes on to state, this campaign also addresses the inadequate number of teachers skilled to educate in these subjects. The goal is to get American students from the middle of the pack in science and math to the top of the pack in the international arena. Employees of the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers’ (USACE) Far East District (FED) have in recent years taken on the challenge to help inspire and teach students in STEM related fields. In 2013, USACE and the Department of Defense Education Activity Korea District signed an education partnership agreement at Seoul American High School. The partnership centered on support for the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics initiative. Former employees of the FED, Patrick Beard and Bernie Thompson, spearheaded the first STEM event in the spring of 2013 at Humphreys Elementary School. Beard explained why the STEM program was important to add as a part of the FED and its surrounding community. “Supporting STEM allows us to tell our story, and show kids what STEM does for them, and that it can be exciting,” said Beard. Beard said that STEM is crucial to him as an engineer and that it helped inspire him to mentor kids into his area of expertise. “I look at it a little bit from the selfish standpoint, because it makes me feel better as an engineer when the kids get quiet and act interested in what you’re saying and get excited about what they get to do,” said Beard. “Supporting STEM is as much for me as it is for them.” When Beard left FED to go back to Tulsa District, he passed the Humphreys event coordination to another employee who felt the same way about STEM. For the past four years, Jennifer Moore, Chief of FED’s Air Force Program & Business Process Branch, spearheaded a group of employees to facilitate STEM events at two Camp Humphreys elementary schools. “For the elementary school students it is a fun break from their normal school day, and for us it’s great to see the diverse group of students of all grades K-5,” said Moore. “They may not grasp the technology or complicated science behind some of the stations, but they are so excited.” The event is comprised of several interactive booths that cover several different engineering and science based concepts. Some of the stations include a rubber band helicopter, tension and structural strength testing, and connecting a circuit with a battery and light bulb. “I think that the joy the kids get from seeing a light bulb light up by just touching it with their finger, a battery, and a wire is enough that maybe they’ll think about that when they go to middle or high school and maybe it will excite them enough to pursue the sciences when they grow up”, said Moore. When Moore first became a part of volunteering and hosting STEM events, Camp Humphreys was undergoing a large


amount of construction due to its transformation plan. As a result Moore felt it was a great opportunity to explain to the students within the community what the FED was doing on the base. “In 2016 we held an event with the high school and middle school students, in which they had to compete to be selected for a shadowing day,” said Moore. “They were able to tour project sites during construction before the buildings were turned over to see what a day is like for a project engineer, or electrical engineer or what’s important to an architect.” The STEM initiative coincides with the Pacific Ocean Division’s implementation plan to “prepare for tomorrow.” Its objective is to build ready and resilient teams through innovative talent management and leader development strategies. “The school’s initiative for STEM and our goals align well,” said Moore. “By having USACE here working so closely, the schools have a group of qualified technical experts that want to volunteer their time to help push that mission.” The administration and staff at the Camp Humphreys’ schools said the initiative and participation of the FED employees who host the STEM events is a welcome addition to their curriculum. Rick Taylor, a Humphreys Central Elementary School teacher and STEM event coordinator, expressed his appreciation for the FED and its continued support to education. “We have gotten amazing support of our STEM activities from Jennifer Moore and a team of volunteers from the Corps of Engineers over several years,” said Taylor. “The work her volunteers do every year gets rave reviews from our staff and the students have a great time participating in the hands-on activities that are presented.” According to Dr. Jeff McGee, Humphreys West Elementary School principal, these events add an element to the student’s education that they wouldn’t receive until much later. “We don’t have an engineering program in elementary school,” said McGee. “So the great thing about STEM is that it provides a cohesive opportunity for students to build background knowledge, which they can build on when they get to middle and high school.” McGee explained that the STEM program along with the school’s resources prepares the students for their future and continues to build upon already acquired knowledge. “We have engineering in education kit Legos and robotics kits, which the children are always interested in using,” said McGee. “These types of learning activities are things that students remember and each year we’re able to layer on a new understanding and build a complex type of Lego or robot.” “I want to thank the Corps for being such active participants in the lives of our children,” said McGee. “Bringing instructors in from outside the school adds value, further than what we can do internally. So thank you so much.” n




External view of the Robert M. Casey Naval Family Branch Clinic in Iwakuni, Japan.

BY ANTHONY R. MAYNE, Japan Engineer District


eing in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), you realize that nothing happens in a vacuum. Every new project begins with a need or desire for improvement, a lack of infrastructure or environmental requirement concern. This is true of the newly opened Naval Family Branch Clinic, located at Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan. “The genesis of the project was the relocation of Carrier Air Wing Five from (Naval Air Station) Atsugi to Iwakuni,” said Richard A. Davis, deputy chief, Programs and Project Management Division, Japan Engineer District (JED). “The existing clinic at Iwakuni was undersized and unable to accommodate the increase in population.” The newly opened 12,374-square-meter medical/dental clinic is a world-class, state-of-the-art medical facility constructed entirely by the government of Japan. The crown jewel of this facility is two surgical suites and six suites that can deliver babies and allow the mother to recover.

The successful opening of this facility did not come easy. “A medical facility is the most difficult to build in the host nation program,” said Davis. “There are many conflicts between U.S. and Japanese criteria, especially medical gas, life safety, and mechanical requirements. The Japanese criteria is just a little bit different. Part of the emphasis on meeting U.S. criteria is the Joint Commission, which accredits medical facilities, including military hospitals and clinics, worldwide.” As the designated Department of Defense construction agent for Japan, JED is responsible for the execution of host-nation programs, including the Japan Facilities Improvement Program, Special Action Committee on Okinawa, and Defense Policy Review Initiative (DPRI), as well as various other host-nation relocation projects. These programs are designed, constructed, and funded by the government of Japan. “The Iwakuni [Resident Office] team and the [JED] engineers spent a lot of time in the first few months during construction to resolve more 83



USACE Deputy Commanding General for Military and International Operations Maj. Gen. Anthony C. Funkhouser is given a tour of a birthing suite at the Robert M. Casey Naval Family Branch Clinic by members of the Iwakuni resident office during his visit to the Japan Engineer District April 12, 2018.

than 300 incomplete or deficient design details after the government of Japan finished its design,” said Davis. “While the foundation work was being done, JED’s engineering and construction divisions worked through all of these issues and came up with agreeable solutions.” A key aspect for this project was commissioning the new facility. For medical facilities, commissioning is a long and detailed process that ensures the facilities are up to standard before the first patient visit occurs. “Complex facilities like hospitals want a robust commissioning plan to test all the medical gas systems, life safety systems, fire alarms, sprinklers, alarm systems, elevators, and mechanical systems,” said Davis. “Many rooms have very specific air change requirements, pressurization requirements, and temperature control, especially operating 84

suites and isolation rooms. We worked with the government of Japan to develop a plan to commission the facility and found out there were a lot [of ] shortfalls with the commissioning plan and execution.” Japanese and U.S. commission standards are different in how and what they test. “The government of Japan went through their commissioning effort, but it is not to the same rigor as the U.S. requires,” said Justin S. Gay, chief, Navy/Marine Corps Branch, JED. “For instance, fire alarm-pull devices require 100 percent verification, whereas Japanese commissioning only requires 10 percent to be tested. JED worked closely with the Navy to ensure that we would deliver the facility operational.” Trust between the Navy and JED was vitally important during the acceptance and commissioning process.


“We worked with Iwakuni DPRI and Naval Facilities to accept the facility by the U.S. government from the Japanese government,” said Gay. “Acceptance would allow the U.S. to commission the building per U.S. requirements vs. our limited access while under Japanese [direction]. Iwakuni accepted the building with agreement by both the Navy facilities owner and Navy Medicine who is the occupant user. “Navy Medicine had to delay movement of their personnel slated to come from Yokosuka and other hospitals and clinics throughout the region, while we commissioned the facility,” said Gay. “In order to accomplish this, I utilized international contracting vehicles provided through the Huntsville Center.” The U.S. Army Engineering and Support Center, Huntsville, (HNC), is a major element of USACE that supports Department of Defense and other government agencies worldwide. More than 1,000 employees from various program and project management, engineering, and support disciplines work at the Huntsville Center headquarters in Huntsville, Alabama, and its offices in Omaha, Nebraska, and Alexandria, Virginia. The relationship and teamwork that were cultivated between JED, the Navy, the Marine Corps, government of Japan, and team USACE was a big factor in the successful opening of the facility. “We used the MFAES [Medical Facilities Architectural and Engineering Services] Indefinite Delivery/Indefinite Quantity contract at Huntsville,” said Gay. “Huntsville provides a qualified group of


architectural and engineering firms who specialize in medical facilities both CONUS and OCONUS. HNC was quickly able to support JED by issuing a task order to support our commissioning effort.” “This was a total USACE effort,” said Davis. “In addition to the entities that Justin talked about, USACE has a Medical Center of Expertise. We involved them throughout the design, but it was a learning process for them, too. Trying to build a medical facility to U.S. criteria that also meets host-nation criteria. Because it was a Japanese designed and constructed facility, they learned a lot of lessons that will benefit future design and construction.” “We requested the MX [U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Medical Facilities Mandatory Center of Expertise and Standardization] to tour the nearly complete facility” said Gay. “Multiple team members representing numerous disciplines from the MX toured the facility. Their review demonstrated their expertise. The MX team identified points for technical improvement and compliance, which we were able to better socialize with our Japanese counterparts due to their input. Our goal was to provide the Navy with the world-class medical facility they anticipated instead of a burden that would require many post-occupancy corrections and create a significant impact to patient care. The commissioning contractor provided by HNC enabled JED to better understand the deficiencies and positioned JED to better present the concerns with the [government of Japan] for correction. The information was factual, based on



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UFC [Unified Facilities Criteria Program] criteria. Fast forward to today, Iwakuni is an occupied medical facility. They successfully delivered the first baby and performed the first inpatient surgery in June of 2018. The facility is currently occupied and Navy Medicine team has made their preliminary Joint Commission inspection.” The partnership with alliance partners was a large part of the success of this project. “The government of Japan understood the importance of patient care in Japan and was fully committed to supporting the sailors, Marines, and their families at Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni,” he added. “Based on our experience with the hospital in Okinawa and the clinic in Iwakuni we are able to turn over a more complete facility quicker than we were able to before,” said Davis. “I think this definitely is a success story,” said Davis. “From where we were at the end of construction to having the first birth, first surgery in June is definitely a big success.”

The new capabilities and design of the Robert M. Casey Naval Family Branch Clinic in Iwakuni.

“Our commitment was not just to deliver the facility, but a commitment to maintaining medical capability on a long-term basis,” said Gay. Japan engineer’s host-nation projects like the Iwakuni Medical/ Dental Clinic are designed and built by our alliance partner. Our military construction programs are designed and supported both in the district and across the USACE enterprise for our fellow military services here in Japan. Nothing is done in a vacuum; we all work together and successfully build together. n 87



stablished in 1929, the South Atlantic Division (SAD) is one of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) nine regions nationwide. Five operating districts, headquartered in Charleston, South Carolina; Jacksonville, Florida; Mobile, Alabama; Savannah, Georgia; and Wilmington, North Carolina, provide federal and military engineering support in Alabama, Georgia, Florida, South Carolina, North Carolina, and in parts of Mississippi, Tennessee, and Virginia. In addition, the division has responsibility for projects in Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Central and South America. The South Atlantic Division employs 3,314 civilians, military engineers, and professionals in disciplines ranging from project and construction management to environmental services, who manage a $3.6 billion program annually. Civil Works is engaged in water resources development in the southeastern United States, including Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. This mission includes the planning, design, construction, operation, and maintenance of water resource projects. Projects include dams, levees, canals, harbors, locks, pump stations, hydropower plants, and other facilities to better manage water resources. Its Regulatory Program provides more than 7,500 permit decisions and 5,000 jurisdictional determinations to private- and public-sector permit applicants annually, enabling millions of dollars in development projects that creates thousands of jobs both during and after construction, while protecting the physical, chemical, and biological integrity of waters of the United States including wetlands, streams, and navigable waters. Support to the U.S. military by providing engineering solutions and quality construction to support the American warfighter. SAD builds barracks, hospitals, office buildings, commissaries, and other facilities to meet the needs of the American military.

SOUTH ATLANTIC DIVISION 60 Forsyth St. SW Atlanta, GA 30303 (404) 562-5011 www.sad.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/USACESouthAtlanticDivision/ twitter.com/AtlantaCorps CHARLESTON DISTRICT 69A Hagood Ave. Charleston, SC 29403 (843) 329-8123 www.sac.usace.army.mil/ www.facebook.com/CharlestonCorps twitter.com/CharlestonCorps www.instagram.com/charlestoncorps/ www.youtube.com/user/USACESAC


Within division boundaries, there are 32 percent of the stateside Army and 18 percent of the Air Force as well as four major commands. In addition, the division has an extensive environmental program. It executes a full range of environmental cleanup and protection activities to include National Environmental Policy Act, environmental restoration, compliance, conservation, and pollution-prevention support to military installations throughout the world. Other federal agencies: South Atlantic Division provides its engineering and construction skills and capacity to assist other federal agencies such as the Department of Veterans Affairs, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the National Park Service. Internationally, the division serves U.S. Southern Command (SOUTHCOM), the State Department, and the U.S. Agency for International Development with their programs in Central and South America. Emergency management supports the National Response Framework, FEMA, states, and tribes with a wide variety of engineering and public works activities including debris clearance and removal, emergency power, temporary roofing, temporary housing, and critical public facilities following a disaster. We also support the combatant commanders with deployed civilians with reachback capability to meet the commander’s engineering needs. Real estate support includes both the Military Construction and Civil Works programs with a full-service suite of products and services in support of their missions, both CONUS and OCONUS. The products and services range from direct property acquisition, in-leasing, appraisals to rights of entry and utility facility relocations, and can be broadly categorized as planning, acquisition, technical services, and management and disposal.

JACKSONVILLE DISTRICT 701 San Marco Blvd. Jacksonville, FL 32207 (904) 232-2568 www.saj.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/JacksonvilleDistrict twitter.com/JaxStrong www.youtube.com/JaxStrong www.flickr.com/people/jaxstrong

SAVANNAH DISTRICT 100 W. Oglethorpe Ave. Savannah, GA 31401 (912) 652-5279 www.sas.usace.army.mil/ facebook.com/SavannahCorps twitter.com/SavannahCorps flickr.com/SavannahCorps youtube.com/SavannahCorps

MOBILE DISTRICT 109 Saint Joseph St. Mobile, AL 36602-3630 (251) 690-2505 www.sam.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/USACEMOBILE twitter.com/USACEMobile www.flickr.com/photos/usacemobile/albums www.youtube.com/channel/ UCt9ig7LmPjUrUAaSWWVH_Mw

WILMINGTON DISTRICT 69 Darlington Ave. Wilmington, NC 28403 (910) 251-4626 www.saw.usace.army.mil/ www.youtube.com/CORPSCONNECTION www.facebook.com/USACE.Wilmington

MULTIPLE-PURPOSE PROJECTS IN THE SOUTH ATLANTIC DIVISION NAVIGATION • 5,337 miles of navigable channels • 1,268 miles of levees • 234.4 milllion tons of commerce • 49 dams • 32 locks • 10 major harbors • 32 deep-draft harbors • 121 shallow-draft harbors

ENVIRONMENTAL/REGULATION • Everglades ($9.5 billion)

RECREATION • 31 lakes (6 of 10 most visited in the nation) • 26 visitor centers • 469 recreation sites • 199 boat ramps • 6,718 campsites

FLOOD DAMAGE REDUCTION • 5 percent of flood storage nationwide • 14 dams and reservoirs • 303 miles federal channel • 1,323 miles local levees/channels

WATER SUPPLY/CONSERVATION/STORAGE • 4.1 million acre-feet of storage for multiple purpose municipal and industrial use • 36 percent of potable water for Raleigh, North Carolina • 35 percent of potable water for Atlanta, Gorgia • 20 percent of potable water for South Florida

MILITARY CONSTRUCTION/MANAGEMENT • 5 major commands • 14 Army installations • 13 major Air Force bases • 32 percent Army (in the continental United States) • 18 percent Air Force

HYDROELECTRIC POWER • 14 plants in 5 states • 3,131 megawatts capacity • Approximately 5,000 gigawatt-hours generated • Approximately $208.9 million in sales revenue

Civil Works Areas of Responsibility

Military Programs Areas of Responsibility








Charleston District SAC


US Army Special Operations Command



Joint Special Operations Command


Jacksonville District SAJ Mobile District SAM Savannah District SAS FL

Wilmington District SAW


Caribbean Puerto Rico & US Virgin Islands

Multiple-Purpose Projects in SAD NAVIGATION • 5,337 Miles of Navigable Channels • 1,268 Miles of Levees • 234.4M Tons of Commerce • 49 Dams • 32 Locks • 10 Major Harbors • 32 Deep Draft Harbors • 121 Shallow Draft Harbors RECREATION • 31 Lakes (6 of 10 Most Visited in US)

Central America & South America

SAD Total Program Trends SAD Total Program Trends $8B $7B $6B $5B



Military Programs


Civil Works Civil Reimb.





Precast concrete walls are held in place after delivery to the new Pierce Terrace Elementary School on Fort Jackson in Columbia, South Carolina.

BY SE AN McBRIDE, Charleston District


hen you think of Styrofoam®, you usually think of it as holding your latest purchase in place while it’s shipped to you in a box through the mail. You pull out your product, recycle the Styrofoam, and never think about it again. The engineers working on the new Pierce Terrace Elementary School at Fort Jackson, South Carolina, thought of a whole new way to use Styrofoam – for the walls of the school. Called insulated concrete form (ICF) walls, these forms come in 48-inch long by 16-inch tall sections and can be connected together and cut to the exact length needed for the wall. The outsides are foam and are connected by plastic grooved pieces that hold the reinforcing


steel bars. Concrete is then poured inside the form to create a stable, insulated wall. “Using the ICF walls is a huge time-saver for our construction process,” said Brian Agan, project engineer. “The form serves as the entire wall, meaning no insulation or vapor barriers have to be added like what usually must be done when constructing plain concrete walls. Also, the interior drywall will adhere directly to the foam, allowing us to make progress that we never could have made with traditional methods.” After the first layer of ICF was set, the team was also able to concurrently lay the floor slab while the remaining layers of wall were installed.



This is the first time the Charleston District has used the ICF walls on a project before, but these have been used around the country on other Department of Defense Education Activity projects. The ICF walls are just one of the major unique updates for the Pierce Terrace project. The project also calls for pre-cast concrete panels to be used for the walls of the gym. Due to the height of the gym, ICF walls aren’t allowed to be used. The pre-cast panels are made offsite in a manufacturing facility and shipped to the school for installation. “Each panel weighs about 30,000 pounds and it takes an entire truck for one panel,” said Agan. “This process allows for more consistency in the construction of the panels and we were able to install them as soon as the site’s ground work was complete because they were already made.”

Inside of one of the insulated concrete form walls being used in construction of the new Pierce Terrace Elementary School on Fort Jackson.

The building’s footings, interior underground electrical and telecomm distribution, and plumbing pipe installation are complete. The surrounding areas have been graded and water and overhead power lines have been installed. With such a huge project going up from scratch, there are a lot of moving pieces to be coordinated and the $27 million school is still on track for completion in time to give the teachers and administrators time to move in before the doors officially open to students in August 2019. n 91




BY JOHN H CAMPBELL , Jacksonville District


hile much of the nation has focused on efforts to restore power in Puerto Rico in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) has also focused on implementing measures designed to reduce flood risk at multiple locations on the island. Engineers at USACE’s Jacksonville District have supervised the movement of dirt, the placement of rock, and other activities designed to stabilize a dam and levees that were damaged by the storm. “The levees constructed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers over the past 20 years in Puerto Rico performed as designed during hurricanes Irma and Maria,” said Alberto Gonzalez, a Jacksonville District


Crews repair damage from Hurricane Maria to the Río Grande de Manatí levee system near Barceloneta, Puerto Rico. Although the levee experienced significant erosion from the storm, it performed as designed, reducing effects from the storm for nearby residents.

project manager. “However, post-storm inspections revealed significant damages in some of the projects. We’re now working on repairs to some of the damaged structures.” But it’s been work on a structure that doesn’t fall under USACE authority that’s drawn most of the attention of people in the dam and levee safety community. Jacksonville District staff have worked tirelessly to stabilize the damaged spillway at Guajataca Dam located near Quebradillas on the island’s north side.



“After the hurricane passed, issues were discovered at the dam,” said Brenda Calvente, another Jacksonville District project manager. “Flows from heavy rains damaged the outlet works, a spillway, and a water supply line that ran underneath the channel.” Although Guajataca falls under the jurisdiction of the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA), FEMA tasked USACE to address the situation as quickly as possible given the high risk of further damage to the structure. “We placed more than 500 jersey barriers, some rock fill, and 1,300 huge sandbags in the channel to stabilize the spillway,” said Calvente. The materials helped keep water from eroding more of the spillway. At the same time, USACE staff, working with PREPA, began lowering the water level in the reservoir to a level that was deemed safe. USACE is now undertaking several measures designed to reduce the flood risk for people living and working in the area, although work is likely to last multiple years. Calvente says the goal for 2018 is to implement the highest-priority measures before another hurricane nears the island. “We plan to seal cracks, stabilize the slopes near the spillway, and place high-strength flowable fill around the jersey barriers,” said Calvente. Replacing gates and some of the operating works is planned for 2019. Meanwhile, a little more than 30 miles to the east, USACE has been working to repair damages to levees on the Río Grande de Manatí system near Balceloneta. Gonzalez said the storm caused significant erosion on a 1-mile-long segment of the system. “The mayor told us the project that we built changed the lives for the citizens in that area,” said Gonzalez. However, the system took quite a beating while reducing the risk of flooding from Irma. USACE has awarded a $2.7 million contract to repair the levee. The estimated completion for the work is this fall. On the south side of the island, the community of Yauco also sustained heavy damage from Maria when the flooded river carved

While providing restorative services for residents, USACE also has focused on implementing measures designed to reduce the risk of flooding at different locations around Puerto Rico.

a new path. Roads were damaged, as was a police station and some recreation facilities. To protect the town from future events, USACE began construction on a temporary levee in November, finishing the work in February 2018. Construction also continues on two projects that were underway before Maria. The Río Puerto Nuevo project is a multiyear effort to reduce flood risk in the San Juan metro area. So far, USACE has invested $337 million to reopen a river channel, move a 96-inch sewer pipe, and retrofit a bridge to help water flow. “Hurricane Maria dumped an estimated 200,000 cubic yards of sediment in the lower channel of this project,” said Gonzalez. “We are currently conducting tests of the material and will work with the EPA [Environmental Protection Agency] to ensure the sediment is disposed in an environmentally responsible manner.” Gonzalez estimates it will likely be 2019 before work can begin to remove the sediment from the lower channel. West of San Juan, near Dorado, work continues on the Río de la Plata project. Over the past few years, USACE has constructed a levee wall along the lower portions of the river. In 2017, Jacksonville District awarded a contract to start work on scour protection of a bridge in the area. “As in the past, now, and in the future, the Corps is there to make life better for the citizens of Puerto Rico,” said Gonzalez. “Whether in flood risk management, navigation, shore protection, or ecosystem restoration, we have a diverse workforce that is ready to work for the island.” n 93



BY CHUCK WALKER, Mobile District


he U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Mobile District announced the availability of the draft “Mobile Harbor, Mobile, Alabama Integrated General Reevaluation Report with supplemental Environmental Impact Statement” (Draft GRR/SEIS). This document was circulated to federal, state, and local agencies and the public. In June 2014, the Alabama State Port Authority requested USACE consider increasing the depth and width of the Federal Mobile Channel, specifically asking the Army Corps to investigate the feasibility of constructing the channel to dimensions authorized in Section 201 of the 1986 Water Resources Development Act (WRDA). The Tentatively Selected Plan (TSP) identified in Draft GRR/SEIS recommends improvements that are less than the dimensions authorized in the 1986 WRDA. The TSP includes: • Deepening the existing Bar and Bay Channels (including the Choctaw Pass Turning Basin), and a portion of the River Channel by 5 feet to project depths of 52, 50, and 50 feet, respectively; with an additional 2 feet for advanced maintenance, plus 2 feet of allowable overdepth for dredging. • Incorporating minor bend easings at the double bends in the Bar Channel approach to the Bay Channel. • Widening the Bay Channel from 400 feet to 500 feet from the mouth of Mobile Bay northward for 3 nautical miles to provide a two-way traffic area for passing. • Expanding the Choctaw Pass Turning Basin 250 feet to the south (at a depth of 50 feet) to better accommodate safe turning of the design vessel and other large vessels. “At present, the existing channel depths and widths limit vessel cargo capacity, restrict many vessels to one-way traffic, and in some reaches, limit transit operations to daylight only for vessels transiting in and out of Mobile Harbor,” said David Newell, USACE Mobile Harbor project manager. “These improvements to the harbor would enable larger and more numerous vessels to safely use the port.”


Judith Adams, public relations officer for the Alabama State Port Authority, said the improvements to Mobile Harbor are essential if the port wants to compete in the global market. “The Alabama State Port Authority’s obligation is to ensure the port of Mobile continue to provide critical infrastructure necessary to our economy, jobs’ creation, and international competitiveness,” Adams said. “Ships are getting larger and markets are continually expanding. Seaport infrastructure investments, like the deepening and widening of the Mobile Ship Channel, ensure both our agribusiness, mining, manufacturing, and retail shippers have access to cost-efficient ocean-carriage services necessary to compete in the global marketplace.” Material dredged during improvements will be placed at a relic-shell mined area and the Mobile Ocean Dredged Material Disposal Site. Any suitable Bar Channel new work material dredged in sufficient quantity to warrant placement at the Sand Island Beneficial Use Area (SIBUA) will be accomplished accordingly. Future material from channel maintenance will be placed at those previously noted disposal sites in addition to open-water sites adjacent to the channel, the northwestern SIBUA expansion, and/or upland disposal sites. Adams said improving Mobile Harbor is extremely important and the help the Alabama State Port Authority has received from USACE has been invaluable. “Modernizing the Mobile Harbor is a badly needed, market-driven investment that will positively advance the commerce of the region and the nation,” said Adams. “The proposed harbor and channel improvements are complex and require proactive engagement with the Corps’ subject-matter experts, the cooperating agencies, and the public. The Mobile District team worked closely with the Port Authority to develop a strategy aimed at garnering stakeholder engagement in the planning process. To date, the initiative has allowed the team to continuously share project information, while providing a platform through which the public could provide input on project components. The strategy also initiated early engagement, by way of focus group meetings of key



Mobile Harbor. Its modernization is economically crucial.

stakeholders proactive in water resources initiatives and neighboring port communities. This is quite a challenge, but the district, as well as the Corps’ division and headquarter team members, have been proactive and easy to work with throughout the process.”

A copy of the Draft “GRR/SEIS” is located at w w w. sam.usace.army.mil/Mis sions/Program - and - Projec tManagement/Civil-Projects/Mobile-Harbor- GRR/ More information is available online at http://www.sam.usace.army. mil/. n 95





uilding 125, one of Robins Air Force Base’s (AFB) most historic buildings, is currently undergoing a complete facelift, courtesy of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Savannah District. As one of the bases’ original structures, Building 125 was Robins’ first hangar, which was opened and dedicated in 1943. Since that time, the facility has been vital to the maintenance and repair of a variety of aircraft including one of the military’s largest cargo planes – the C-5 Galaxy. “This project is important because of the C-5 mission, and because Robins works on multiple aircraft. To my knowledge, it is the largest


Contractors from New South Construction work to renovate a 1940s-era hangar on Robins Air Force Base, Georgia, July 25. The 14.7-acre complex is the largest in the country and houses C-5 Galaxy, C-130, and F-15 aircraft. This is the first major renovation since the building was constructed in 1942. The seven-year, $75 million project is expected to be completed in 2021. Only one other similarly sized hangar complex exists, at Hill Air Force Base near Ogden, Utah. The renovation includes the installation of fire alarms, fire suppression systems, a new roof, and lighting throughout the facility.

facility available in the Air Force with the ability to work on the C-5s,” said David Trescott, 78th Civil Engineer Group project engineer, Robins Air Force Base. Trescott said the project will also support the increased workload at Robins, that earlier this year, made the Warner Robins Air Logistics Complex the primary location for depot maintenance of C-130s throughout the Department of Defense. Despite the facility’s age, it has stood the test of time. “Structurally it is well built, but as with any building, you have to do the maintenance and periodic major renovations,” said Richard Thomas, USACE resident engineer, Robins Air Force Base. “This is the first time we’ve done a full renovation on this facility since it was built.” The project was awarded in December 2013 to New South Construction company of Atlanta, Georgia. It includes the repair/ replacement of the existing fire suppression system, installation of a new fire alarm, mass notification system, sprinklers, roof, and internal gutter replacement. The total cost of the renovation will be nearly $75 million, not including interior renovations that will push the value over $100 million.



At 595,000 square feet, the facility is so large that it provides the capability to work simultaneously on four C-5 Galaxies. “People underestimate the sheer scale of the facility. It is huge,” said Thomas. “Logistically we’ve never done anything this large.” As one can imagine, there are challenges to renovating a building of this age and size. One of the biggest challenges is continuing aircraft maintenance operations during construction. Due to the size of the project and the importance of the C-5 mission, Thomas says that work is being completed in sections to ensure that portions the facility remain operational throughout construction. “This is an occupied facility,” said Thomas. “As we complete each dock, they are moving back in because there is no other facility that can handle the planes they have. As we are working in dock three, there are planes in docks one, two, and four. We have workers with ear plugs doing their normal day-to-day stuff and we are blasting right beside them.” Also because of the age of the facility and its historical significance, approval was needed from the State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) to renovate or remove certain historical preservation features, such as the skylights. “Although they have never been used, we had to get a waiver to take the skylights out,” said Thomas. Removing the skylights and removing paint by blasting from the High Bay is a $7 million modification, which extended the project’s completion by two years. Throughout the years, the facility has accumulated a lot of garbage, like abandoned pipes, heavy metal, and conduit, which was left behind

An aerial overview of the Building 125 complex. At 14.7 acres, it’s the largest hangar facility in the country.

when new work had to be installed for new missions. This project has allowed us to clean a lot of that stuff out of there,” said Trescott, making building maintenance much easier in the future. “We’ve had some challenges, we have been pretty successful in accomplishing what we need to through team work and a great relationship with the contractor and the base, “said Thomas. Thomas said the contrast between the old and the new facility is like night and day. “The older facility was like walking into a cave, with no insulation,” said Thomas. “In the winter, it was cold and in the summer, it was hot. Now when you walk in, there’s bright white walls, floors, and steel. Everything just pops.” Additionally, translucent wall panels now replace the old rusted metal, allowing in more natural light, which provides a better working environment. “Once we got the first dock completed, people were like ‘I can’t wait to work in here,’ because they could actually see what they were doing,” said Thomas. To date, about 70 percent of the work has been completed, with the remainder of the project slated for completion in 2021. n 97





he residents of Ocean Isle, North Carolina, pride themselves for having a picturesque, small town, but with all of the amenities of a larger coastal community. And according to the town of Ocean Isle’s promotional video, it has “family friendly events throughout the year, waterfront dining, and a great place for bonding with family or reconnecting with friends.” Earlier this year, Ocean Isle received the title of the “South’s Best Tiny Town 2018” by Southern Living magazine. It draws tourists from major urban areas such as Wilmington and Myrtle Beach, and North Carolina Department of Transportation highway signs direct people to “Brunswick County Beaches” as a tourist and recreational area. It provides an alternative location for recreational opportunities outside of the more heavily visited beaches at Wrightsville, Kure, and Carolina beaches. The Wilmington District recently added to the aesthetics of Ocean Isle Beach through the Coastal Storm Risk Management project, which is designed to minimize loss of life and property during hurricanes or other inclement weather. Wilmington District officials and town of Ocean Isle leaders have had a strong relationship since 2001 when the first project began, and through cooperative understanding, the partnership involves listening and understanding to concerns the people of Ocean Isle might have for a Coastal Storm Risk Reduction project and how the district accommodates the citizens and leadership alike. Local officials laud the fact that the

A bulldozer moves dredged material toward the center section of the project.

benefits the project provides help keep the town of Ocean Isle and the surrounding area economically sound. “The Ocean Isle project is an economic generator and offers plenty of recreational opportunities,” said Navigation Project Manager Jim Medlock. “The number of people who visit Ocean Isle helps provide a strong economy for the town, Brunswick County, and the state of North Carolina. People spend money to stay in hotels or rental homes, dine out, go to movies, use surf shops, etc., which trickles down to local businesses.” n



pecial operations forces (SOF) perform missions in support of geographic combatant commanders or U.S. ambassador requirements. They operate at a grass roots level by training, advising, and living alongside people of foreign cultures, and they develop understanding and wield influence through a network of personnel and assets. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) manages the construction of high-tech facilities that are designed to meet the needs of the U.S. Army Special Operations Command (USASOC). The pace of


construction is intense and is changing the face of the installation. Decades-old buildings from bygone Army eras are being replaced by more modern and efficient buildings. USACE project managers work closely with the USASOC community to ensure that the construction is on time, on budget, and fits the operational profile of special operations forces. “USACE is nearing completion of the $9 million indoor firing range and recently completed the $61 million Language and Cultural Center,” said Maj. Gen. Anthony Funkhouser, the deputy commanding



general for Military and International Operations. “Both facilities will enhance Special Operations Forces capabilities. Other SOF facilities under construction include two different battalion operations facilities, a Special Tactics Facility, and the Training Command Building. There are quite a few additional facilities that are in the various stages of design and construction on Fort Bragg, North Carolina. And there are even more projects in the pipeline as USACE supports USASOC project development as additional USASOC projects compete in the Military Construction process for future projects.” “They know what they want, they need it then, right now, just like they expect in their own missions,” said Ron Cannady, chief of the Wilmington District’s Fort Bragg USASOC Resident Engineer Office. “We pride ourselves in trying to be able to meet those missions and to work with them through any bumps along the way, to readjust, to make that happen in their time line.” What’s bringing the special operations community into a new era of operational efficiency is the consolidation of its facilities. Units and their facilities used to be scattered around Fort Bragg, which wasted valuable time and resources. Now they’re located in centralized areas. “We have a battalion operations facility and a tactical maintenance facility that are purpose built for the unit,” said 3rd Special Forces Group Engineer Maj. Dan Fox. “So, from that the unit gains a lot of efficiencies not only in the sense of energy efficiencies that the building provides saving maintenance dollars for the unit, but also in operations. By consolidating the unit, they no longer have to drive across Fort Bragg to get to their storage warehouse or equipment. Everything is brought here to one facility.” Speed and precise coordination are critical during a special operations mission. But planning for missions also requires time checks and constant communication. The new facilities are designed to take Soldiers all the way through the planning phase to preparation and finally to execution of the mission.

Contractors work on the outside of the U.S. Army Special Operations Command Language and Cultural Center on Fort Bragg, North Carolina.

“Now with the new facilities, everything is under one roof,” said USASOC Command Engineer Col. Lee Hicks. “When they finish their planning, which is right next to their team room, they go downstairs, grab their specialized equipment, and move on out. It’s very efficient and cuts down on a lot of wasted time going back and forth between different facilities.” What makes the buildings invaluable to special operations is that they’re designed to adapt to technological advancements such as hightech communications systems that require frequent upgrades. And when it comes to paying monthly utility bills, the Army is saving money by incorporating cost-saving measures such as specialized windows that block harsh sunlight on hot summer days, and lights that shut off automatically when no one is in a room. “The cost savings actually come in the life cycle of the building,” Cannady said. “A lot of times the up-front costs you put into it may be the same or a little bit more than normal construction. However, if you look at the long-term costs to operate and maintain that facility, that’s where you come into the savings from the lower power bills and lower utility usage.” As units move into their new facilities, the buildings themselves transition from becoming lifeless, tech-heavy shells to homes away from homes. Soldiers tailor their buildings to reflect their unit’s personality and unique characteristics. And on the walls, are pictures of brothers in arms – brothers who fought and died for each other and for their country. For more information about the U.S. Army Special Operations Command, go to: www.soc.mil. n 99

SOUTH PACIFIC DIVISION South Pacific Division by the Numbers: • 10 states (five shared with other divisions) • 170 federally recognized tribes • 81 members of the U.S. House of Representatives • 20 U.S. Senators • 2,286 miles of federal levees • 46 dams and reservoirs • 5 strategic ports • Less than 20 inches annual precipitation; prone to flood/ drought cycles • 30 recreational areas, hosting 15.7 million visits annually • 300 of 1,200 threatened/endangered species • 4 EPA and FEMA regions (6, 8, 9, 10) • 13 Army and 12 Air Force Installations/programs


SOUTH PACIFIC DIVISION 450 Golden Gate Ave. San Francisco, CA 94102 spd-pao@usace.army.mil (415) 503-6517 www.spd.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/SouthPacificDivisionUSACE www.twitter.com/USACE_SPD www.instagram.com/USACE_SPD www.youtube.com/user/Southpacificdivision

LOS ANGELES DISTRICT 915 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 1105 Los Angeles, CA 90017 PublicAffairs.SPL@usace.army.mil (213) 452-3921 www.spl.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/ladistrict www.twitter.com/CorpsLAdistrict www.flickr.com/photos/losangelesdistrict www.youtube.com/user/USACE90017

ALBUQUERQUE DISTRICT 4101 Jefferson Plaza, NE Albuquerque, NM 87109 cespa-pa@usace.army.mil (505) 342-3349 www.spa.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/albuquerquedistrict www.twitter.com/USACE_ABQ www.flickr.com/photos/usace_albuquerque

SACRAMENTO DISTRICT 1325 J St. Sacramento, CA 95814 spk-pao@usace.army.mil (916) 557-5100 www.spk.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/sacramentodistrict www.twitter.com/USACESacramento www.flickr.com/photos/sacramentodistrict www.youtube.com/user/SacramentoDistrict

SAN FRANCISCO DISTRICT 1455 Market St. San Francisco, CA 94103 cespn-pa2@usace.army.mil (415) 503-6804 www.spn.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/USACESPN www.twitter.com/USACESPN www.youtube.com/user/USACESanFrancisco




he U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) South Pacific Division provides federal and military engineering support in California, Arizona, Nevada, Utah, New Mexico, and in parts of Colorado, Oregon, Idaho, Wyoming, and Texas. Comprised of 2,300 Soldiers and civilians at four operating districts (headquartered in Los Angeles, Sacramento, San Francisco, and Albuquerque), the division manages a broad range of challenging missions across an economically, environmentally, and culturally diverse region, executing an annual budget of more than $5.5 billion. The South Pacific Division’s military construction program supports 25 Army and Air Force installations, including Military Ocean Terminal Concord, a crucial component of military logistics and readiness, as well as Nellis, Cannon, Hill, and Kirtland Air Force bases. The division is also partnering with the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to build world-class medical facilities supporting our veterans. South Pacific Division is managing a $3 billion mega-program to modernize seven VA hospitals in California and Nevada, working in partnership to deliver projects that will serve those who have served our country. South Pacific Division’s Civil Works program leverages federal resources for navigation, flood damage reduction, and ecosystem restoration. In the predominantly arid Pacific southwest, water resources are vital to agriculture, urban development, natural ecosystems, tribal interests, and recreation. Major river basins include the Sacramento, San Joaquin, Santa Ana, Colorado, and Rio Grande,

which are governed by complex water rights. Accordingly, South Pacific Division works in partnership with other federal agencies, state governments, and local communities on collaborative solutions to these complex water resource issues. The division is also a leader in emergency preparedness, response, and recovery. As part of the federal response to the 2017 northern California wildfires, more than 850 USACE personnel from across the nation supported the debris removal and other missions. Within eight months, 4,572 properties were cleared, moving 2.2 million tons of debris – the largest wildfire cleanup in California history. Under the Bipartisan Budget Act Storm Supplemental, the division is executing $2.5 billion in long-term Investment construction focused on flood risk resiliency to reduce risk to communities and infrastructure. The division is also home to the Urban Search and Rescue Program, which trains and deploys structural engineers to augment FEMA task forces, the military, and others in evaluating immediate structural conditions in a natural or man-made disaster. n 101




James Glover, environmental scientist with Britannia Environmental Consulting, points out a feature on a practice bomb held by Mark Dixon, director of Isleta Pueblo’s Department of Natural Resources April 17, 2018. The bomb was just one of many the military dropped on a precision bombing range on the pueblo while training pilots during the 1940s.

BY ELIZ ABE TH LOCK YE AR, Albuquerque District


ince 2000, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Albuquerque District has partnered with Native American communities to address thousands of acres of tribal lands affected by past military activities through a unique program. The creation of the Native American Lands Environmental Mitigation Program (NALEMP) recognized that the Department of Defense (DOD) has an obligation to address past military activity on tribal lands and the importance of engaging affected tribes in the cleanup.


NALEMP is unique in the support, consultation, and training provided to the affected tribe. Beyond cleaning up affected land, the program also provides training in project oversight and hazardous operations management. Through engagement with the tribe, traditional ecological knowledge, and land use can be incorporated into the project design. Nationally DOD has executed more than 260 cooperative agreements (CAs) with more than 55 tribes, totaling more than $114 million through NALEMP. Since 2000, Albuquerque District has executed CAs



with seven pueblos in New Mexico for a total amount of approximately $17 million. More than 7,600 acres have been surveyed and cleared through 2017. The Albuquerque District has had CAs with the Acoma, Isleta, Laguna, San Felipe, Santa Ana, Santo Domingo pueblos, and the Zuni tribe. “This program is very unique because our tribal partners are able to take control of their site remediation and build the technical capacity for this unique type of work within the pueblo, which I think is wonderful,” said Monika Sanchez, the district’s NALEMP program manager. “We couldn’t accomplish so much without our great partners who are willing to mentor each other. They share lessons learned with other program participants, which key in the success of our program.” The Pueblo of Isleta, New Mexico, has 15 sites addressed and eight sites remaining that were either used by the Defense Department or were affected by undocumented defense-related activities (such as

Contractors with Britannia Environmental Consulting and Silent Hawk Environmental conduct a visual search for munitions debris on one of the Isleta Pueblo sites being remediated April 17, 2018.

aircraft crash sites). The amount of affected land is estimated to be more than 29,000 acres, most of which is in remote and sparsely populated areas of the pueblo. Since signing a cooperative agreement in 2001, the pueblo has received more than $3.7 million for investigations and clearance activities through NALEMP. The pueblo successfully remediated one 6,000 acre and 4,200 acres of another, larger site. “We sincerely enjoy working with the USACE NALEMP program because without their partnership, our lands would not be cleaned 103



up,” said Mark Dixon, director of Isleta Pueblo’s Department of Natural Resources. “Although there is still much work to be done, the continued success of the program at the tribal level can only be attributed to the willingness of the USACE’s trust responsibility. The capacity-building and environmental remediation on tribal lands would not be possible without this program.” n

Approximately 1,500 pounds of munitions debris awaiting removal from an Isleta Pueblo site April 17, 2018.



n the early morning hours of Jan. 9, 2018, a mudslide ripped through the heart of Montecito, California – one of the most affluent communities within Santa Barbara County. The rumble of debris rushing down the mountainside jolted residents out of their beds, and took with it homes, property and the lives of 21 people. As of August, two children were still listed as missing and presumed dead. The mudslide’s path was set in motion in December 2017 by the Thomas wildfire – one of the largest wildfires in California’s history


– that scorched a path of more than 270,000 acres, or about 425 square miles, through Ventura and Santa Barbara counties. Without brush and vegetation on the mountainside, areas below were vulnerable during the state’s rainy season. During the days and weeks after the mudslide in Montecito, several feet of mud covered the streets and caked the insides and outsides of homes. Cars and structures crumpled under the pressure of the mud, debris, and hundreds of boulders that rained down from the mountainsides, overtopping the community’s channels and basins.



Within a day of the mudslide, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) issued a verbal debris removal mission to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) to clear Santa Barbara County’s 11 basins, and the Los Angeles District got to work. The concern was if another major storm hit and the basins weren’t cleared, more lives would be lost.

Contractors hired by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers break up large boulders out of the Santa Monica basin Feb. 27, 2018, in Montecito, California. The basin was one of the largest and most difficult ones to clear due to the magnitude of water, mud, debris, and boulders that initially filled the basin.

RIGHT PEOPLE AT THE RIGHT TIME “An important factor was bringing the right people in with the right expertise,” said David Kingston, civil engineer with the Los Angeles District’s Emergency Management Branch and acting Emergency Management chief. This included experts who could secure the contracts and necessary permits needed to quickly start the work.

A total of $110.4 million was authorized to USACE for the FEMA mission to remove the debris from Santa Barbara’s 11 basins and 11 channels. A team of USACE engineers, program managers, emergency management, contracting division, and small business experts 105



synchronized efforts to quickly award contracts for the work, said Maj. Scotty Autin, Los Angeles District deputy commander. “One hundred percent of the contracts went to small businesses,” Autin said. “Of those, all but one went to California-based businesses. And the other used solely California-based subcontractors. This allowed nearly all of these funds to remain in the state. Their work ethic and drive were instrumental in helping the entire region return to some sense of normalcy.” Simultaneously, USACE quickly secured the necessary regulatory permits to allow the county to dispose of its debris under the guidelines of the Clean Water Act. “Through the hard work of our agencies and small businesses, most of the basins were cleared out within the first few weeks,” Autin said. “The Corps completed the work on all of the basins and channels April 18.” During the debris-removal mission, more than 400,000 cubic yards of debris – about 30,000 truckloads – was removed from the basins and channels. 106

Tom Fayram, director of the Flood Control District for Santa Barbara County, speaks with representatives from FEMA and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Los Angeles District during a Feb. 27, 2018, meeting at the Santa Monica basin in Santa Barbara County, California.

“To give you some perspective about how big that is, if you lined up each truckload of debris end to end, that line would stretch from Ventura to Oceanside,” Autin said. John Stephens, area engineer for USACE’s office in Palmdale, California, shuddered at the thought of what would have happened had the Cold Springs Creek Basin – the one above Montecito that suffered the greatest amount of casualties – not been there. “The Cold Springs Creek Basin was just completely full of boulders, some the size of small SUVs,” Stephens said. “If that basin wasn’t there, that 24,000 cubic yards of debris would have gone down on



Lt. Gen. Todd Semonite, commanding general of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), talks to a USACE Los Angeles District employee during Semonite’s Jan. 18 visit to Montecito, California, to view the disaster caused by the mudslide.

the community and made things a lot worse. When you think of how important those basins are … they save lives and property.”

FUTURE PARTNERSHIPS USACE is partnering with Santa Barbara and Ventura counties on a Floodplain Management Services study. This will allow USACE to provide a full range of technical services and planning guidance needed to support effective floodplain management. “Our goal is to continue to build and maintain these vital relationships with our partners before, during, and after a disaster,” Autin

said. “One of the ways we can continue to prepare is by working together before a disaster strikes.” Some of the studies could include investigating channel and debris basin capacities and floodplain projection. Future efforts may include conducting feasibility studies for formulation and implementation of flood-risk management projects. The most important aspect of the mission was helping the people of Santa Barbara, said Col. Kirk Gibbs, former Los Angeles District commander, who oversaw the work. “Our No. 1 priority throughout the Santa Barbara debris-removal mission was the life, safety, and welfare of those affected by the disaster and to do everything in our power to aid in the recovery effort,” Gibbs said. “The most rewarding thing was engaging with the people of Santa Barbara who needed our help and were so appreciative of the work that we did to make their community livable and safer again.” n 1 07




Physical debris removal operations were wrapped up in early June 2018, with some 2 million tons of debris – more than double the weight of the iconic Golden Gate Bridge – removed from more than 4,500 properties in seven months. The two-phase process of debris removal was a shared federal and state responsibility. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency moved in first to remove Household Hazardous Waste. USACE and CalRecycle crews were then responsible for clearing the lots of ash and fire-related debris.

In October 2017, wildfires ravaged seven counties in Northern California, claiming 44 lives and destroying approximately 9,000 structures. FEMA called on the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to take on California’s largest debris cleanup since the 1906 San Francisco earthquake.


n the evening of Oct. 8, 2017, more than 250 wildfires erupted and burned throughout Northern California – in Napa, Lake, Mendocino, Solano, Yuba, and Butte counties. In total, officials say nearly 9,000 structures were destroyed and more than 40 people were killed. Damages exceeded $9 billion. The president signed a federal disaster declaration on Oct. 10, setting into motion the largest debris cleanup in the state’s history since the 1906 San Francisco earthquake. As the lead agency for Emergency Support Function #3, FEMA called upon the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE ) to execute the massive program in partnership with the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services. On Oct. 19, USACE’s Sacramento District received the direct federal assistance mission for Private Property Debris Removal (PPDR) in Lake, Mendocino, Napa, and Sonoma counties, with the state conducting operations in the other affected counties.




Although USACE is often assigned debris-removal missions following hurricanes or floods, the Northern California PPDR program has presented new challenges. Typically contractors will remove wet debris from the right of way. In this case, each property owner was required to opt-in to the federal/state debris removal program by submitting a Right of Entry [permit] to their county, which was then reviewed and forwarded to USACE and FEMA. Some of the hardest-hit areas in Sonoma County were densely populated neighborhoods in Santa Rosa like Coffey Park, where nearly 1,300 homes were destroyed. Other parcels were remote and required engineering solutions, like temporary bridge installation, before crews could even reach the sites for assessments and clearance. The process didn’t end when crews cleared the last of the ash and concrete from as site. After scraping 3 to 6 inches of soil, the next step in the process was soil sampling, to ensure that all contaminated material and soil had been removed. If the soil samples came back clear, there were other final prep activities to be completed, including removal of burned vehicles, installation of erosion control, and final quality-assurance check.

Burned-out homes destroyed by the October 2017 wildfires in Northern California. More than 850 USACE employees deployed from across the United States to execute a complex, $1.7 billion recovery mission in under eight months.

Approximately 850 USACE employees deployed from more than 30 districts from nine divisions to support the mission in Northern California. “At the end of the day, the real story here is the people – from our outstanding Corps team members who placed their home-district duties on hold and surged from across the country to Northern California, to our construction contractors who answered our call for this Herculean task, to our federal, state, and local partners who rallied together for the common goal of supporting survivors by rebuilding as soon as possible,” said Brig. Gen. Peter Helmlinger, South Pacific Division commander. “These people are the heroes whose hard work ensured mission success.” n






he San Francisco Bay Area has not had a major flood since 1997. That situation changed with the 2017 California winter storms that caused millions of dollars in damage, and triggered a renewed sense of urgency about the threats posed by sea level rise. It’s a risk compounded by the amount of low-lying shoreline around the bay that is dense with expensive real estate, including homes, sports stadiums, and multibillion dollar businesses – all at risk of flooding by torrential rains and rising seas.


The new BART station in Milpitas is set to open in early 2019. BART is the Bay Area’s rapid transit system.

Some estimates predict sea levels in the Bay Area could rise by as much as 66 inches over the next century. To highlight the urgency of the threat, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) South Pacific Division now considers the San Francisco waterfront, protected by a seawall more than a century old and deemed likely to falter during a major storm surge or earthquake, to be the highest priority for new federal dollars, or what is known as new-start investigations. The structure provides flood protection for downtown neighborhoods and if it fails, the city estimates water damage to property and business could run as high as $35 billion. “The San Francisco seawall is our last defense against the rising sea levels brought on by climate change and if we do not act now, our city will feel the [effect] for generations to come,” said former Mayor Mark Farrell. City voters will be asked in November to approve a bond measure that would raise hundreds of millions of dollars for the project. South of the city in Silicon Valley, some of the world’s most expensive real estate and highly valued companies are considered especially vulnerable, so much so that USACE’s San Francisco District and Santa Clara County are among those conducting a feasibility study to determine the best way to mitigate against the considerable risk of tidal flooding across areas of land protected by little more than nonengineered dikes. Major transportation hubs and highways are among the vital infrastructure considered vulnerable. Runways at San Francisco’s main airport jut out into the bay with little defense against a sea surge.



Nearby is highway 101, a major artery used by hundreds of thousands of motorists daily that is located just feet from the bay and would likely be submerged during a major tidal surge if predictions of sea level rise are realized. “Agencies in the Bay Area recognize that sea level rise will cause coastal flooding in the near future if no action is taken,” said San Francisco District Flood Risk Management Program Manager Craig Conner. “Because of these issues, there has been a renewed interest by local agencies to partner with the Corps on flood risk management projects.” BART, the Bay Area’s rapid transit system, is also at risk of flooding and USACE just completed a $27 million project designed, in part, to protect the system’s Milpitas station which is located on a floodplain. The reinforced levees will also bring flood protection to homes and businesses along several miles of densely populated Upper Berryessa Creek and north San Jose, areas that have experienced three major floods since 1982. Storm damage last year also triggered the repair of the Pajaro River and Salsipuedes Creek levee systems in nearby Santa Cruz County, a $6 million project expected to be completed in several months. n


Above: San Francisco District project managers and engineers oversee a critical phase of the Upper Berryessa Flood Risk Reduction Project as they quickly operate within a 60-hour work window to remove and replace a Union Pacific Railroad Bridge in San Jose. Right: After last year’s heavy rains and flooding across California, USACE, regional leaders, and environmental agencies were moving to address the potential effects of sea level rise.


SOUTHWESTERN DIVISION The Southwestern Division (SWD) oversees hundreds of water resources development and military design and construction projects in all or parts of seven states, including: • 2.3 million acres of public land and water, with an annual program in excess of $2 billion • three of the nation’s “top 10” ports • more than 1,000 miles of navigation channel, including 28 Texas ports – 10 of which are among the nation’s “top 75” • inland navigation mission includes two major waterways, a 423-mile portion of the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway and the 442-mile McClellan-Kerr Arkansas River Navigation System (MKARNS) • 18 locks and dams contribute to the MKARNS total of 8.5 billion in sales, 289 million in taxes, and 55,872 jobs to national economy • the region’s 74 multipurpose reservoirs provide 3.1 trillion gallons annually for municipal and industrial water supply and satisfy the demand for 1.8 million households and 4.5 million people • the region’s reservoirs hold about 33.2 million acre feet of flood storage that’s about 13,900 Dallas Cowboys stadiums • reservoirs have prevented more than $150 billion (as of FY 16) in damages over the life of the projects SOUTHWESTERN DIVISION 1100 Commerce St., Suite 831 Dallas, TX 75242-1317 (469) 487-7007 swd.usace.army.mil facebook.com/swdusace/ twitter.com/usace_swd youtube.com/USACESWD FORT WORTH DISTRICT 819 Taylor St. Fort Worth, TX 76102 (817) 886-1306 swf.usace.army.mil/ facebook.com/usacefortworth/ twitter.com/usace_fortworth youtube.com/user/USACESWF GALVESTON DISTRICT 2000 Fort Point Rd. Galveston, TX 77550 (409) 766-3004 swg.usace.army.mil facebook.com/GalvestonDistrict twitter.com/USACEgalveston youtube.com/user/ GalvestonDistrict


LITTLE ROCK DISTRICT 700 West Capitol Ave. Little Rock, AR 72201 (501) 324-5551 swl.usace.army.mil facebook.com/littlerockusace twitter.com/#!/usacelittlerock youtube.com/user/ USACELittleRock instagram.com/usace.littlerock/ TULSA DISTRICT Citiplex Towers 2488 E 81st St., #188 Tulsa, OK 74137 (918) 669-7366 swt.usace.army.mil/ facebook.com/usacetulsa/ twitter.com/usacetulsa youtube.com/user/usacetulsa

• second-largest producer of hydropower in USACE; 18 hydropower plants produced enough energy to power 523,925 homes for one year • revenue from the power produced returned $150 million to the U.S. Treasury • No. 1 in USACE in both recreation visitation and fees collected • 55 million visitors at 87 operating projects located in five states contributing $2.2 billion in visitor spending annually to the regional economy • 19,000 jobs created within 30 miles of SWD’s lakes • more than $58 million to the U.S. Treasury from recreation fees • military missions include all or parts of five states, serving nine major Army and nine major Air Force installations, covering almost a half million square miles • delivered 176 projects valued at more than $4 billion in the last five years to the U.S. military and interagency partners




he iconic 1984 film Ghostbusters’ famous moniker is “Who you gonna call? Ghostbusters!” And although the team from the movie may prove best for that fictional situation, in the case of hurricane, wildfire, floods, or other calamity recovery the Southwestern Division’s regional response efforts stand ready with teams from the Fort Worth, Galveston, Little Rock, and Tulsa districts. Each district has trained teams of individuals in their respective disciplines to mount an attack against any disaster that may strike. The emergency management mission for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is to fully prepare for and effectively respond to natural and man-made disasters. Disasters thrown the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) way has been unprecedented in the years 2016 through 2018. Under the National Response Framework (NRF), USACE is the primary agency for providing technical assistance for Emergency Support Function

Program analyst Julie Bentley, from Fort Worth District’s Engineering Construction and Support Office, enters data into USACE’s ENGLink during debris removal operations in the Sonoma County Recovery Field Office located at Rohnert Park, California. Debris removal operations were conducted in four Northern California counties affected by devastating wildfires that began in October 2017.

(ESF) 3, Public Works and Engineering, when given mission assignments from the Federal Emergency Management Agency. This unified and coordinated structure allows for scalable response when requested by states or tribal nations following a man-made or natural disaster. The four districts within the Southwestern Division Emergency Management Offices rely upon internal and external emergency management “communities of practice” partners to meet the response and recovery mission. Over the past few years, the Southwestern Division and district teams deployed numerous members to support the NRF and National Disaster Recovery Framework operations. The Fort Worth District is also home to and recently deployed one of its eight specialized National Response Teams for debris removal in support of recent Mississippi River flooding, and houses one of nine emergency command and control vehicles. Additionally, under the Flood Control and Coastal Emergency Act, Public Law 84-99, the Fort Worth 113

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Safety specialist Benoit Palmer from the Fort Worth District confers with a contractor during debris removal operations in Clearlake, California. Debris removal operations were being accomplished in Lake County as a result of the devastating wildfires that began in October 2017. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers removed debris under an assignment from FEMA. The consolidated debris removal program was a coordinated effort by FEMA, USACE, and the Texas Governor’s Office of Emergency Services, removing the largest amount of debris in the state since the 1906 earthquake.

Emergency Management Office is prepared to provide temporary assistance to support state and local authorities for flood fight and repair/ construction efforts under the Rehabilitation and Inspection Program.

Calendar year (CY) 2017 was a very active emergency operations year as many Fort Worth District team members deployed to support many disaster responses and recovery efforts. The Fort Worth District provided support to numerous natural disasters which included hurricanes Harvey, Irma, Maria, and Nate as well as the two California wildfire events. To date, the Fort Worth District deployed a total of 125 military and civilian personnel to support response and recovery operations. Additionally, the district procured and distributed approximately 1,250,000 sand bags and filled 170 ENGLink taskers with a cumulative total of 5,896 manpower days, with 12 employees deployed in excess of 100 days for civil recovery missions. In addition to supporting the above deployments, all Fort Worth District Emergency Management and Security Branch personnel deployed in some capacity for a total of 432 days while continuing all day-to-day district responsibilities and support to other deployed personnel. Under Civil Operations and Readiness Activities the Fort Worth District held a Hurricane Table Top Exercise and participated in the following national-level conferences and exercises: FEMA/USACE Senior Leader’s Seminar, ESF #3 Assistant Team Leader Conference, and the ARDENT Sentry and Cascadia Rising National Level Exercise 2018. Regional activities include the quarterly FEMA Regional Interagency Steering Committee meetings and the SWD Hurricane ROC Drill. Also completed were 25 Emergency Action Plan Exercises and Drills for CY 2018. All responses, plans, and EOC Standard Operating Procedures were updated and approved during CY 2018. As the above demonstrates that infamous call may be said for various reasons but when disaster strikes and the need for recovery begins, the call is often answered by the men and women of the Southwestern Division districts who voluntarily deploy to assist in the recovery process. n



he federal initiatives for energy efficiency continue to be prevalent in the nation, affecting the infrastructure in which we work and live, and the tools our communities use every day. These initiatives are in response to Executive Order 13834, which requires the federal government to promote building energy conservation and management, improve agency water use efficiency, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. To support the requirement, agencies develop baseline data for setting and tracking sustainability goals, and

provide an annual report of the results to the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) and the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). This has opened the door to more opportunities for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) to meet many energy challenges facing federal agencies. Executive Order 13834 requires OMB to prepare scorecards on federal agency performance on energy efficiency and sustainability. The annual scorecards are based on data, metrics, and scoring criteria that agencies 115



provide regarding their energy management activities, energy and water savings, greenhouse gas emissions, and associated cost reductions. Performance is assigned a green, yellow, or red score for each goal area. To meet the Sustainable Federal Building (SFB) goal on the scorecard, each agency provides SFB data in accordance with the Federal Real Property Profile (FRPP) requirements documenting whether or not the building has been assessed and whether or not it meets the SFB guiding principles. The guiding principles focus on five areas for both new construction and existing buildings: employ integrated design, assessment, operation and management principles in new or existing buildings, optimize energy performance, protect and conserve water, enhance indoor environmental quality and reduce environmental impact of materials. The USACE sustainability scorecard currently shows “red” and zero percent complete for the SFB compliance goal, meaning that the agency was not on track to attain compliance with the guiding principles. USACE implemented an SFB compliance program in October 2014 by adopting UFC 1-200-02, High Performance and Sustainable Building Requirements, as the USACE guidance on obtaining guiding principle compliance. Leading the charge in this national effort, is the Fort Worth District. The district is conducting sustainable building assessments for selected USACE-owned buildings throughout the United States.


Volunteers from the California Native Plant Society plant native species outside of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers San Francisco Bay Model Visitor Center that will require minimum watering. This meets the Federal Energy Management Program guiding principle metric #8, “outdoor water use,” which calls for water-efficient landscaping, limiting potable water use.

Albert Rice, the Fort Worth District’s sustainability project coordinator, said USACE currently has approximately 312 buildings totaling 6.2 million square feet. By fiscal year 2025, USACE is targeting 0.9 million square feet of sustainable federal buildings for compliance. To date, the district has assessed more than 124 sites at seven districts and divisions, such as the San Francisco Bay Model and the New Orleans District Headquarters – the largest USACE-owned building. “The assessments are the first step in getting all USACE-owned buildings over 5,000 square feet assessed. After the assessments, recommendations for obtaining compliance are provided to the project coordinators. Cost savings and energy efficiency go hand in hand and are key goals of the USACE Sustainability Program,” added Rice. USACE is and will continue its commitment to compliance with applicable environmental and energy statutes, regulations, and executive orders. n


FORT WORTH DISTRICT’S MILITARY PROGRAMS Supporting the Needs and Well-being of the Military and Their Families BY RHONDA PAIGE, For t Wor th District



he U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Fort Worth District has one of the widest “footprints” when it comes to military projects. Those projects directly affect and support our military members and their families, and bring an added personal reward for all team members involved in them. The Fort Worth District’s Military Program is comprised of a dedicated and multi-disciplined team supporting 13 Army and Air Force installations and other military customers throughout Texas, Louisiana, and New Mexico. The district manages a robust design and military construction (MILCON) and reimbursable program, totaling $6.8 billion in active projects. “Our Fort Worth District is able to deliver multiple projects and contracts to the installation with a focus on maintaining the existing infrastructure and updating facilities and its supporting elements,” said Col. Kenneth N. Reed, commander, Fort Worth District. Major projects of the Fort Worth District Military Programs Mission include: • Corpus Christi Army Depot Hangar 4. This project will culminate as the home of the UH-60 Blackhawk recapitalization program. • Fort Bliss Replacement Hospital. The replacement hospital will be a new 1.1 million-square-foot Medical Center to serve the growing active-duty and retiree population in and around the Fort Bliss and El Paso area. The campus will include a main hospital, inpatient and outpatient clinics, and administrative building, research building, central utility plant, two access control points, and surface parking with more than 4,000 spaces. • Fort Hood Simulations Center. This project is for a 145,585-square-foot Mission Training Complex (MTC), a Security Access Facility (SAF) and Tactical Operations Center pads. The center will support individual and battle staff training, with a focus on command and control operations. • Joint Base San Antonio, Lackland Air Force Base – Airmen Training Complex (ATC). The ATC is currently the Air Force’s largest MILCON program, spanning 10 fiscal years. The ATC MILCON Program will provide state-of-the-art facilities to support the 8.5-week Basic Military Training (BMT) program for up to 40,000 Air Force trainees annually. The project also has the great distinction of being recognized as the 2017 Project Delivery Team of the Year.

The new San Antonio Military Medical Center (SAMMC) Hyperbaric Medical Facility addition is located at SAMMC’s main entrance and provides care for some of the most seriously injured service members.

• Joint Base San Antonio, San Antonio Military Medical Center (SAMMC), Hyperbaric Medical Addition. The hyperbaric chamber project provides state-of-the-art hyperbaric treatment capabilities for wound care, decompression sickness, arterial gas embolisms, carbon monoxide poisoning, and numerous adjunctive treatments. One of the many outstanding benefits to patients is that the chamber can serve multiple patients. • The Fort Worth District will continue to push the bar of its military programs’ mission, striving to improve processes and execution methods to maximize the quality of facilities for Soldiers, airmen, and their families. n

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AN ARMY OF VOLUNTEERS USACE Reflects on the Anniversary of Hurricane Harvey

Wanda Hollman and her husband in high spirits outside of their home Sept. 3, 2017, after many USACE volunteers and community members helped them repair the damages caused by Hurricane Harvey’s flood waters.

BY BREE ANA MOORE, Galveston District


ne year after Hurricane Harvey dropped more than 60 inches of rainfall over the course of a few days, making it the most significant rainfall event in United States history, staff at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Galveston District continue to maintain hurricane preparedness and stay “Corps Strong” as they reflect on the acts of individual and collective heroism within the district during Hurricane Harvey. Harvey revealed an enormous sense of pride and community as we witnessed family, friends, co-workers, neighbors, and even strangers coming together to help one another through the storm. Out of this generosity and kindness, the phrase “Houston Strong” was born as a reminder that Houston is a resilient city. That same sense of care, community support, and generosity bloomed among USACE employees at the Galveston District as an enduring symbol of the professionalism and dedication of USACE employees doing their duty and serving their community. During the height of Hurricane Harvey flooding, Galveston District’s workforce never stopped conducting operations and emergency response missions even when they had families and staff


that were tending to their own homes that were flooded. USACE employees were both victims and responders in this unprecedented event. As 911 call centers started to get overwhelmed with requests for rescue, USACE employees started fielding calls from their families stating they were trapped due to rising water and needed help evacuating. “We had to take quick action. So we coordinated calls to first-response agencies to rescue the families” said Alicia Rea, Galveston District’s emergency operations chief. “We also contacted other USACE team members with high vehicles to pick up our fellow team members and took them to a safe, dry place.” In total, 67 USACE employees and their families were evacuated. Eddie Irigoyen, project manager, Galveston District, recalled the experience of his house getting flooded. “Our home was inundated with a foot of rain for 8 hours when my neighbors rescued my family with an inflatable raft,” said Irigoyen. “When I contacted my co-workers at the Corps, they sent someone to get my family and me and took us to a hotel and supplied us with food and water. A year later I am still so grateful


I work for an organization full of people who care so deeply for one another.” Wanda Hollman, a program analyst with the USACE Galveston District, had up to 2 feet of water in her home while just outside her home it came up to her chest. With the power out and her phone’s battery dead, her family was unable to get her out of her home until days later. “I had my peers at the Corps calling me to ask if I was OK and if I needed help,” said Hollman. “They sent someone to pick us up and put us in a hotel. We were in that hotel for 3.5 months because our home was uninhabitable.” Galveston District employees worked tirelessly until all USACE personnel and their families were out of harm’s way. However, the help didn’t stop there. USACE employees Andria Davis and Ron Wooten set up a task force to help those team members following the aftermath of the flooding. “Andria and I spoke of ways we could commission those who were unaffected to help our Corps families who were in need of help,” said Wooten. “With her amazing organizational skills and knowledge of how all this works up here, Andria organized the Safe Haven response [a government program to assist evacuating USACE employees].” Following the storm, Davis and Wooten rallied volunteers together to help rebuild the flood-damaged homes of fellow USACE members along with other homes around the community. USACE volunteers and community members helped restore more than 30 homes. Many members used annual leave to help those in need. USACEwide, employees donated annual leave to those who needed time to rebuild their lives. “When the water had finally receded from our neighborhood, Byron Williams, chief of project management, came to our home to help assess the damages and give recommendations for gutting and

During Hurricane Harvey, USACE’s Debby Jones, took this photo of her flooded living room. Water rose 4.5 feet inside the house.

construction,” said Hollman. “I then receive a call from Ron Wooten who told me that he was bringing a crew in to help us clean and gut our home. It meant a lot because we have no family here.” A year later, Hollman wipes tears from her eyes as the memories from that storm and the aftermath still stir up many emotions. She says there aren’t words that can express her level of gratitude. “I haven’t cried about it in a long time,” said Hollman. “I just learned that when the chips are down, the Corps is truly a united family and you can’t put a price on that. I know now that through hell and high water the Corps was there for me. If you are Corps, you are family and I’m there for you.” Wooten echoed Hollman’s sentiments. “I think it’s important that we take care of our family here so they can continue to serve the most important needs of our country and the mission of the Corps,” said Wooten. “Thankfully, we work in a unique District, a place where people love one another and practice kindness. A place where the calls of those in need will be met by an Army of volunteers, offering their selfless service as they put people first.” In the aftermath of this natural disaster, 838 USACE members from multiple divisions across the country voluntarily deployed in response to Hurricane Harvey. The selfless service of those volunteers and many of the unsung heroes during this crisis elevated the level of camaraderie throughout the district and instilled a real sense of family and pride among those at USACE’s Galveston District. Today, USACE Galveston continues to remain “Corps Strong” in both hurricane preparedness and resilience. n 119




BY MILES BROWN, Lit tle Rock District

Arnold Fisher, the honorary chairman of the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund, middle right, cuts the ribbon to officially open the Intrepid Spirit Center on Camp Pendleton, California, April 4, 2018. The Intrepid Spirit Center will work together with Naval Hospital Camp Pendleton to treat traumatic brain, physical, and psychological injuries. This location is one of nine centers being opened nationwide.


upporting and sustaining our warfighters takes more than new weapons systems or the latest technology. The Soldiers, sailors, airmen, and Marines stationed stateside and overseas also need the best medical care and medical facilities available. The Little Rock District is making sure they have exactly what they need. The Medical Support Team (MST) in Little Rock, Arkansas, is one of three MSTs supporting the Army and Air Force medical sustainment, restoration, and modernization mission. The team’s mission is to manage the design-build construction and initial outfitting for medical facilities supporting military members and their families. The range of work covers everything from the modernization of a small dental clinic


to the complete renovation of a major military hospital and everything in between. The Navy and Defense Health Agency (DHA) also often request the MST to provide initial outfitting support for Navy and DHA medical facilities. The support team is divided into two branches – the Medical Programs Branch and the Air Force Medical Programs Branch. The Medical Programs Branch supports Army Medical Command and provides initial outfitting for the Army, Navy, and DHA. The Air Force team handles the same duties for Air Force facilities. According to Craig Pierce, the district’s deputy for programs and project management, “The work of these teams, consisting of engineers, program managers, contracting specialists, and more,


SOUTHWESTERN DIVISION The Eglin Air Force Base (AFB) “Invisible Wounds” temporary clinic opened Aug. 30, 2018. The 96th Medical Group at Eglin AFB has been designated as the Air Force hub for the new Invisible Wounds mission.

ensures our warfighters have top-notch health care facilities to meet their needs. They administer the program from developing the scope of work to monitoring quality assurance at every stage to take these complex and lengthy procurements from initial concept to completed project. The team does this in partnership with construction quality-assurance experts from the local geographic district.” The Medical Support Team has the unique ability to react quickly to a changing landscape. The recent need for increased capacity in the traumatic brain injury (TBI) and psychological health (PH) diagnosis, treatment, clinical training, and related services across all the military services is a perfect example of the team’s flexibility. The initial outfitting team recently completed a multimillion-dollar contract for the new Intrepid Spirit Traumatic Brain Injury Center at Camp Pendleton, California. The team ensured all the stateof-the-art diagnoses and treatment equipment as well as office equipment and furnishings were installed in accordance with the contract specifications. The $12 million facility, which opened in April, offers interdisciplinary evaluations of service members using clinical, laboratory, and imaging resources to guide treatment. The new 25,000-square-foot center is the seventh TBI treatment facility in the National Intrepid Center of Excellence network, spanning the country. The Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund addresses the critical need

of immediate diagnosis and early treatment of TBI by funding and opening these Intrepid Spirit Centers on military bases around the country. The Air Force Medical Programs Branch also recently completed the Air Force hub for invisible wounds care at Eglin Air Force Base, Florida. This construction project needed to be completed quickly to meet a growing patient load with the same team-based and holistic concept as the original National Intrepid Center of Excellence at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland. The solution was a temporary facility consisting of 24 modular units installed and outfitted with equipment in a matter of 12 months instead of a multiyear military construction project time line. This innovative approach met the Air Force’s needs and more importantly met the needs of the warfighters returning for warzones with the quality treatment space and equipment designed for patients with complex medical conditions including TBI, PH, chronic pain, and related issues. These are just two examples of the dozens of projects currently overseen by the Medical Support Team in the Little Rock District. Over the past decade, the team has awarded more than $2 billion in medical projects. “The dedicated professionals supporting the Corps’ medical support mission strive every day to deliver the best medical facilities across all theaters of operation supporting our nation’s warfighters and their families today and well into the future,” said Pierce. n



inker Air Force Base (AFB) in Oklahoma City employs more than 26,000 military and civilian personnel. The installation is the largest single-site employer in the state of Oklahoma with an annual statewide economic impact of $3.51 billion, creating an estimated 33,000 secondary jobs. The Air Force owns 4,048 acres, leases 810 acres, and has 642 acres of easements, with 458 total buildings. The 72nd Air Base Wing provides base installation and support services for the headquarters, Air Force Sustainment Center,

the Oklahoma City Air Logistics Complex, and 45 associate units assigned to six major commands, including the largest flying wing in Air Combat Command. Tinker is also home to the 507th Air Refueling Wing, which currently flies KC-135’s aerial refueling aircraft and the 552nd Air Control Wing that flies the E-3 Airborne Warning and Control Systems (AWACS) aircraft. Tinker’s largest organization is the Oklahoma City Air Logistics Complex, which houses depot maintenance for 121



Tulsa District contractors place a portion of the newly erected air traffic control tower cab on top of the tower skeletal structure under construction at Tinker Air Force Base, July 13, 2018. The new, more modern 130-foot tower will replace the old, smaller, 100-foot tower that will be demolished once the new tower has been certified for functionality.

Air Force, Navy, Air National Guard, and Air Force Reserve aircraft. This depot is the largest most expansive of three depot repair complexes in the Air Force Materiel Command and provides depot maintenance on the C/KC-135, B-1B, B-52, and E-3 aircraft expanded phase maintenance on the Navy E-6 aircraft, as well as maintenance, repair, and overhaul of F-100, F-101, F-108, F-110, F-118, F-119, and TF33 engines for the Air Force, Air Force Reserve, Air National Guard, Navy, and Foreign Military Sales. The Air Force Civil Engineering Center provided the scope of work to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Tulsa District for a new 130-foot tower that will also include a 500-square-foot air traffic control simulator facility. The new facility will be modern, efficient, and appropriately

sized to house system components directly supporting the mission. Initial civil site layout on the tower began in January 2018, with the overall facility size established at 8,900 square feet upon completion. Physical completion is expected to be around March 2019. Once complete, the 85th Engineering Installation Squadron from Keesler Air Force Base, Mississippi, will install all airfield communications, cable antenna, and translators needed to control aircraft approaching, departing, and transiting. “It’s exciting for the Corps to be able to build this control tower for Tinker Air Force Base. We had a lot of lessons learned on the Vance AFB tower, and we were lucky to have some of the same personnel working on this project,” stated Kendrick Adams, Tulsa District’s project engineer. “This control tower will be the most modern structure possible and will closely resemble the tower that the Tulsa District recently completed at Vance AFB near Enid, Oklahoma.” The new air traffic control tower will be equipped with a storm shelter that will be located on the 1st floor and may be of interest to many because Oklahoma sits in the heart of what is known as “tornado alley.” The design meets sustainable requirements and provides for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) “Silver” certification. Final construction costs after executed modifications will be around $14.5 million. Construction is approximately 32 percent complete as of Aug. 15, 2018. The existing air traffic control tower was designed and built in 1970 and provides less than 50 percent of the required space to support today’s mission. The tower cab, by today’s standards, is too small and cramped to accommodate all of the occupants. The old 100-foot-tall tower and simulator building will be demolished after the new tower has been certified for functionality. n

CONSTRUCTION OF THE KC-46A DEPOT MAINTENANCE HANGARS Infrastructure for the Next-generation Refueler BY PRESTON L . CHASTEEN, Tulsa District


fter celebrating more than 60 years of KC-135 depot maintenance at Tinker Air Force Base (AFB), Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, the time has come to transition to the newest of the Air Force’s aerial refuelers. In July 2016, the U.S. Air Force, alongside state and Oklahoma City officials, formally broke ground on the Sustainment Campus for its incoming fleet of KC-46A Pegasus aircraft. The Air Force ultimately intends to replace its fleet of aging KC-135 Stratotankers in a three-phased effort, beginning with the KC-46A Pegasus.

According to Boeing, the KC-46A aerial refueler boasts 62,000 pounds of thrust with a wingspan of 156 feet, 1 inch; a 165-foot, 10-inch fuselage length; and height of 52 feet, 10 inches. Boasting 65,000-pound maximum cargo capacity the aircraft also has an impressive 212,299 fuel capacity. Constructed on a Boeing 767 airframe, the Pegasus is taller, longer, and has a larger wingspan than the 707-based airframe of the KC-135 Stratotanker. The larger, more sophisticated aircraft requires new hangars and facilities for depot maintenance. In 2016, the Tulsa District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, embarked 123

upon a multiphase construction project to support the maintenance operations for the KC-46A at Tinker AFB. Construction is expected to run through fiscal year 2029, with final construction providing hangar space for 14 separate KC-46A aircraft. “It’s a great opportunity to see an entire project build out all at once for a new platform having that complete campus as one progressive project being done phased throughout the fiscal years gives us a unique opportunity to build something from scratch,” said Isabelle Rico, Tulsa District resident engineer. “Usually you’re trying to fit stuff in where you can and that has its drawbacks. Building in a consolidated area gives us synergy and gives us the opportunity to plan well and execute well. It’s nice to have a clean slate and it’s a faster, cleaner, more organized process,” added Rico. As Rico puts it, “The sheer magnitude of the project brings something to the community from the standpoint of the labor it [requires]. I think anytime you bring a new platform [into] a community, it adds to the surrounding economy.” Currently, construction is underway on one-bay and two-bay hangar facilities as well as a KC-46A systems integration laboratory. Work on the one-bay maintenance dock began in September 2016, with an estimated completion date of February 2019. Final cost on the single-bay facility will be just under $35 million. The two-bay hangar currently under construction is scheduled to be completed in September 2019. Total cost on this facility will be nearly $121 million.



Tulsa District contractors work to construct a two-bay hangar for the Boeing KC-46A at Tinker Air Force Base, Aug. 15, 2018. Constructed on a Boeing 767 airframe, the Pegasus is taller, longer, and has a larger wingspan than the 707-based airframe of the KC-135 Stratotanker. Construction on the multiphase KC-46A project at Tinker is expected to run through FY 2029, with final construction providing hangar space for 14 KC-46A aircraft.

The system integration laboratory is expected to have a total cost of more than $12 million and is projected to be completed in March 2019. n



ltus Air Force Base (AFB) is home to the 97th Air Mobility Wing (AMW). The 97th AMW plans and executes C-17, KC-135 formal school initial and advanced-specialty training programs for up to 3,000 students annually. In addition, the 97th AMW sustains C-17, KC-135 airland, airdrop, and air-refueling mobility forces, and provides air traffic control and weather forecasting for flying operations. In May 2018, the Tulsa District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, began replacing the assault landing zone at Altus in Oklahoma. Pilots at Altus AFB use this runway to train in assault landing zone procedures. The overall contract is for the demolition and repair of the assault landing zone (ALZ) runway with Portland cement concrete


(PCC). The repair will include replacing the existing Asphaltic cement concrete (ACC) with PCC. Requirements consist of 41,000 square yards of runway, 20,212 square yards of shoulder, and 9,675 square yards of over-run area. During the 152-day construction phase of the Altus ALZ, multiple features of work will be accomplished. Work will include PCC demolition, ACC demolition, excavation, grading, electrical work, underdrain inspection, asphalt drainage layer installation, PCC paving, asphalt paving shoulder/over-run, and airfield markings. Core samples were taken as part of the evaluation of the initial concrete test section. Three days after completion of the test section,

eight core samples at least 6 inches in diameter by full-depth cut from selected points were taken. The cores will be evaluated for surface paste, uniformity of aggregate distribution, segregation, voids, and thickness. Concrete will be produced for the Altus ALZ project from one of Altus’ two Vince Hagan batch plants. The Hagan plants are identical, with a capacity of 1.0-11.0 cubic yards per cycle. “The plant is complete with feed bins, conveyors, weigh scales, cement and fly ash storage, admixture storage and control, batch mixer, and a control shack. A portable generator is provided for site power with access to various chillers and water heaters for temperature control if required,” said Aaron Trice, Tulsa District site quality assurance representative. According to Trice, “A portable asphalt plant has also been erected on site at Altus AFB to complete the asphalt paving requirements of the contract. The plant is complete with feed bins, asphalt oil storage, lime and mineral filler silos, load-out hopper with certified weigh scales, and bag house for particulate control.” “With the presence of on-site plants, a construction site will benefit from a constant supply of concrete and asphalt. A steady supply of both is key to ensuring the construction site is as productive as possible,” stated Trice. “Relying on a concrete supplier to deliver concrete to your site can result in delays. With your own on-site plants, you can ensure that your material is mixed to the exact specifications and quantities required.” The new assault landing zone at Altus AFB is expected to be complete in January 2019, with a total cost just under $12 million. n



A Tulsa District contractor operates a self-propelled RS-650 Reclaimer/ Stabilizer to mix loose soil and material in preparation of constructing an assault landing zone runway on Altus Air Force Base, Oklahoma, July 20, 2018. The reclaimer is also used for stabilizing subgrade material by mixing existing soil with water from a connected water truck.




he Red River Chloride Control Project reduces chloride contamination in the Red River. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Tulsa District pumps the brine-contaminated water to a storage reservoir northwest of Truscott, Texas. The water in the Red River is unfit to drink and also unsuitable for agricultural and industrial uses. The salt source near Guthrie, Texas, on the South Fork of the Wichita River is pooled up using an inflatable dam at the Bateman Pump Station. From the Bateman Pump Station, the salt water is pumped through a 22-mile-long pipeline into Truscott Brine Lake. The reservoir is totally contained with no means of discharging water. The surface area is large enough that it evaporates as much water as is being pumped into the lake. n

Civil engineering technician Richard McCanlies (left), USACE Tulsa District, discusses pipeline operations with public affairs specialist Preston Chasteen, Aug. 9, 2018, at the Red River Chloride Control Project, which was designed to reduce chloride contamination of the Red River.


TRANSATLANTIC DIVISION TRANSATLANTIC DIVISION P.O. Box 2250 Winchester, VA 22604-1450 dll-cetad-pa@usace.army.mil (540) 667-3173 www.tad.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/USACETransatlantic Division MIDDLE EAST DISTRICT P.O. Box 2250 Winchester, VA 22604-1450 dll-cetam-pao@usace.army.mil (540) 665-4085 www.tam.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Middle East District AFGHANISTAN DISTRICT HQ-USACE-TAA (BAGRAM) APO AE 09354-1053 dll-cetaa-pao@usace.army.mil (540) 542-1508 www.tad.usace.army.mil/About/ TransatlanticAfghanistanDistrict/ www.facebook.com/USACEAfghanDistrict/ twitter.com/USACEinAfg



very project, every program, and every task supports the warfighter every day. That’s the role of the Transatlantic Division (TAD) as it directly supports U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) and other federal and partner agencies in a volatile operational area that spans the 20 countries of the Middle East and Central Asia. TAD’s work includes provision of facilities for U.S. military forces, support to other U.S. government agencies such as the State Department, engineering services to foreign government agencies under the Defense Department’s Foreign Military Sales program, and construction of facilities in Afghanistan to promote stability. The work is carried out by a division headquarters, two districts, and two task forces. Each of those subordinate organizations is unique with differing funding streams, customers, and objectives, according to Col. (P) Mark Quander, TAD commander. “Yet they complement each other by providing the necessary engineering and construction services required by warfighting commanders to carry out their missions in that area of operations,” he said. “Our role is to deliver the program at the speed of relevance to our stakeholders. That means getting that project to the customer as promised or even early,” Quander said. “When we deliver a project, we also


deliver a capability and decision space to the warfighter. That’s critical in the fluid environment in which they work.”

TASK FORCES AND DISTRICTS Task Force Essayons, established in May 2017, provides planning, engineering, design, environmental support, construction management, and real estate services for deployed units engaged in defeating the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). The supported unit, Combined Joint Task Force-Operation Inherent Resolve, works with partner nations to help set the conditions for regional stability. Task Force Essayons, located in Iraq and Kuwait – helps provide cost-effective facilities and services from which operations are conducted. Projects include base camp master plans, site assessments, government estimates, infrastructure assessments, storage facilities, fencing, classrooms and schools, warehouse renovations, installation of pre-engineered buildings, airfield renovations, ranges, and roads. “Task Force Essayons has captured the essence of being nimble and agile,” Quander said. “The team recently took a project from award to beneficial occupancy in 120 days. They are turning over projects before the users are redeploying from theater. That’s incredible speed.”



Mosul Dam Task Force was established in September 2016 following an agreement between the governments of Iraq and the United States for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) to serve as the engineer and technical adviser to the Iraq Ministry of Water Resources for its grouting contract with the Italian firm TREVI to stabilize Mosul Dam. Mosul Dam, the largest earthen dam in Iraq, sits on a soluble geologic foundation, requiring continuous grouting as part of the regular maintenance operation. Because maintenance was neglected when the area was under ISIS control, once liberated, the international community responded to the need to re-establish grouting to prevent catastrophic failure of the dam. The Mosul Dam Task Force works closely with Iraqi, Italian, and U.S. government contractors and agencies – all focused on improving the dam’s structural foundation. The project has required enterprise expertise with more than 85 civilian and military members from across USACE deploying to serve on the task force and more than 350 USACE civilians contributing through reachback. Chief of Engineers Lt. Gen. Todd T. Semonite has said of the project, “We are very proud to team with our international and interagency partners to achieve important outcomes.”

The Transatlantic Division works throughout the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility. Here, TAD leaders are briefed by members of the Mosul Dam Task Force about progress on the grouting contract, awarded by the government of Iraq, to stabilize the dam.

Afghanistan District, a contingency district, has existed since 2004. It supports Operations Resolute Support and Freedom’s Sentinel by accomplishing construction for U.S. Forces-Afghanistan, for the Combined Security Transition Command-Afghanistan, and for the departments of Defense and State to complete projects authorized under the Afghan Infrastructure Fund program. The work includes projects for the Afghan Air Force modernization, Afghan special security forces and National Army and police, the Women’s Participation Program, and the Northern and Southern Electrical Power Systems. “Just a few years ago, we were expecting the Afghanistan program to wind down,” said Scott Sawyer, chief, Programs Integration Division. “Today, barring unforeseen circumstances, we expect that program to continue for the next four years with an estimate of $100 million in construction placement annually.” A key component of the USACE program in Afghanistan has been to use predominantly Afghan-owned companies in the construction 1 27



programs and to have Afghan quality-assurance staff assist in construction oversight – all in an effort to build skilled human capital. While these task forces and the Afghanistan District operate in a singular area, the Middle East District has existed in a variety of configurations for nearly 70 years. The district’s programs primarily consist of U.S. military construction projects that support U.S. forces across the CENTCOM area of operations (AOR) and projects undertaken through the Department of Defense’s security assistance program, working with allied partner nations throughout the Middle East. These programs currently have a total value of approximately $3.5 billion. Additionally, the district houses the USACE Technical Center of Expertise for Aircraft Hangar Fire Protection, the Center of Standardization for Nonpermanent Facilities, and the USACE Contingency Deployment Center, which provides a one-stop shop for recruiting, deploying, and supporting USACE personnel who deploy to TAD contingency locations. “When our military and allied-nation mission partners in the CENTCOM AOR partner with the Middle East District, they are not only getting our entire team of professionally licensed engineers, architects, program managers, and support personnel, they are getting the entire depth and breadth of USACE enterprise capabilities,” said Col. Stephen Bales, district commander. “Additionally, they are getting the regional expertise, historical knowledge, and relationships we have built through our long-term history in the Middle East. Quite simply, we are the ‘go-to’ source for support in one of the most challenging construction environments in the world.” 128

Transatlantic Division brought together its district and task force commanders and leaders for a strategic planning session to examine workload projections, discuss customer requirements, and develop metrics. Here, Maj. Gen. Anthony C. Funkhouser, USACE deputy commanding general for Military and International Operations, addresses participants.

TAD IN TRANSITION Engage, Execute, Evolve – TAD’s strategic imperatives. Ready, healthy, world-class governing metrics – to increase TAD’s overall effectiveness. Established in 2009 as a contingency division, in recent years, TAD has operated with an even mix of permanent and temporary positions. The high number of temporary positions affected recruitment and retention, and that revolving personnel door affected program execution. That is changing now, with the addition of 30 permanent positions to the manpower allotment. That change is helping to revolutionize the way the division operates, according to Sawyer. “The additional staffing and having the ability to recruit for permanent people give us the ability to better and more fully function as a division staff,” Sawyer said. “This increases our capacity to engage with stakeholders and open those vertical and horizontal lines of communication. This expanded level of engagement helps us nest more fully in future operations, and that enables us to respond more quickly to contingencies in the USCENTCOM area.” Sawyer said that timely engagement sets up the division for successful execution to meet stakeholder expectations. To address performance, TAD recently established outcome-oriented, performance-based metrics that address organizational


readiness, health, and program cost and schedule targets. The metrics provide an analysis framework to determine the cause and effect of any deviance from performance goals and standards, explore potential solutions to problems, and drive other initiatives to fully evolve. Evolve, the third leg of the imperatives stool – requires implementing strategies and actions to remain an enduring organization capable of responding to changing conditions and contingency missions. “The ability to evolve amplifies the chief’s [of engineers] direction to revolutionize the Corps,” Sawyer said. “As we move toward being more agile, processes, systems, and technology provide great enabling capabilities, but if we are to deliver quality projects at affordability and speed, it must be underpinned by quality people,” Quander said. “The investment we place in our people will remain instrumental towards delivering the program for our stakeholders in this very dynamic environment. “I’m excited about the talent in TAD and the talent coming into TAD. This talent will drive TAD, and these people will solidify TAD’s identity well into the future. “The addition of permanent staffing is significant,” Quander continued, “as it signifies the [USACE] headquarters recognition that TAD has an enduring mission in direct support of USCENTCOM – not just for USACE but for the Army as well.” n

“Each person on this Task Force volunteered to deploy and put themselves in harm’s way to serve their nation at a critical time. Their expertise is making an enormous difference in the health, safety, welfare, and combat effectiveness of America’s sons and daughters serving in Iraq and Syria, who, along with our coalition partners, are decisively winning the fight against ISIS.”



ask Force Essayons (TFE) provides engineering and construction services to the U.S. and coalition forces of Combined Joint Task Force-Operation Inherent Resolve (CJTF-OIR). Since activation on May 19, 2017, TFE has supported warfighters with the mission to defeat the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria across the Combined Joint Operations Area (CJOA). TFE is a key resource in ensuring mission success by planning, designing, facilitating, and expediting the delivery of critical projects in this contingency environment. The task force grew from a

small advance team to the premier engineering and construction asset in theater with personnel located across multiple bases in Iraq and Kuwait. “We provide vital master planning, environmental, engineering, construction, and project integration support,” said Todd Watts, deputy for Programs and Project Management. “But we are also coaches, mentors, and advisers to the CJTF staff who are in roles that they may not be used to. TFE’s role in theater is truly unique for a deployed USACE organization,” Watts said. 129

TRANSATL ANTIC DIVISION BASE CAMP MASTER PLANNING Base Camp Master Planning (BCMP) serves as the foundation for management of theater-wide installation requirements. BCMPs incorporate higher-level guidance to achieve the commander’s vision by identifying adaptable plans and courses of action to account for future operational requirements. These plans are living documents that prioritize and guide land use and infrastructure development. A BCMP is the blueprint for base upgrades, footprint reductions, and closures as well as changes to a base camp’s purpose. TFE engages with stakeholders throughout the CJOA to develop, enhance, and maintain BCMPs. Planning teams – comprised of master planners and geospatial analysts – travel throughout Iraq conducting stakeholder interviews, facilitating planning charrettes, and gathering data to understand land use and planning problems, constraints, and opportunities. This information is used to develop plans to address issues and enhance mission execution. “A BCMP is the primary unifying document that brings together all players with a stake in the base camp, from headquarters to the field. Our team facilitates the process and develops a path for implementing the vision of the base,” said Jennifer Switzer, BCMP program manager.



The TFE Environmental Program provides technical support, advice, and guidance to Base Operating Support-Integrators (BOSI; those who coordinate the use of mission support resources for a wide range of functions) and CJTF Engineers at bases across Iraq to meet the applicable environmental requirements as outlined in U.S. Central Command’s (USCENTCOM) Contingency Environmental Standards regulation. TFE deploys environmental advisers to strategic locations throughout the CJOA. The environmental team conducts assessments and prepares environmental condition reports; these reports provide visibility and address existing and emergent environmental issues. Then TFE Environmental creates, updates, and assists units and contractors in implementing management plans for hazardous materials, hazardous waste, wastewater, and solid waste, as well as creates or updates Spill Prevention and Response Plans. “Our environmental program ensures the BOS-Is are provided with the best technical guidance to implement USCENTCOM’s environmental regulation,” said J.P. Beaudouin, Environmental program manager. “The regulation reflects USCENTCOM’s commitment to environmental stewardship and has a positive impact on the health, safety, and morale of troops, base personnel, and the host nation.”


Percy Williams, chief of Construction, mentors an Army engineer noncommissioned officer in understanding the designer’s intent during the construction phase of a project. Task Force Essayons is a key resource for providing engineering and construction services to the U.S. and coalition forces of Combined Joint Task Force-Operation Inherent Resolve.


TFE’s Engineering and Construction Division consists of a design cell at Camp Taji, Iraq, and construction support teams at multiple locations throughout the CJOA. “Experienced team members drawn from diverse disciplines work together to provide engineering and construction solutions for the warfighter’s toughest challenges,” said Bart Rylander, chief, Engineering and Construction Division.



Task Force Essayons (TFE) master planners lead a base camp master planning charrette at Erbil air base, Iraq. TFE works with stakeholders to develop plans that address issues and enhance mission execution.


TFE Engineering Branch includes professional engineers, architects, construction managers, cost estimators, and personnel with deep technical expertise in civil, electrical, mechanical, and structural engineering disciplines. They provide design-build and design-bidbuild capabilities for troop labor and contract construction projects that vary in size and complexity throughout the CJOA. TFE has completed more than 70 designs for projects valued at more than $50 million and prepared cost estimates for more than 150 projects. TFE has also completed technical peer reviews for dozens of designs prepared by other design agents, including the Forward Engineer Support Team-Advance and Engineer Facilities Detachment. “We have a team of highly qualified professionals focused on delivering quality engineering products and services,” said Daniel Rocha, chief, Engineering Branch. The Construction Branch provides project engineering, construction quality assurance, and contracting officer representative expertise for more than 50 projects throughout the theater. The dynamic nature of providing construction-related services in a contingent environment allows construction control representatives to bring the full breadth of their construction experience to bear. “Our goal is to build quality and safe projects that exceed customer expectations,” said Percy Williams, chief, Construction.

Given TFE’s unique role in theater, TFE is positioned to provide project integration services to aid BOS-I staff with the multitude of requirements during all phases of their projects from inception through design, construction, project closeout, and hand over. Project integrators are located throughout the CJOA and support more than 130 active projects in various phases of planning, design, acquisition, and construction. Project integrators enable and expedite project delivery by facilitating communication and collaborating with all stakeholders, including customers and base camp planning, technical design, contracting, and construction qualityassurance teams. “Project Integrators add value by incorporating key elements of the USACE Project Delivery Business Process and coordinating the phased delivery of project requirements across functional boundaries and throughout the project life cycle,” said Matthew Burkett, chief, Project Integration Team. TFE’s ability to support U.S. and coalition forces rests in the service ethic of its team members. “Our team of experienced professional civilians and Soldiers live the Army values on a daily basis,” said Sgt. Maj. Peter Leadley, TFE senior enlisted adviser. “They take their missions seriously to help ensure that the service members in the fight against ISIS have the facilities required to accomplish their mission.” n 131



USACE deployee Kay King, standing fourth from left, deployed to Task Force Essayons in Iraq. Like most deployees, she encourages others to deploy because of unparalleled opportunities for professional and personal experiences. King works in the USACE Contingency Deployment Center.



ith a district in Afghanistan as well as projects in Iraq and other contingency locations around the Middle East, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) is fortunate enough to have a robust cadre of civilian volunteers eager to answer their nation’s call. When they do, they look to the Transatlantic Division Middle East District’s USACE Contingency Deployment Center (UCDC), USACE’s conduit for


support to the warfighter, to ensure a smooth deployment from start to finish. The UCDC was designed to alleviate the hiring burden from downrange as well as expedite the administrative actions that go along with processing someone for deployment. The UCDC’s contingency hiring model has been determined to be the enterprise model for contingency hiring and can be used to staff any contingency worldwide,


saving time and money. It adds an expertise not found anywhere else in USACE. “We recruit, hire, and execute all personnel actions for anyone deploying to the Transatlantic Division’s area of responsibility,” said Kirsten Smyth, UCDC acting chief. The UCDC is divided into three sections: the Deployment Coordination Administrators Cell (DCAC), which works to recruit civilians globally from within USACE; the USACE Contingency Recruitment Cell, which ensures commanders in the field have the right personnel to meet mission requirements; and the Administrative Personnel Processing Office (APPO), responsible for ensuring those who deploy meet all requirements and are administratively taken care of from start to finish. The DCAC holds roadshows monthly at different districts and answers innumerable questions and requests for information for people and their commands on Overseas Contingency Operations deployments. The UCRC has four subject-matter experts to ensure they are able to get the right people into the right positions. “Between the four of us, there’s a wealth of project management and engineering knowledge to ensure we’re getting the best people in place to support mission requirements. Most of our hires come from

within USACE, but we also have the ability to hire from any federal agency as well as use certain types of direct hires,” Smyth said. Once the UCRC has screened applicants, helped management select the right person for the job, and processed all of the hiring actions, the APPO takes over to ensure they can get that person in place as quickly as possible. “There are multiple things we’ve got to do to get someone ready for a deployment,” said Keith Frye, APPO chief. “There are medical clearances, pre-deployment training at Fort Bliss, [Texas], making sure people have any equipment they need, and sorting out their passports and visas or country clearances. These are people who have stepped up to serve their country, so we want to make sure the administrative process doesn’t create any unnecessary burdens.” According to Smyth, the UCDC successfully deploys more than 200 people a year and executes more than 1,000 personnel actions relating to deployments, including extensions, promotions, and curtailments. For more information about current USACE deployment opportunities, visit the Transatlantic Division’s deployment page; a résumé is required, which can be emailed to OCODeployment@ usace.army.mil. n



he last 12 months have been exciting and productive for the Mosul Dam Task Force (MDTF). Located 20 miles northwest of the city of Mosul, MDTF provides the government of Iraq with engineering and technical expertise for its contract with TREVI S.p.A. to repair and stabilize Mosul Dam. MDTF was established in October 2016 as a result of an agreement between the government of Iraq and the United States. The project is truly an international effort as task force members work in daily close coordination with the Iraqi Ministry of Water Resources, the Italian army, TREVI group (of Italy), the Iraqi CounterTerrorism Services, and U.S. government agencies. MDTF is a combination of active-duty Soldiers, Reserve, National Guard, Department of the Army civilians, AECOM employees, and Iraqi contractors. Our diversity and one-of-a-kind mission make this Task Force unique to

USACE and to the Army. Winners of the 2017 USACE Project Delivery Team of the Year Award for Excellence, the Mosul Dam Task Force is best “dam task force” in the Army! Mosul Dam was built on a foundation that is highly susceptible to dissolution and is widely acknowledged as “the world’s most dangerous dam” because without effective, continuous foundation grouting, there is an extremely high risk of failure. The USACE Risk Assessment found that up to 1.5 million citizens would be directly impacted by a failure of the dam. An uncontrolled release of the reservoir down the Tigris River Valley could lead to catastrophic loss of life and severe economic impacts all the way to Baghdad. In the context of the USACE portfolio, it is a DSAC I (Dam Safety Action Classification) with the highest-risk rating by a wide margin. In 2016, this compelling situation forged the international commitment 133



required to undertake such a large and complex project at the height of the ongoing war against ISIS (or Daesch) across Iraq. In March 2016, the government of Iraq awarded a contract to TREVI to conduct the work needed to stabilize the dam. In May 2016, the U.S. State Department and the government of Iraq agreed that USACE would serve as the engineer for the TREVI contract. By September 2016, the Mosul Dam Task Force had deployed to Iraq and immediately began developing solutions to stabilize the foundation and restore the dam to full operation. The mission was to execute an emergency grouting program to mitigate the risk of dam failure while building the capability of the Iraqi Ministry of Water Resources (MoWR) personnel to manage the dam safety program using new equipment and stateof-the-practice technology. The scope of work included a 3.4-kilometer (km)-long, double-row grout curtain; rehabilitation of a large twin tunnel water regulating outlet system; total replacement of the 2.2 km grouting gallery’s infrastructure; expansion of the dam’s instrumentation system; refurbishment of five gantry cranes; analysis, design, and implementation of plunge pool stabilization measures; and a comprehensive training program for 75 MoWR personnel. Since September 2016, the replacement of water, electrical, lighting, and grout distribution systems throughout the 2.2 km gallery has 134

The governments of Iraq, Italy, and the United States have combined their efforts to stabilize Mosul Dam, the largest earthen dam in Iraq and the fourth largest in the Middle East. The dam provides water supply, irrigation, flood control, and hydropower for the people of Iraq along the Tigris River Valley.

been completed. This major undertaking – completed while simultaneously using the utilities to execute drilling and grouting work – included replacement of more than 200 km of electrical wiring, 28 km of water pipes, 16 km of fiber optic cables, and similar quantities of materials removed from inside a 2-meter-wide gallery with limited access at the two ends. In addition, the design and installation of an Automated Data Acquisition System that permits remote 24/7 instrumentation monitoring was completed with more than 800 devices installed on site to monitor water elevations, ground water pressures, water quality and flow rates, and surface displacement. Through the combined efforts of MDTF, TREVI, and the Iraqi MoWR, we improved effectiveness and exceeded the scope of ministry training by 33 percent. In 2017, 106 MoWR personnel



from 11 career fields were trained in theory, technology, and practical methods of foundation drilling and grouting. MDTF furthermore completed the first row of the 3.4-km-long, doublerow grout curtain exceeding the baseline target by more than 20 percent, completing 1,747 grout holes. Completion of the first row makes the Mosul Dam project the largest grouting operation in the world, with 237,000 linear meters of drilling and 30,000 cubic meters of grout injected into the foundation voids. To put it in perspective, in one year, the team injected the Washington Monument’s worth of grout into the foundation and drilled the distance from Philadelphia to Washington D.C. The completed Year 1 work has contributed greatly to reducing the risk of dam failure. The success of the Mosul Dam project through Year 1 can be contributed directly to the team. With three governments, three armies, and a private contractor, the Mosul Dam project has a population of more than 2,000 people from 16 countries. MDTF is staffed with 20 USACE civilians, 10 military members, and 45 civilian contractors (including nine Iraqi engineers), with each person bringing a dynamic mix of talent and experience with them that has proven instrumental to project success. The military staff is composed of officers and noncommissioned officers from three military occupational specialties and is a combination of five active-duty, three Army Reserve, and two National Guard Soldiers. As of late July, a total of 28 military, 56 USACE civilians, and 52 civilian contractors from 24 USACE districts and divisions, and 20 AECOM offices have served forward on MDTF. Including the reachback contributions, 350 USACE civilians from 34

Representatives of each partner on the Mosul Dam stabilization project hold a core sample representing the mutual goal of stabilization during a change-of-command ceremony in June for the Mosul Dam Task Force. Attending the ceremony were Iraqi military and civilian leaders, TREVI officials, and TAD leaders; command passed from Col. Michael Farrell (second from left) to Col. Philip Secrist III (second from right).

districts and centers have contributed to Mosul Dam. From technical design and submittal review to instrumentation monitoring, water management forecasts, and analysis of grouting results, the type of support provided is as extensive as it is critical. With the success of Year 1, the government of Iraq signed a Year 2 contract extension to enable USACE and TREVI to complete the project and ensure that MoWR has the capacity and capability to continue the drilling and grouting operations needed to stabilize the foundation of the Mosul Dam. The scope for Year 2 work includes the completion of the second-row grout curtain, drilling and grouting in and around the bottom outlet tunnels and hydropower intake tunnels, rehabilitation of the bottom outlets, and final instrumentation installation. In addition to the work to further stabilize and improve the functionality of the dam, 250 MoWR operational personnel will integrate with TREVI and 15 MoWR engineers and technicians will integrate with USACE to develop the dam safety skills required to properly assess the dam and implement solutions to best stabilize its constantly dissolving gypsum foundation. n 135




he Afghanistan conflict is America’s longest war, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) has been there since 2002 supporting military contingency operations and U.S. government initiatives. Through various policy shifts in Afghanistan since then, USACE has remained a consistent and reliable provider of engineering and construction services to U.S. and coalition partners. Today, the Afghanistan District supports Operation Resolute Support, the NATO-led, non-combat mission to train, advise, and assist the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF). The district also supports other U.S. partners in Afghanistan. “Our efforts to provide quality facilities are evident in the number of projects completed and turned over to help establish security and provide infrastructure,” said Col. Jason Kelly, Afghanistan District commander. “As the U.S. mission has evolved, USACE now has additional projects that may carry into the next four years.” The Afghanistan District operates similarly to other USACE districts in terms of following USACE policies and procedures, but it does so in a contingency environment and with a revolving workforce of military and civilian members. Their work is supplemented by Afghan citizens under the Local National Quality Assurance program, where these citizens assist in construction oversight. The participation of Afghan citizens falls under the Afghan First Program, a NATO program designed to contribute directly to the longterm stability, security, and economic development of Afghanistan. The program also promotes the use of Afghan firms – all with a goal of building the capacity of Afghan workers and companies. The district’s mission is a country-wide, three-pronged effort with U.S. Forces-Afghanistan (USFOR-A), Combined Security Transition Command-Afghanistan (CSTC-A), and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), with concentration on power generation, distribution, and transmission and ANDSF construction programs. In addition, an operations and maintenance program instills the skills necessary for the Afghans to operate and maintain the newly constructed facilities. Afghanistan District works in partnership with USFOR-A and CSTC-A to carry out these programs. The district also partners with the Defense Department and State Department to complete waterand power-infrastructure projects. In 2017, the Afghanistan District was focused on reducing its footprint and aligning itself with the projected workload for a reduced U.S. mission in theater. However, that changed with the Resolute




he contingency environment significantly adds to the challenges of providing engineering solutions to complex problems. Dissimilar to stateside operating conditions, projects in the Afghanistan District add the overarching factor of directly enhancing some form of operational military action against myriad enemy forces; our projects directly enable the fight against the enemy. When accounting for this variable in project delivery best practices, it puts a measurable and tangible effect on schedule slips. A large percentage of our projects support increasing the operational capacity of the Afghan National Army, special forces, and air force. If a project is late, the unit will experience proportionate effects to their military operations. The contingency environment adds additional challenges as it demands teamwork from the triumvirate consisting of the United States, NATO, and the government of Afghanistan in the planning approach providing quality facilities for this surge in the Afghan National Defense Security Forces (ANDSF). One such project that showcases both international teamwork and enabling the ANDSF to bring stability to the region is the Mazar-e-Sharif Aviation Expansion project. This project is a critical artery in the initiative to double the size of the Afghan air force. As a NATO-funded effort, Germany has covered the majority of the costs and has a leading role in shaping the outcome of the project. The project consists of increasing the operational capacity of the Aviation Operations Detachment Balkh from a detachment (100-200 personnel) to a wing-sized element (700-1,000 personnel). This will be achieved through the building of a newly refurbished airfield and maintenance hangars, as well as the logistics and billeting that will support the steady influx in personnel. During a meeting, Col. Jason Kelly and the Train, Advise, Assist Command-North then-commanding general, Brig. Gen. WolfJürgen Stahl, discussed this project, acknowledging that it will have immense political and operational ramifications for the entire northern region of Afghanistan.



Support commander’s plan for a conditions-based strategy, which included an uplift of forces and an aggressive train, advise, and assist mission in conjunction with significant increases in the size and scope of the ANDSF platforms. The district’s projected workload over the next four years tripled. New and expanded programs include projects for Afghan air force modernization, Afghan special forces, and the Women’s Participation Program, while the district remains committed to completing projects identified under the Northern Electrical Power System and the Southern Electrical Power System. “In addition, USAID and the district established an unprecedented partnership to finish out the U.S. contribution to the national power grid, taking on the more than $300 million power transmission project country-wide. When complete, this project will establish power throughout the country, connecting Afghanistan civilians and military to stable reliable power,” Kelly said. Over the course of 2017-2018, the district applied the concept of the “speed of relevance at the speed of war,” taking deliberate steps to ensure it was engaged early in the operational planning cycle, connected to its partners, and offering engineering solutions in a dynamic and volatile environment. The district placed people at critical locations where it could best support its partners’ key priorities, increased district access to USACE, and reduced the lines of

Parts and supplies are delivered to Kajaki Dam via helicopter in Helmand province. The renovation project will restore irrigation capacity to the Helmand River.

communication needed in a theater constrained to air movements over geographically dispersed locations. The Afghanistan District’s ability to reach back to USACE enterprise brings the might of the USACE Enterprise. From design expertise on the Women’s Participation Program training facilities to technical specialties for closed-circuit television in support of NATO’s effort to secure Kabul in the month’s preceding the parliamentary elections, the district leveraged expertise from 32 stateside districts. Thousands of Americans, Afghans, and people from all over the world have and are working on USACE projects throughout Afghanistan. “USACE members continue to volunteer because of the sense of purpose they get by being a part of something bigger than themselves,” said Lt. Col Rachel Honderd, deputy commander, Afghanistan District. “We will continue to need people interested in serving in Afghanistan well into the future and encourage their participation in this vital national defense mission.” n 1 37




wight Eisenhower once said, “In preparing for battle, I have found that plans are useless, but planning is indispensable.” While this quote could apply to virtually any long-term planning effort, engineers from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Middle East District (MED) and planners from USACE’s Regional Planning and Environmental Center (RPEC) have begun applying it in base camp master planning in the U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) area of responsibility (AOR). Base camp master planners, much like city master planners, look at the long-term layout, construction, and development plans for a military base to ensure the development is thought out, properly funded, and meshes with current infrastructure such as utilities and streets. While the process is not new, it has rarely been applied to contingency operations. “Over the years, USACE has built up quite a lot of expertise in this type of planning,” said Joey Ball, a camp master planner with the RPEC in the Fort Worth District. “However, over the past few years, it became apparent that one area where there was a lack of focus on long-term planning was contingencies.” With extensive experience in the CENTCOM AOR, MED has long had experience in contingency operations but not specifically master planning expertise; therefore, MED reached an agreement with the Fort Worth District for master planning support focused on USCENTCOM. Chief Warrant Officer 3 Michael Brotherton, a master planner with U.S. Army Central (ARCENT) engineers (the Army component of CENTCOM), echoed Ball’s sentiments, saying that a longer-term focus is critical to being able to meet the warfighter’s long-term needs in an environment that often promotes a short-term mindset.


“Up to this point, what we would see is that forces would rotate to a particular contingency base for nine months to a year and would plan for needs that would arise while they were there. New structures would be built without tearing down outdated ones, and locations were chosen because there was space open rather than forethought on what might be needed later. It’s not always easy to keep long-term planning in mind when you’re trying to meet temporary needs, but keep in mind that some of our ‘temporary’ bases have been in place for years,” said Brotherton. Through their partnership, MED, RPEC, and ARCENT were able to produce a five-year roadmap for the approximately 20 locations in the ARCENT AOR that will provide planning standards, a capital investment strategy, and roadmap to maintain a long-term vision even as forces move in and out of theater. Additionally, a plan has been finalized to stand up a contingency base camp planning cell within MED. “Over time, it became clear we needed a more deliberate in-house contingency-base planning capability so we don’t have to rely on others as much for support,” said Alan Zytowski, MED’s acting chief of engineering. “This doesn’t mean we won’t continue to utilize Fort Worth District’s capabilities; they’ve really got some valuable expertise. It will, however, give us a greater ability to support the warfighter and possibly assist our Foreign Military Sales customers in their long-term planning efforts.” Oftentimes, the rotational forces will only see a few construction milestones occur during their rotations. This group’s efforts will ensure those milestones are only a small part of a larger effort rather than the whole picture. n



A 3-D model of a base camp laydown produced by the Center of Standardization for Nonpermanent Facilities in Winchester, Virginia. The center provides compliance reviews and has off-the-shelf camp layouts and facility designs and 3-D modeling capability that can be used in contingency base camp planning.





ngineer Research and Development Center (ERDC) Headquarters is located in Vicksburg, Mississippi, along with four of its seven laboratories: the Coastal and Hydraulics, Geotechnical and Structures, Environmental, and Information Technology. Other laboratories include the Construction Engineering Research Laboratory in Champaign, Illinois; Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory in Hanover, New Hampshire; and the Geospatial Research Laboratory in Alexandria, Virginia. These laboratories provide a wide range of research expertise that can collectively address diverse and complex challenges. ERDC’s vision is to be a world-class research and development organization that discovers, develops, and delivers new ways to make the world safer and better every day. The power of ERDC comes from its people, its portfolio, its premier research facilities, its products, and promoting understanding. ERDC’s research and development focuses on five primary research areas: • Engineered resilient systems – virtual prototyping environment; computational proving ground; and tradespace analytics


• Environmental quality and installations – contingency basing; environmental lifecycle; training lands; and sustainable infrastructure • Geospatial research and engineering – geospatially enabled computing environments; geospatial intelligence; human geography • Military engineering – force protection; force projection; and maneuver support • Civil works – inland and coastal navigation hydropower; flood risk management and coastal systems; water supply and emergency management; environmental restoration, regulation, and stewardship; water resources infrastructure; and system-wide water resources. n

U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center 3909 Halls Ferry Rd. Vicksburg, MS 39180-6199 (601) 636-3111 ERDCinfo@usace.army.mil



n Fox, Alaska, lies hidden a unique scientific treasure, the Permafrost Tunnel Research Facility – a portal back in time to the ice age. Inside the tunnel, the walls are composed of frozen silt, gravel, vegetation, and the bones of ice age bison and mammoths. The tunnel, excavated into the hillside in the early 1960s, was first used by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) to learn about excavating permafrost for underground military operations. Later in the 1960s, the Bureau of Mines used the tunnel to test permafrost mining techniques. Situated in Interior Alaska, approximately 10 miles north of Fairbanks, the tunnel, since 1963, has been maintained and operated by the U.S. Army Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (CRREL) and provides engineers, scientists, and students with a unique source of data in a natural laboratory. The tunnel is refrigerated year-round, preserving the site for long-term sampling and in situ research. Referred to as the “Old Tunnel,” the initial construction began in 1963 and continued until approximately 1968, with two excavations. The first was a horizontal passage, or adit, with a total length of 360 feet and 40 feet below the ground surface. The second was a 150-foot-long winze with a decline of 14 percent to the gold bearing gravel and bedrock at 55 feet below the ground surface. The facility has undergone renewed expansion, also known as the “New Tunnel.” Phase I occurred in 2011, creating a new portal and entrance and 100 feet of horizontal passage, while Phase II occurred in 2014 and provided another 100 feet of horizontal passage. The latest phase was successfully concluded on March 9, after six weeks of digging. The project began with ambient temperatures in the minus 20s and minus 30s, which are ideal to counter heat generating excavating equipment. Unfortunately, the outdoor temperatures warmed in the next weeks, requiring minimizing the time while excavating to ensure excessive thawing of permafrost features did not occur.

“Despite the warming temperatures we managed to excavate a total of 176 feet, connecting the newer south tunnel with the older north tunnel,” said Kevin Bjella, a research engineer with CRREL’s Alaska Research Office in Fairbanks. “This phase of excavation connected the mid-points of the ‘old’ and ‘new’ tunnels with more unique ice features being exposed and documented along the way with detailed high-resolution photo mosaics.” The expansion was hailed a great success, and the team looks forward to conducting the final phases pending future funding availability. The final phases will connect the back of the old and new tunnels, requiring extending another 200 feet of new excavation. This latest effort will provide ground truth for developing standoff ground ice-detection methods; thereby, allowing higher resolution on the frequency and extent of massive ground ice in order to better understand permafrost terrains for engineering, military planning, and science. Additionally, the expanded facility will provide better quantization of paleoenvironmental parameters, such as sequestered carbon and paleo biological remnants and the study of climates of the past. The tunnel facility has renewed direct military application as a site for subterranean training. “CRREL’s Permafrost Tunnel now provides the Department of Defense with mission support in addition to its role as a 3-D test bed for research and education,” said Gary Larsen, the operations manager for CRREL’s Alaskan Research Office in Fairbanks. “Following successful tours of the tunnel,” Larsen said, “the U.S. Army Maneuver Center of Excellence, and Asymmetric Warfare Group developed a plan to use the tunnel as their site for conducting subterranean operations training exercises in June. Additionally, the U.S. Army Alaska will use the tunnel for subterranean operations training five to six times per year, as well. In both situations, the Army seeks to use the tunnel to provide Soldiers a great opportunity to understand that subterranean facilities are common, even in Alaska, and present unique operational challenges.” n



Igor Linkov, a research physical scientist at the U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center (ERDC), examined new facets of information system security and resilience at the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) workshop, Security and Resilience of Information Systems Affected by Hybrid Threats, which he co-hosted Aug. 26-28. A group of approximately 50 scientists from NATO and partner countries gathered in the city of Pärnu, Estonia, to answer questions about system resilience and misinformation.

Linkov said the overarching goal of the workshop was to provide military commanders, government officials, and industry leaders with a better understanding of the science, engineering, and value of resilience-based solutions for information systems. “Participants examined both physical and societal resilience associated with information and misinformation in the context of civilian-military operations,” he said. “Civilian and military leaders benefited from recommendations for both securing information and building resilience in how it is used.” 141

“Workshop participants were organized into three working groups: cyberinfrastructure, information content, and social fabric. The cyberinfrastructure group addressed traditional cybersecurity, or how to develop good networks; the information content group focused upon emerging threats known as ‛fake news,’ or the information itself, and what happens if misinformation gets propagated throughout a system; and the social fabric group considered a newer topic – when you have good networks and good information, you have to look into the societal fabric to ensure the information is presented the right way to people,” Linkov said. “This last topic is bringing a social science dimension to the field to understand how to communicate with people, how to craft a message, what drives people; this is a novel topic in the field. We will first develop this as a scientific concept and then work with practitioners to deliver messages in innovative ways,” Linkov continued. Then the topics were examined through the lens of risk and resilience. “The issue of cybersecurity, for example, traditionally deals with network hardware, software, and sustaining the functions of the system,” he said. “Resilience focuses on recovery and adaptation in interconnected systems. How quickly the system recovers if it is impaired – because the assumption is that all systems will be disrupted at some point – that’s resilience, versus risk and security.” Linkov and his ERDC team have contributed new approaches for quantifying risk and resilience to the field of disaster risk management. His methods are based on Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis and utilize simplified analytical tools for risk and resilience-based decision-making, integrating data, and judgment to match available solutions to mission needs.

“This workshop focused on the development of protection and recovery strategies for systems impacted by hybrid threats, and the benefits of those strategies under different disruption scenarios,” Linkov said. “Methods and tools were discussed for prioritizing different information resilience strategies, organizing model predictions and expert judgment, reconciling conflicting information, and supporting strong decision-making. “Hybrid threats, which are varying and dynamic combinations of conventional, terrorist, criminal, and other capabilities, affect both civilian and military operations,” he said. Hybrid threats are present in all human activity, from physical to cognitive; however, the information domain is the most vulnerable and least studied. “With the increased utilization of advanced technologies, threats in the information domain are growing at an unprecedented rate. You’ve probably heard of the concept of the ‘internet of things,’ how through the internet, every device with an ‘on and off’ switch is now connected, and then people, of course, are also connected to these devices and to each other – this new interconnectedness also creates new vulnerabilities.” Linkov said that a NATO advanced-research workshop is the perfect forum for USACE to open new lines of thought on information system security. “NATO as an organization has traditionally sponsored science programs, in which scientists from NATO countries and partner countries examine issues of common interest,” Linkov concluded. “We collaborate so that everyone has the same level of understanding when the issues need to be addressed; we also want partner countries to be on the same page as us, and, of course, we want to learn from our partner countries.” n



s the age of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineer’s (USACE) civil works infrastructure surpasses the originally designed service life, deterioration of construction materials becomes a prevalent problem for many districts. Decadesold steel and concrete structures more frequently corrode, crumble, and crack requiring increased maintenance and repair to meet acceptable performance standards. The U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center (ERDC) in Vicksburg, Mississippi, has recognized the need for materials that would meet the structural, serviceability, and durability requirements necessary to extend the service life of the existing infrastructure. Robert Moser, Ph.D., senior research civil engineer for the Geotechnical and Structures Laboratory at ERDC, has been working on research with novel materials to greatly improve the performance of civil works infrastructure, reducing repair costs and imparts new capabilities, such as self-sensing for integral structural health monitoring.


“We recognized that there was a need for addressing the issues of aging infrastructure both within the Corps and across the nation,” said Moser. “These aging infrastructure challenges made us look at understanding the current state, predicting the future state, and using that information to make decisions in a limited funding environment.” There are many deterioration mechanisms that the team looked at to determine the best approach for the aging infrastructure issues. Some of these were caused by expansion, cracking, and strength loss. Others had to do with freeze and thaw distress in concrete structures that were built prior to the 1950s. There were also issues with chloride-induced corrosion and fatigue. “The team took the approach of forensic investigation to understand and determine the cause of the problem prior to developing repair and rehab strategies,” said Moser. With this information, ERDC scientists are able to use the predictive service-life modeling to predict future deterioration and repair needs. The development of novel materials to address the identified issues has been very successful at key USACE projects.


One of these projects is the Newt Graham Lock and Dam in the Tulsa District. ERDC demonstrated two materials in civil works developed for military engineering. A fiber-reinforced rapid-repair grout that was developed for airfield damage repair and a fiber-reinforced ultra-high performance concrete developed for blast and impact resistance. The materials were used for armoring system repairs so the district did not have to shut down the river traffic. “With these rapid repair techniques, the repairs gain strength in minutes rather than days and maintain higher strength than conventional materials,” said Mosher. Another use of the novel materials has been to retrofit bridge structures. This rapid upgrade of structures can be performed

in less than a week versus the typical months needed to do conventional repairs. Many of the novel materials were originally developed for military engineering applications but are now being transitioned to maintain and repair civil works infrastructure. The Geotechnical and Structures Laboratory’s studies optimize material properties and investigate the feasibility for repair and retrofit. Collaborations with USACE districts are leveraged to investigate novel materials for various future applications. “ERDC has been doing research in this area for quite some time, from the historical Repair, Evaluation, Maintenance and Rehabilitation Program to military efforts to current civil works R&D programs,” said Moser. n

The Automated Construction of Expeditionary Structures (ACES) printer technology demonstration produced these structurally enhanced exterior walls for a 512-square-foot building over the course of 48 hours. Through the continuous print cycle, the operational personnel manning requirements and mechanical limits of the ACES printer were defined over a 24-hour work cycle. By 3-D printing a geometry not practical with conventional concrete forms, the walls are two-and-a-half times stronger than conventional reinforced concrete walls when subjected to a perpendicular external force.




he U.S. Army Engineering and Support Center – Huntsville Center – is unlike other U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) organizations. The center is not defined by geographic boundaries; its missions provide specialized technical expertise, global engineering solutions, and cutting-edge innovations through centrally managed programs in support of national interests. Huntsville Center’s more than 1,000 employees manage nearly 3,000 ongoing projects at any given time. These projects fall into one of five portfolios: Medical, Facilities and Base Operations, Energy, Operational Technology, and Environmental. The portfolios comprise more than 40 different program areas, as well as seven mandatory and six technical centers of expertise, and 17 centers of standardization. Projects are generally broad in scope, require specialized technical expertise, centralized management or are functions not normally accomplished by a headquarters, USACE organizational element. “HNC is a unique organization; not like other divisions,” said Albert “Chip” Marin, Huntsville Center’s programs director. “We do specialty programs that are predominantly O&M [operation and maintenance] funded – Sustainment, Restoration, and Modernization [SRM]. Last year, we obligated nearly $2.5 billion in O&M money.” For information on the full scope of programs, visit www.hnc.usace.army.mil.

MEDICAL PORTFOLIO The Huntsville Center’s Medical Portfolio includes the USACE Medical Facilities Mandatory Center of Expertise and Standardization (MX) and a Medical Division. The MX partners on a global basis with the USACE project delivery teams, regional business centers/divisions, stakeholders, and geographical districts to provide design acquisition strategy, design development, and technical oversight during design and construction for all medical projects. The MX is centrally funded 144

during the design phase of any medical project, and its use is mandatory for all Department of Defense (DOD) medical facilities. The MX also is available on a reimbursable basis to provide support for others. The Center’s Medical Division offers programs that support new and renovated military health care and research laboratory facility construction projects worldwide by offering a simplified process to respond to the growing O&M needs of DOD medical facilities, as well as other medical facility project support services; medical repair and renewal for designs, repairs, replacement, renovation, sustainment, restoration, or modernization of medical facilities; and medical outfitting and transition (MO&T), providing medical support services and initial and sustainment outfitting and transition. The MO&T program also provides for the procurement and installation of medical equipment, furniture, and artwork.

FACILITIES AND BASE OPERATIONS PORTFOLIO The Facilities and Base Operations Portfolio includes programs that help installations meet needs in facilities reduction; facilities repair and renewal; access control points; barracks and administration furniture; routine installation base operations support; maintenance, inspections, repairs, and emergency response actions for the Defense Logistics Agency petroleum facilities on military installations worldwide; and, through the Range and Training Land Programs Center of Expertise (CX), reviews designs, conducts construction inspections, and ensures Army standards are met. The CX provides planning, MILCON programming and development of standard designs for Army automated ranges, and DD 1391 preparation and validation. After nearly a year of research and hundreds of man hours spent collaborating with General Services Administration (GSA) officials, Huntsville Center’s Fuels Program is the center’s first program to use GSA schedule maintenance contracts.


Workers perform maintenance on a fuel system at Naval Station Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. The U.S. Army Engineering and Support Center, Huntsville’s, Fuels Program will be the center’s first program to use General Services Administration Schedule recurring maintenance and minor repair service contracts for more than 400 Army, Navy, and Air Force fuel facilities’ sites around the world.

Dennis Bacon, Fuels Program branch chief, said adopting GSA’s Multiple Award Schedule as the base-acquisition solution from which to order maintenance and services allows the Fuels Program to focus on decreasing the contractual administrative burden while freeing resources and to fully apply industry-specific knowledge and expertise. “The magnitude of the geographic boundaries makes acquisition of such services a challenge at the installation level and demands a more highly coordinated and managed approach,” Bacon said. “The Multiple Award Schedule provides us with a streamlined procurement device to acquire all of the services necessary to maintain and manage fuel facilities, and shifting resources improves other areas of importance to the customer, such as performance management, quality assurance, continuous improvement, and mission support,” he said.

ENERGY PORTFOLIO Huntsville Center’s Energy Portfolio includes everything from initial surveys that identify energy conservation measures (ECMs) to installing identified ECMs using third-party financing. Using Energy Savings Performance Contracting (ESPC), the contractor provides capital and expertise to make infrastructure energy improvements to significantly

reduce energy utilization and cost. The Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) Program supports Office of Energy Initiatives (OEI) tools to execute third-party financing investment in renewable energy-source power generation. Utility Energy Services Contracting (UESC) is similar to ESPC, but works with the utility provider rather than the energy services company. In May, a Huntsville Center Energy Savings Performance Contracting $23.8 million task order award at Fort Huachuca, Arizona, is on track to provide series of multimillion-dollar energy-savings upgrades to existing infrastructure there – all without the burden of upfront capital costs. The task order and associated capital investment will not only help modernize and replace aging infrastructure, but they are projected to reduce energy costs for the Fort Huachuca garrison by 23 percent. “ESPC task orders are distinct in that they leverage third-party financing to fund energy-conservation measures. Because Army installations typically do not have funds budgeted for improvements on existing infrastructure, third-party financing is often the best fit – and Fort Huachuca was no exception,” said Jason Bray, ESPC program manager with Huntsville Center’s Energy Division. 145


OPERATIONAL TECHNOLOGY PORTFOLIO Operational Technology programs manage interconnecting and automated building control systems, such as electronic security, utility monitoring and control, cybersecurity, metering, and information technology. The Electronic Security Systems (ESS) CX reviews all design and test submittals for Army ESS. ESS also provides technical, engineering, acquisition, and fielding support to all federal agencies. Utility Monitoring and Control Systems (UMCS) CX reviews all design and procurement packages; provides technical assistance, criteria, guidance, and training; and executes projects for DOD and other federal agencies. Army Metering is installing 13,000 meters and a global meter-data management system to track, record, and report energy consumption. This is an Army centrally funded program. Information Technology Systems programs include ACE-IT, which delivers value through Information Technology acquisition and project management for the USACE IT network and all peripherals; High Performance Computing (HPC), which supports the DOD High Performance Computing Modernization Program through procurement of numerous HPC systems (supercomputers) with more than five PetaFLOPS of computing capability and more than 50 PetaBytes of mass storage archives; Communication Infrastructure and 146

Andrew Brand, second from left, project manager with Task Force POWER, Afghanistan, leads a pre-opening inspection of a new dining facility at Camp Oqab, Afghanistan, in September. Brand was deployed there on behalf of Ordnance and Explosives Design Center’s Global Operations Division.

Systems Support (CIS2), which delivers value through Operational Technology acquisition, project management, and financial management excellence; and Medical Communication Infrastructure and Systems Support (MCIS2), which supports the entire DOD medical community in the procurement of hardware, software, and technical services related to facility systems. The Industrial Control Systems (ICS) CyberSecurity Execution Program provides engineering design and execution of compliant solutions to reduce and/or eliminate ICS cybersecurity vulnerabilities. A large part of this program’s portfolio centers on achieving the authority to operate on DOD networks via the Risk Management Framework process. “Knowing the volume of projects that have cybersecurity requirements are vast, Huntsville Center sees that the opportunity to engage and franchise this technical capability to the geographical districts as a virtual technical resource at the site level is a must-have to

ensure successful execution,” said Daniel Shepard, the chief of Huntsville Center’s ICS Cybersecurity Technical Center of Expertise.

ENVIRONMENTAL PORTFOLIO The Environmental and Munitions Center of Expertise (EM CX) fosters trust, innovation, communications, quality, and knowledge throughout the environmental community of practice to realize a healthy, secure, safe, and sustainable environment for this and future generations. The EM CX provides quality assurance for all USACE environmental remediation work, expert technical assistance to USACE offices worldwide, and technical expertise to DOD and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency panels and advisory committees, as well as promotes technology transfer and lessons learned, develops guidance documents, and develops and instructs high-level training. This portfolio also includes the Military Munitions Design Center and Remedial Action Team that conducts ordnance investigations, remedial designs and clearances of Formerly Used Defense Sites, range-support actions and construction sites; the Chemical Warfare Design Center, providing support to Department of the Army, DOD, State Department, and the Defense Threat Reduction Agency worldwide, and investigates and remediates chemical munitions. The Facilities Explosives Safety program offers technical expertise to the U.S. Army and all of USACE in the design and construction phases of any facility that will house ammunitions and explosives. Other programs supporting environmental efforts include Huntsville Center’s Ballistic Missile Defense Systems (BMDS) Center of Expertise supporting the Missile Defense Agency (MDA) activities and global operations in Afghanistan to conduct landmine and range clearance, environmental footprint reduction, and Task Force POWER (Protect Our Warfighters and Electrical Resources). Global Operations Division has been managing the Task Force POWER mission since 2010, when U.S. troop numbers were at their highest at nearly 100,000. Since 2011, though, the number has dropped with the transfer of authority between NATO and Afghan forces. However, an order from the new administration in late 2017 to increase that number is now expanding the Task Force POWER mission there. “Now that we have more forces coming in, expansion is going on again and semi-permanent buildings are being put up again as well,” said Eduardo Granados, chief of Global Operations for the Ordnance and Explosives Design Center. “As U.S. forces and military engineers wire those for electricity, our teams are supporting them. Our teams go in to help make sure everything is wired correctly so that those buildings are safe and sound for the new troops coming in.” According to a Feb. 9 report from Global Operations, since May 2015, Task Force POWER, Afghanistan has mitigated 190,185 life, health, and safety hazards and non-code-compliant electrical deficiencies in 9,124 facilities in the country. In all its projects, Huntsville Center partners with USACE divisions and districts in the planning and on-site execution of projects. This coordination and definitization of roles and responsibilities between the Huntsville Center and the geographic district ensures that USACE is providing the best possible services to our customers and stakeholders. n

BY THE NUMBERS • Provides specialized technical expertise, global engineering solutions, and cutting-edge innovations through centrally managed programs in support of national interests. • Employs a certified, professional workforce of more than 1,000 employees with an expeditionary mindset capable of pioneering solutions to unique, complex, and high-risk missions in strengthened partnerships with the USACE enterprise, key Department of Defense stakeholders, and strategic allies. • Has programmatic and functional boundaries in lieu of geographical boundaries, executing programs and projects that • are national or broad in scope; • require integrated facilities or systems that cross geographical division boundaries; • require commonality, standardization, multiplesite adaption, or technology transfer; • require a centralized management structure for effective control of program development, coordination, and execution; and • require functions to be performed that are not normally accomplished by a headquarters USACE organizational element. • Annually obligates more than $2 billion through some 5,000 contract actions. • Manages nearly 3,000 ongoing projects at all times. • Supports five business portfolios: medical, facilities and base operations, energy, operational technology, and environmental. The portfolios comprise 42 different program areas, as well as six mandatory and six technical centers of expertise, and 17 centers of standardization.

The U.S. Army Engineering and Support Center P.O. Box 1600 Huntsville, AL 35807 (256) 895-1694 www.hnc.usace.army.mil www.facebook.com/HuntsvilleCenter #CEHNC go.usa.gov/Kj3w

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n response to the devastation to Puerto Rico due to landfall of hurricanes Irma (Category 4) and Maria (Category 5) in September 2017, the 249th Engineer Battalion (Prime Power) launched a record-setting response, including more than 2,200 assessments and placing more than 1,600 generators. These numbers are dwarfing the response in the response to Hurricane Katrina, which resulted in just over 300 generators being installed. Until 2017, Hurricane Katrina was the most-expensive hurricane to have made landfall in American history. The battalion’s response was an effort with many fronts: The traditional role of the 249th Engineer Battalion is as a primary agency the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) for providing Emergency Support Function #3 technical assistance, engineering, and construction management resources and support during response activities. In that regard, the 249th was responsible for thousands of load assessments, which emphasized and helped prioritize power needs by area. Soldiers worked with local government and FEMA personnel to provide precise information on power


Sgt. Dalton Rezac (right), B Company, 249th Engineer Battalion (Prime Power), talks with a member of the Puerto Rico Aqueducts and Sewers Authority at a power substation about power distribution to La Plata Lake Dam, Toa Alta, Puerto Rico, on Aug. 28, 2018. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers continues to work as part of a unified effort with its partners at federal, state, and local agencies to help the citizens of Puerto Rico recover.

requirements for critical facilities for the health and well-being of local citizens. Such facilities include wastewater lift stations, hospitals, and water pumps, as well as emergency services – fire and police – and schools or gymnasiums that may be identified for emergency shelter usage. One project in the recovery effort was the establishment of microgrids in Puerto Rico. These microgrids assisted in providing for the complex needs of Culebra and Vieques Islands, as well as the region of Arecibo. Finally, the 249th was involved heavily in the response support by way of project scoping and ordering bills of material (BOM), ensuring quality and timely efforts were taken to assist the people of Puerto Rico. Manpower for the response has been supported by the various companies within the 249th Engineer Battalion. Personnel and equipment arrived from Schofield Barracks, Hawaii; Fort Bragg, North Carolina; Fort Belvoir, Virginia; and Cranston, Rhode Island, to perform the undertaking.


Above: Chief Warrant Officer 2 Jeremy Arnold (left) and Spc. Adam McQuiq, B Company, 249th Engineer Battalion (Prime Power), conduct a site assessment at La Plata Lake Dam, Toa Alta, Puerto Rico, Aug. 28, 2018. Right: A member of the 249th conducts a pre-inspection of the new single phase spot generator to restore power to seven meters near El Yunque, Puerto Rico, Aug. 21, 2018.

For more information about the 249th Engineer Battalion (Prime Power), visit: www.usace.army.mil/249th-Engineer-Battalion/ www.facebook.com/249thEngineerBattalion/


The 249th Engineer Battalion (Prime Power) is a versatile power-generation battalion assigned to USACE that provides commercial-level power to military units and federal relief organizations during full-spectrum operations. Additionally, the commander serves as the commandant of the U.S. Army Prime Power School, the institution responsible for the development of Army and Navy power-generation specialists. The organization is charged with the rapid provision of Army generators to support worldwide requirements. The battalion offers a variety of services including: electrical power requirement assessment and power production; transformer inspection and test analysis; maintenance and repair of power plants, substations, and government-owned or -managed distribution systems, circuit breaker, and relay maintenance; infrared surveys, medium-voltage electrical contractor oversight, and training for personnel to operate and maintain prime power distribution and generation equipment. n




he U.S. Army Geospatial Center (AGC) is a direct-reporting center under the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) to provide timely, accurate, and relevant geospatial information, domain expertise, training, and reachback capabilities to warfighters across the operational environment. As a knowledge center for geospatial engineering expertise, the AGC coordinates, integrates, and synchronizes geospatial information requirements and standards across the Army, as well as develops and fields geospatial systems and capabilities to the Army and the Department of Defense (DOD). The AGC supports the Army, DOD, and the nation through: 1) Enterprise development and system acquisition support – synchronizes geospatial policies, priorities, program strategies, and technologies across Army Acquisition, ensuring efficient integration; provides geospatial domain expertise to Army programs and Network Integration Evaluations; develops, acquires, and fields engineer and intelligence capabilities; and evaluates the Tactical Exploitation of National Capabilities. 2) Warfighter support and production – collects, creates, and provisions strategic-operational-tactical imagery, elevation data,


geospatial information, and mission-related products, provides information on water location quantity and quality and provides training, technical support, and reachback capabilities to the field. 3) Research, development, technology, and evaluation (RDT&E) – conducts RDT&E focused in current and emerging geospatial technologies that will help characterize and measure phenomena within the physical (terrain) and social (cultural) environments encountered by the Army. One of the AGC’s primary goals is to enable an Army Geospatial Enterprise (AGE), which addresses geospatial capability gaps, preventing systems from achieving a true common operating picture. The AGE enables horizontal and vertical dissemination and the exchange and synchronization of geospatial feature data between echelons. It improves continuity of operations during unit Relief in Place/Transfer of Authority and enhances and extends the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency’s data holdings with Army-produced operational and tactically relevant geospatial information. The AGE enhances Soldier situational awareness and leads to information superiority and improves commanders’ military decision-making process, ultimately improving the probability of mission success. n

BY THE NUMBERS • Civil Works: The Army Geospatial Center (AGC) is engaged in the manage-

DOD users via an online search and discovery application, requiring user registration.

ment of various civil works projects, dam safety management, inland waterways navigation, and civilian disaster relief

• High-resolution 3-D (HR3D) Data Collection:

efforts both in the continental United States and outside of

The HR3D program is composed of geospatial sensors, airborne

it. AGC is the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Survey

platforms, processing systems, and dissemination capabilities

Engineering and Mapping Technical Center of Expertise.

of the BuckEye collection systems. The goal is to rapidly collect, process, and disseminate high-resolution, high-accuracy

• Inland Electronic Navigational Charts:

geospatial data in support of tactical operations. The resulting

The U.S. inland navigation system consists of 8,200 miles of

unclassified color imagery and LIDAR-elevation data support

rivers maintained by USACE in 22 states, and includes 276 lock

improved battlefield visualization and operations planning.

chambers, with a total lift of 6,100 feet. To support efficient, effective, and safe navigation, USACE’s AGC develops,

• Warfighter products and support:

updates, and publishes electronic charts for the inland water-

- Urban Tactical Planner (UTP): The UTP assists the planning

ways. This highly structured data format is commonly used for

and visualization of military operations in the world’s urban

electronic chart applications and will be used to support all

areas. The urban environment is displayed as an aggregate of

inland navigation.

features that affect urban area operations, such as building form and function (broken out as polygons of like building

• Geospatial Library Services:

types), building height, vertical obstructions, terrain feature,

- Common Map Background (CMB): It provides digital map and

bridges, lines of communication, key cultural features, land-

image data to the warfighter. CMB utilizes a comprehensive

marks, etc.

digital data library and custom ArcGIS toolset designed to

- Engineering Route Studies (ERS): The ERS is designed to

dramatically reduce the time and expense required to acquire,

provide basic information on the major surface transportation

manage, and distribute geospatial.

systems in conjunction with terrain and climate data. The

- Geospatial Information Library: The Geospatial Information

ERS is intended to provide data at the country or operational

Library focuses on physical geography, terrain analysis and

level to assist the warfighter in planning a variety of missions,

military hydrology, and provides support to all authorized

including military operations, humanitarian relief, transporta-

Army, Department of Defense (DOD), and other government

tion studies, and drug enforcement.


- Route Recon/Clearance: The Instrument Set,

- AGC Imagery Office: The AGC Imagery Office (AIO)

Reconnaissance and Surveying (common name ENFIRE) is a

functions as the U.S. Army’s commercial imagery acquisi-

tactical engineering tool set designed to modernize the collec-

tion agent and monitor. This action is designed to prevent

tion and dissemination of engineer information to support

Army agencies and organizations from duplicating imagery

construction management and survey units. It enables the

acquisition/data purchases. The AIO is also designated

user to auto-populate bridge, road, hasty minefield, improvised

as the repository of selected commercial satellite/aerial

explosive devices, and other engineering data on standard

imagery and AGI data pertaining to terrain analysis and water

Army forms in a digital format, manage construction projects

resources operations. The AIO repository is accessible to

(to include design/build), and support route clearance.





U.S. Army Reserve Soldiers from the 449th Mobility Augmentation Company, 478th Engineer Battalion, 926th Engineer Brigade, 412th Theater Engineer Command, based in Fort Thomas, Kentucky, fire an inert mine clearing line charge during a GATE III or section gunnery and Engineer Qualification Table XII validation exercise on Fort Knox, Kentucky, Feb. 12, 2018.

command of assigned or attached units in support of ASCC assured mobility, protection, logistics, and infrastructure development lines of operation. In addition to providing wartime support, the 412th TEC performs key roles in large-scale training exercises, in contingency planning, and in theater-security cooperation plan engagements. Most of the units participating in these overseas missions and exercises were conducting their two-week extended combat training. As a key responsibility, the TEC oversees the training of its Soldiers and subordinate units. During 2018, the command enabled Soldiers from 400 subordinate units to attend numerous major events, exercises, or operations across the continental United States and the world. The TEC’s 478th Engineer Battalion based in Fort Thomas, Kentucky, made history in February 2018. All of the Battalion’s


he 412th Theater Engineer Command (TEC), headquartered at the George A. Morris U.S. Army Reserve Center in Vicksburg, Mississippi – is one of only two units of its kind in the American military. The TEC provides command and control of theater-level engineer operations levels above brigade in support of unified land operations. The TEC provides mission command of all Army Reserve engineer assets in 21 states east of the Mississippi River. The 412th Theater Engineer Command commands three brigades and five direct-reporting units (DRUs), totaling nearly 13,000 Soldiers. The brigades are the 411th Engineer Brigade based at New Windsor, New York, the 302d Maneuver Enhancement Brigade based in Chicopee, Massachusetts, and the 926th Engineer Brigade located in Montgomery, Alabama. The DRUs are the 206th Digital Liaison Detachment, the 207th Digital Liaison Detachment, the 368th Forward Engineer Support Team-Main, the 608th Construction Management Team, and the 475th Explosive Hazards Coordination Cell. The TEC is commanded by an engineer major general, who focuses the proper emphasis on unit training/readiness during peacetime employment and the proper emphasis on the theater engineer mission required for emerging threats and possible nearpeer adversaries. The TEC provides theater-wide engineer support as well as engineer support to forces deployed within a joint operations area, geospatial support, construction, real property maintenance activities, line of communications sustainment, engineer logistics management, base development, theater infrastructure repair, or development as required. It serves as the senior engineer headquarters for the theater Army as well as all assigned or attached engineer brigades and other engineer units. When directed, it may also command engineers from other services and multinational forces and provide oversight of contracted construction engineers. The TEC’s combat capabilities consist of mobility augmentation, clearance and sapper companies. The construction capabilities are vertical, horizontal, engineer support, and multirole bridge companies. The TEC mobilizes and deploys to any theater and operates as the senior engineer headquarters to command, plan, and control engineer assets within the theater of operations and acts as the senior engineer adviser to the theater commander. The TEC deploys an early-entry deployable command post (DCP) with all these capabilities, and the DCP can be expanded and tailored to the operation as the mission requires. The 412th TEC is aligned with U.S. Army Pacific. Pacific, an operational-level Army force designated by the secretary of the Army as the Army Service Component Command’s (ASCC) of the U.S. Indo-Pacific Command. The 412th TEC has responsibility of U.S. Southern Command and U.S. Northern Command. On order, the 412th TEC mobilizes and deploys to a theater of operations as the senior engineer headquarters to provide mission

Mobility Augmentation Companies, the 449th, the 450th, the 979th, and the 396th achieved T2 or the second-highest level of readiness validation after being certified in GATE III, a section-level gunnery, and Engineer Qualification Tables (EQTS) X through X11 on Fort Knox, Kentucky, Feb. 4-23, 2018. The EQTS included the firing of inert Mine Clearing Line Charges. The 478th was the first in the TEC to accomplish this feat. n

A U.S. Army Reserve M113 Armored Personnel Carrier from the 449th Mobility Augmentation Company, 478th Engineer Battalion, 926th Engineer Brigade, 412th Theater Engineer Command, based in Fort Thomas, Kentucky, crosses an armored vehicle launch bridge during a GATE III or section gunnery and Engineer Qualification table XII validation exercise on Fort Knox, Kentucky, Feb. 12, 2018.

BY THE NUMBERS • Provide command and control of theater-level engineer operations levels above brigade in support of unified land operations. • Mission command and oversees all Army Reserve engineer assets east of the Mississippi River. • Commands three brigades and five smaller direct-reporting units, totaling nearly 13,000 Soldiers. • Combat capabilities consist of mobility augmentation, clearance and sapper companies. The construction capabilities are vertical, horizontal, engineer support, and multirole bridge companies. • Aligned with U.S. Army Pacific, an operational-level Army force designated by the secretary of the Army as the Army Service Component Command’s (ASCC) of the U.S. Indo-Pacific Command. In October 2017, the 412th TEC assumed responsibility of U.S. Southern Command and U.S. Northern Command. • Performs key roles in large-scale training exercises, in contingency planning, and in-theater security cooperation plan engagements. PEACE-TIME EMPLOYMENT • Executes mission command of all Army Reserve engineer units east of the Mississippi, with additional military police, chemical, and signal units, ensuring trained and ready forces available to U.S. Army Forces Command (FORSCOM) and U.S. Army Reserve Command (USARC). • Supports and participates in FORSCOM/USARC training exercises in the continental United States and combatant command/ Army service component command (COCOM/ASCC) exercises and training opportunities outside the continental United States to maintain unit readiness. • Maintains constant communications with USACE and the Army ASCC to ensure continuous support focused on the long-term goals of both organizations in their areas of responsibility (AORs). • Maintains communications/ties with sister-service engineer organizations, in order to enhance joint readiness and interoperability. WARTIME EMPLOYMENT • Manages and executes the ASCC’s maneuver support mission at theater level. The TEC is modular and scalable, enhancing its versatility. (It deploys in part, combination, or in its entirety.)

• Executes mission command for all Army theater engineer assets in the ASCC AOR and is expandable enough to manage the joint, allied/coalition engineer effort, as well as many contracted construction operations. • Supports engineer operational-level planning, coordination, and technical services supporting the ASCC, geographic combatant command, or joint task force (JTF). • Participates in joint civil engineering support planning in support of the ASCC/combatant command. • Provides command and control of theater-level engineer operations levels above brigade in support of unified land operations. • Provides trained and ready forces in support of global operations utilizing the Army force generation model; and provides policies, guidance, resourcing, and administrative support as an operational command over assigned Army Reserve units. • Provides command and control of assigned or attached engineer brigades, groups, and other engineer units engaged in general, geospatial and combat engineering missions for an ASCC or JTF. • Provides engineer support to joint exercises, humanitarian civil assistance, exercise-related construction, installation-related construction and theater security cooperation plans, and partnership for peace missions. • Operates as the senior engineer headquarters to command, plan, and control engineer assets within the theater of operations. The TEC supports an ASCC or JTF in a theater. • Operates as the senior engineer headquarters to command, plan, and control engineer assets within the theater of operations. • Develops and validates plans, procedures, and programs for theater-level engineer mission command and support to the ASCCs. • Communicates to the ASCCs the capabilities of the theater engineer commands and opportunities where the TEC can support those commands. 412th Theater Engineer Command 1265 Porters Chapel Rd. Vicksburg, MS 39180 (601) 631-6103



416th THEATER ENGINEER COMMAND Strategic planning and the decision-making process BY SGT. 1st CL ASS JASON PROSEUS


commander’s job is to lead and take care of her troops. With the mission command of several thousand engineer Soldiers and several units at echelons, from companies to brigades, a commander needs to decipher a lot of information. The sheer amount of information can be overwhelming. Each headquarters at all levels have shops with specific purpose in the day-to-day operations of mission completion, and support of units they have mission command over. This comes in the form of operations, personnel, logistics, and many other activities. These shops have the responsibility of taking current status of their respective area of expertise and compartmentalizing the data to provide commanders with a situational understanding. This will allow commanders to make informed decisions on planning for operations at the strategic level. Both the 416th Theater Engineer Command (TEC) Headquarters and the Deployable Command Post (DCP), a rapidly deployable headquarters


element capable of providing mission command forward of the actual TEC Headquarters, practiced their ability to provide the engineer expertise to a higher-command element in an exercise environment. The DCP travelled to Wiesbaden, Germany, to U.S. Army Europe (USAEUR) Headquarters to practice its Military Decision Making Process (MDMP) flow, as they received requests for technical engineer input from the USAEUR engineer staff, for multiple European exercises. “Within the exercises, we are maintaining an understanding of what forces are needed for this exercise for engineer requirements, such as facilities, construction, and/or support to other host-nation capabilities or other adjacent engineers, such as route clearance, defense measures,” said Cpt. Joshua Greene, facilities and construction lead, 416th Theater Engineer Command, Darien, Illinois. In the exercises, the DCP is given a notional situation. They then take real-world engineer knowledge and plug it into the situation to first

BY THE NUMBERS Opposite: Commanding general of the 416th Theater Engineer Command, Maj. Gen. Miyako Schanely, addresses the staff of Headquarters and Headquarters Company 416th Theater Engineer Command in Darien, Illinois, during Combat Support Training Exercise (CSTX) 18-02, Aug. 18, 2018, at Fort McCoy, Wisconsin.

analyze the mission, then identify what problems are out there, and come up with courses of action to solve these problems. “It all comes back to mission analysis, and that’s a great thing to see in this unit,” said Maj. Jacob Spriggs, an observer controller trainer, from 84th Training Command’s Pacific Division, 2nd Brigade, Denver, Colorado. “They really spend the time to develop the battlefield, to try and understand, and really look in detail at all of the facets of the mission they’re assigned to, to come to a valid course of action that will enable the commander to make the right decisions.” Briefings and practice briefings are a good way for the DCP team to show its progress as they move forward in this decision-making process, but it also allows the commander and other experienced leaders with an opportunity to provide feedback in order to fine tune plans along the path of taking problem identification, to course of action development, and eventually to implementation. “It’s our job as the staff to provide the commander with as much of the operational environment as possible. So, if we have gaps in the information we’re providing the commander, the commander won’t be able to make the best decision possible,” said Col. Julia Sweet, officer in charge, Deployable Command Post, 416th Theater Engineer Command, Darien, Illinois. The team is relatively new to each other, but not the planning process. They’ve overcome the obstacles of learning to work together through this exercise and shown they have the ability to develop products informing higher of the best way forward in missions and operations. “They’re leaps and bounds further than I thought they would be, on this process. We went through the whole ‘Storming, Forming, Norming’ process. The team works well together, communication’s great. No issues, and the products they’re producing is phenomenal,” said Sweet. The 416th Theater Engineer Command Headquarters travelled to Fort McCoy, Wisconsin, to take part in Combined Support Training Exercise (CSTX) 18-02, so the group could practice the strategic planning process in an austere environment. This meant bringing all of the equipment, tents, and Command Post of the Future (CPOF) computers to the field, to stay in tents, and get notionally attacked by opposing force, all while answering the demand for engineer input from higher headquarters. “That is our mission,” said Lt. Col. Larry Ray, current operations officer in charge, G33, 416th Theater Engineer Command. “We have to do it where the fight is. To show that with limited resources, we’re still able to continue our strategic planning for follow-on missions.” n

The 416th Theater Engineer Command (TEC) is a major subordinate command of the U.S. Army Reserve Command that provides engineerplanning support to U.S. Central Command, U.S. Europe Command, and U.S. Africa Command. The 416th TEC is headquartered near Chicago in the suburb of Darien. The 416th TEC provides trained, ready, and resilient Soldiers, leaders, and units in support of global operations. The TEC operates as the senior engineer headquarters to perform mission command over engineer assets within supported geographic combatant command areas of responsibility. As directed, the TEC operates as a joint task force headquarters, performing mission command over other joint and multinational forces as assigned. On order, the 416th TEC conducts theater-level engineer operations supporting a joint force, executing full-spectrum operations while providing trained and ready units to support mission requirements world-wide. The 416th TEC leads more than 150 different companies and detachments in 26 western states and the District of Columbia, encompassing more than 12,500 Soldiers, two engineer brigades, one maneuver enhancement brigade, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) contingency response unit (CRU). The 416th TEC contains engineer units that specialize in technical engineer support. These units comprise of the CRU, two forward engineer support team-main (FEST-M), 10 forward engineer supportadvance (FEST-A), 10 engineer facility detachments (EFD), and two construction management teams (CMT). These units are capable of providing myriad engineer services: • construction management for theater-level troop/activity concentrations and facilities • facility engineering and management to support base development • infrastructure engineering planning and technical expertise, contract construction, real estate acquisition/disposal, environmental engineering and geospatial support • initial infrastructure assessments and surveys • operational and engineering mission command support for disaster relief missions and overseas contingency operations Recent deployments include Operation Desert Shield/Storm, Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation Freedom’s Sentinel, Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF), Operation New Dawn, and Operation Inherent Resolve. During the first deployment in support of OIF, the command oversaw the planning and construction of several prisoner-of-war camps, U.S. military logistics bases, and a 230-mile-long Inland Petroleum Distribution System – the largest-ever constructed in wartime by the U.S. Army – from Kuwait through the southern desert of Iraq to ensure the availability of fuel for the units moving forward. The 416th TEC serves as the principal engineer force provider and engineer planner for annual exercises across the globe such as Resolute Castle in Cincu, Romania. Resolute Castle emphasizes engineer construction capabilities. The 416th Theater Engineer Command motto is “Serving by Building.” 416th Theater Engineer Command 10S100 S. Frontage Rd. Darien, IL 60561 (630) 739-7108 www.usar.army.mil/416thTEC/ www.facebook.com/416thTEC/ twitter.com/416thTEC www.flickr.com/photos/416thengineers/ www.instagram.com/416tecengineers/



A barge heading down the Arkansas River.



he U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Institute for Water Resources (IWR) was established to provide forward-looking analysis, cutting-edge methodologies, and innovative tools to aid the Civil Works program. The institute strives to improve the performance of the USACE water resources program by examining water resources problems and offering practical solutions through a wide variety of technology transfer mechanisms. It fulfills its mission through: • analysis of emerging water resources trends and issues; • development, distribution, and training in the use of state-of-theart methods and models in the areas of planning, operations, and civil engineering; • national data management of results-oriented program and project information across civil works business lines. IWR has offices in five locations, with its National Capital Region (NCR) headquarters in Alexandria, Virginia.


Navigation and Civil Works Decision Support Center (NDC), also in Alexandria, provides a critical mass of expertise focusing on the management of infrastructure utilization and performance information for USACE programs and projects spanning civil works business lines. NDC directly supports the USACE navigation, hydropower, recreation, environmental compliance, water supply, regulatory, homeland security, emergency, and readiness functions. NDC also provides integrated business information in support of USACE operational decision-making through management of Civil Works Business Intelligence (CWBI), a strategic initiative to provide an integrated capability for the management and tracking of performance of USACE program execution through geospatially enabled data, coupled with decision support systems. It is an important tool used in the development and defense of the USACE Civil Works budget. NDC’s Waterborne Commerce Statistics Center (WCSC), New Orleans, Louisiana, specializes in the collection and synthesis of all U.S. waterborne commerce statistics and vessel movement data, along with maintaining information on vessel characteristics, port facilities, dredging cost, and performance data and information on navigation locks. The mission of the Conflict Resolution and Public Participation Center of Expertise (CPCX), Alexandria, Virginia, is to help USACE field practitioners anticipate, prevent, and manage water conflicts, ensuring that the interests of the public are addressed in water resources decision-making. The CPCX provides technical assistance and training


Example of hydrologic models produced by IWR’s Hydrologic Engineering Center (HEC).

and organizations sharing an interest in the advancement of the science and practice of integrated water resources management (IWRM) around the globe. ICIWaRM was formalized as a United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) “Category 2” water center in 2009, the first such center in the United States. ICIWaRM serves as a nexus for technology transfer, integrating new ideas, and advancing practical scientific and technological applications of IWRM approaches developed both in the United States and by partner nations within UNESCO’s International Hydrological Program (IHP). The center focuses on water security, adapting to global change, applying collaborative approaches, and ensuring environmental sustainability, consistent with the “U.S. Government Global Water Strategy 2017.” ICIWaRM is also the technical secretariat for IHP’s Global Network on Water and Development Information for Arid Lands, or G-WADI. n

IWR Director Joe D. Manous Jr., P.E., Ph.D., D.WRE.


to USACE division and district offices as well as other stakeholders on collaborative processes, facilitation, public involvement, risk communication, and collaborative modeling (shared vision planning). CPCX also supports USACE-HQ on relevant aspects of national initiatives and policy development and coordinates USACE’s cross-cutting Collaboration and Public Participation Community of Practice. The Hydrologic Engineering Center (HEC) in Davis, California, is world renowned for its applied software model development, training, and consulting in hydrologic and hydraulic engineering, water resources planning, and water systems management. The primary mission of HEC is to support the nation in its water resources management responsibilities by enhancing USACE technical capacity in applied hydrologic and hydraulic engineering. Its additional mission goals include providing technical leadership in improving the analytical methods for the hydrologic aspects of water resources planning and in the delivery and application of the integrated suite of models serving as the USACE Water Management System, which is used by the major subordinate command and district’s water management offices in the real-time operation of reservoirs throughout the nation. HEC models represent state-of-the-art tools that are widely used throughout the world. The mission of the Risk Management Center (RMC), with offices in Lakewood, Colorado, and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, is to support the USACE Civil Works program by providing a nationally consistent context for managing and assessing risks associated with dam and levee systems across USACE, to support dam and levee safety activities throughout USACE, and to develop policies, methods, tools, and systems to enhance those activities. The RMC also assists USACE Headquarters in the technical and policy oversight of infrastructure safety decisions, and serves as an independent technical adviser to USACE senior leadership, maintaining and developing risk competencies and helping ensure consistency of risk assessment processes, the application of risk criteria, and the basis for decision-making on dam and levee safety projects across USACE. International Center for Integrated Water Resources Management (ICIWaRM), Alexandria, Virginia, was established in collaboration with other U.S. agencies, academic institutions,

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Institute for Water Resources 7701 Telegraph Rd., Casey Bldg. Alexandria, VA 22315-3688 (703) 428-8250 1 57



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n 1996, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Finance Center (UFC) was officially established to reduce the cost and improve the overall quality of financial management for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE). Development and deployment of the Corps of Engineers Financial Management System (CEFMS) II along with operating finance and accounting functions was consolidated into one location at USACE Finance Center in Millington, Tennessee. UFC is primarily responsible for setting the strategic direction and providing operational finance and accounting functions by assisting USACE worldwide with day-to-day support. This support includes, but is not limited to, the full range of customer service, payments, disbursing, accounting, and financial reporting for civil works and military programs’ appropriated funds, and revolving and trust funds. In addition, UFC is responsible for performing research, analysis, development, installation, and systems maintenance for the CEFMS II. This mission is accomplished with a dedicated, professional staff of accountants, accounting technicians, information management personnel, and various other support personnel. Along with the desire to maintain a highly motivated staff, the Finance Center is always aware and concerned about the costs of operation. UFC proactively searches for ways to reduce costs by identifying and eliminating duplicative processes, taking advantage of leading technology, and encouraging e-commerce. The center strives to achieve the commander’s vision while continually improving business processes and financial systems. The Finance Center’s Vision Statement includes four major tenets: • The premier, world-class provider of finance and accounting services. • The trusted, innovative financial partner of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. • One organization, one identity. • The employer of choice, providing a progressive and professional work environment. First, UFC aims to be the premier, world-class provider of finance and accounting services. In efforts to remain competitive and a best value to customers, the UFC will endeavor to adjust its structure to meet the needs of USACE, the Army, and all valued customers to further enhance performance in finance and accounting and revolutionize effectiveness. Second, UFC aspires to fully satisfy customer requirements and aggressively resolve problems in order to deliver best value, quality services. These high-quality results are achieved by implementing performance metrics to drive best business practices. Since the mission encompasses the world and brings together many diverse program areas of USACE, the Finance Center partners with the districts,

Kevin Heath, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) disbursing officer, provides assistance to employees at the USACE Finance Center.

divisions, labs, and separate field operating activities to leverage on the complex, fully integrated financial management system, CEFMS II, to provide world-class support and accomplish the mission. Today, UFC and all USACE activities can query financial data in real time through a web browser. This innovative capability is demonstrated by increased use of e-commerce and e-government technology providing a paperless, seamless environment, increasing accuracy and lowering costs for customers. As a result, the UFC is truly the financial partner at work. Next, the third tenet, the consolidation of the UFC, was necessary to allow the USACE to improve its internal operations; standardize and integrate the financial operations, procedures, and systems; implement best business practices; and reduce cost to the customers. Under this principle, the UFC persists to improve corporate quality and value. Finally, the Finance Center supports continuous learning for the workforce to ensure critical, high-quality skill sets. One of the main goals is to be able to develop the next generation of leadership by investing in the employees. Receiving a “Best Place to Work” award, UFC communicates openly and honestly; treats everyone with fairness and respect; follows through on commitments; and demonstrates accountability and integrity as a team. n U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Finance Center 5722 Integrity Dr. Building 787 Millington, TN 38054-5005 (901) 873-9000 www.usace.army.mil/Finance-Center/


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The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) operates and maintains more than 715 dams nationwide and in Puerto Rico that provide significant, multiple benefits to the nation – its people, businesses, critical infrastructure, and the environment. These benefits include flood risk management, navigation, water supply, hydropower, environmental stewardship, fish and wildlife conservation, and recreation. USACE’s dams are part of our nation’s landscape, integral to many communities and critical to watershed management. Our dam safety professionals carry out a dam safety program to make sure these projects deliver their intended benefits while reducing risks to people, property, and the environment through continuous assessment, communication, and management. By comparison, there are more than 90,000 dams in the National Inventory of Dams (NID) that are federally, state, locally, and privately operated and maintained. More information on the NID can be found here: nid.usace. army.mil/cm_apex/f?p=838:12.


Dam operator Kirk Wirth monitors Foster Joseph Sayers Dam after Tropical Depression Florence’s rains by measuring the water level, water pressure against the earthen structure, and outflows downstream. After rainfall from Tropical Depression Gordon had already inundated Foster Joseph Sayers Lake and Tropical Depression Florence was on its way, Baltimore District personnel answered the call to protect the surrounding communities from major floods.

Salutes the federal government for completion of the 2017-2018 Northern California Wildfire Debris Removal Mission

Learn more about the response in the September/ October 2018 Issue of The Military Engineer (TME) Magazine


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Levee systems are part of our nation’s landscape and important to communities because of the benefits they provide. For example, more than 10 million people live or work behind levees in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ (USACE) Levee Safety Program. And, public and private properties worth more than $1 trillion are behind these levees. USACE created its Levee Safety Program with the mission to assess the integrity and viability of levees and recommend courses of action to make sure that levee systems in the USACE portfolio do not present unacceptable risks to the public, property, and environment. Accomplishments of this program include creation of the National Levee Database (levees.sec.usace.army.mil/#/), which serves as a central national source of levee information for use on activities such as flood risk management and risk communication; improved inspection protocol; and development of a methodology for performing risk assessments on levee systems. USACE uses this information to help stakeholders better understand their flood risk. The USACE levee portfolio includes more than 2,500 levee systems.


Construction crews for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Sacramento District install a seepage cutoff wall in an American River levee near Del Paso Boulevard in Sacramento, California.