Historic nuke plant in Virginia to be fully dismantled

FORT BELVOIR, Va. (AP) — Plans are underway to completely dismantle the first nuclear power facility that provided electricity to the U.S. power grid.

In December, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers proposed fully removing the SM-1 Reactor Facility at Fort Belvoir in Fairfax County, Virginia, WTOP reported Saturday. The project will now go out to bid and is expected to begin in 2021 with a projected end date of 2025.

The reactor opened in 1957 and was decommissioned in 1973. Dismantling began over 40 years ago when the Army Corps removed a majority of the radioactive material, which was taken to a storage site in South Carolina.

Remaining buildings include the reactor plant as well as many labs that were on the site. They will all be removed along with any radioactive contamination exceeding regulatory level, the station reported.

The Army Corps of Engineers says there is little to no danger of radioactivity on the site once the facility is removed.

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