CMRR project update leaves unanswered questions

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By Roger Snodgrass

A much-discussed topic in recent days and months, the Chemistry and Metallurgy Research Replacement (CMRR) facility, had another public airing Tuesday night.This time the semiannual meeting was at Fuller Lodge. About 30 people attended, mostly employees of Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) and the Department of Energy (DOE), as well as others affiliated with the project, but also several representatives of the “interested parties,” the seven public interest groups named in a legal settlement in September 2005.By the end of the evening, members of the “interested parties” expressed disappointment that the four pages of questions they had prepared and submitted well in advance were not more fully answered during the two-hour meeting.The agreement under the auspices of the state environmental department spelled out the terms by which an air-quality permit was granted to the first two phases of the CMRR project, which have to do with the Radiological Laboratory/Utility Office Building (RLUOB) the smaller of the two buildings under construction and its utility area.RLUOB has a projected cost of $164 million and aims for occupancy and operations in 2010.Tom Whitacre of the DOE site office gave a project overview of the RLUOB construction, now considered 40-percent complete, with an emphasis on progress during the fall and winter seasons.

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