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Demolitions Clear Way for Fleet Readiness at Pearl Harbor

Navy NewsStand

Story Number: NNS091017-05
Release Date: 10/17/2009 10:44:00 AM

By James Johnson, Naval Facilities Engineering Command Hawaii Public Affairs

PEARL HARBOR (NNS) -- In Hawaii, the Navy's Demolition Footprint Reduction Program is a high priority. The goal is to reduce infrastructure inventory by 20 percent as part of the Navy Shore Vision 2035.

"It's an ambitious goal," said Naval Facilities Engineering Command Hawaii Public Works Officer Cmdr. Lore Aguayo. "We have a couple of ways to reduce infrastructure; the first is to demolish a facility and not build anything in its place, or build a facility that makes it possible to consolidate several other buildings, which can then be torn down."

The elaborate preparatory work and careful demolition are carried out under the Navy's Demolition Footprint Reduction Program, which has been in effect since 1998. This program is part of a long term effort, called the Navy Shore Vision 2035, to revamp Navy infrastructure.

Reducing infrastructure saves the Navy money. Old facilities use more resources like water and electricity than their newer counterparts, because they were not built to the energy efficiency and sustainability standards in use today. Older facilities also cost more to maintain. Every year, these buildings drain limited resources, which could be better used elsewhere.

Building 193, formerly used by the Family Services Center, was demolished in 2008, and it is estimated that the removal will save $150,500 in building maintenance costs each year. These savings will help recapitalize infrastructure and other needs.

As Navy missions and programs evolve, old facilities sometimes find themselves in less than ideal locations. Therefore, when a building is torn down, it is not always replaced by a new facility built in the same space. That is what happened with the Family Services Center. New buildings to fit those needs have been built in locations better suited for their current uses, which allows the old lots to remain vacant. Those areas are either paved or landscaped, whichever makes best use of the newly acquired space.

Demolishing a building is not as straightforward as sending in the bulldozer or wrecking ball. The Navy recognizes the need to be good stewards of the environment and to preserve historically important buildings.

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