Fort Monroe Redevelopment
Matrix Environmental Services (MES), a subsidiary of Matrix Design Group, was retained in 2006 as part of the team chosen by the Federal Area Development Authority (FADA) to develop a reuse plan for the 570-acre Fort Monroe site, Hampton, Virginia. Fort Monroe has been continuously occupied since 1834 and has been home to a variety of U.S. Army activities.
From 1834 to the early 1970s, Fort Monroe was used as a coastal defense fort and coastal artillery school. Since 1973, the installation has been used primarily for administrative purposes and currently operates as a joint Department of Defense facility surrounded by a concentration of four star commands including the Training and Doctrine Command, Air Combat Command, U.S. Fleet Forces Command, Joint Forces Command, and NATO Allied Command. In 2005, Congress approved the closure of Fort Monroe for military purposes pursuant to the federal Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) Commission’s recommendations.
MES’s initial responsibilities related to the development of the reuse plan included identifying environmental opportunities and constraints directly affecting the formulation of the plan and participating in planning charettes with the public during the development of the plan.
Work completed to-date by MES as part of the initial reuse planning effort include the following: providing a summary of known environmental conditions and conditions of potential environmental concern obtained during a review of historical literature and U.S. Army environmental investigation reports; providing an interpretation of investigation and remediation requirements prior to reuse; and conducting technical presentations to the FADA and public regarding the environmental conditions of the property.
In 2008, MES was retained directly by the Fort Monroe Federal Area Development Authority (FMFADA) and later by the FMFADA’s predecessor, the Fort Monroe Authority (FMA), to provide ongoing environmental consulting services related to reuse and redevelopment of the site. Acting as the FMFADA/FMA’s technical expert, MES provided evidence that aided in compelling the U.S. Army to complete an environmental impact statement evaluating the base closure and reuse options in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).
MES has also served and continues to serve as the FADA/FMFADA/FMA’s technical representative for the BRAC cleanup team. Working in conjunction with the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (VDEQ) and the U.S. Army, MES developed a comprehensive sitewide environmental investigation approach. This approach was implemented by the U.S. Army to determine if the site was burdened with munitions and explosives of concern (which were used historically in support of the coastal defense and artillery school missions) and environmental contamination from hazardous materials.
MES is currently working with the VDEQ and the U.S. Army to develop cleanup criteria, remediation/cleanup action plans, and a land use control implementation plan consistent with the reuse plan for the property. MES is also working with the FMA on determining the fiscal impact of environmental cleanup related to the economic valuation of the property and the preparation of an economic development conveyance application for the site.