Costs Keep Rising For Nuclear Facility

Los Alamos – Time and concerns about earthquake safety have driven up projected costs for a large nuclear facility now being designed at Los Alamos National Laboratory.

Division leader Rick Holmes says rough estimates for the Chemistry and Metallurgy Research Replacement are now in the range of $4.5 billion, up from an original projection of $600 million, and many analysts assume costs will increase even more.

The project that originally was expected to be finished in 2012 is now slated to stretch to 2020 for completion and 2022 for occupancy.

Holmes says issues centered on earthquake safety at the site have added significantly to the cost. The building will require more concrete, structural steel, ventilation ducts and cable. Additionally, soil must be replaced at the bottom.


Information from: Los Alamos Monitor,

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.