>Tuesday, June 13 at 11:45 AM
>Lenny Siegel                                                                                                      
>Save Hangar One
>Lenny Siegel is executive director of the Center for Public Environmental Oversight,
>a non-profit organization that promotes and facilitates public participation in the
>oversight of environmental activities at federal facilities, private "Superfund" sites,
>and Brownfields. Lenny is also founder of the Alliance for a New Moffett Field and
>a spokesperson for the Save Hangar One Committee.  
>Lenny will review the engineering evaluation/cost analysis (EE/CA) for Hangar #1
>recently released by the U.S. Navy, and discuss the efforts of local historic
>preservation activists to lobby for a non-demolition alternative. The EE/CA summarizes
>the evaluation of 13 alternatives for dealing with the contamination, and describes
>the Navy’s recommended alternative (complete demolition and offsite disposal).
Lenny began his talk by pointing out that Hanger One is one of the largest free standing building in the United States. It is 1133 feet long, 200 feet high, and is by far the most recognizable building in Santa Clara County. Most long term residents of the Peninsula have many fond memories of seeing it on their way past Moffett Field. Some even remember seeing the USS Macon, a giant helium airship so big it could work as an aircraft carrier, land there.

Lenny explained that as part of the remedial investigation of the wetlands at the end of the runway, a NASA environmental official had found some rare PCBs (polychlorinated biphenyls) in the land and had traced them back to Hangar One. Further research had brought to light that the walls of Hangar One are made of Galbestos, a sandwich of galvanized steel, PCBs, and Asbestos. The Navy now wants to tear the building down. They think they can do it for about $12 million.

Save Hanger One was organized last summer to prevent this from happening. Lenny waved a NASA study that he says shows the costs not included in the Navy analysis bring the actual costs of removing the building to $30 million, about what it would cost to remove the Galbestos siding and replace it with something that looks similar enough but isn't toxic. There have been public meetings about the future of Moffett Field where Save Hangar One turned out hundreds of people who expressed support for Hangar One to the Navy.

The leading proposal on what to do with the building if it is saved is to put a museum there. (The most recent TASC speaker spoke on that, please see http://www.mv-voice.com/story.php?story_id=1607 for more information.) Space World has succeeded in putting together a blue ribbon board, including names like Astronaut Sally Ride and Hollywood's James Cameron, but they are all too busy with other projects to do much work on the fundraising.

Lenny is looking for all kinds of help on the project of Saving Hanger One. If you know people with power and influence, he would be grateful if you would enlist their help in saving Hangar One. If you have time to write a letter or email to the Navy in support of Hanger One, the address is:

Mr. Rick Weissenborn
BRAC Environmental Coordinator
Navy BRAC PMO West
1455 Frazee Road Ste 900
San Diego, CA 92108-4310

During Q&A the following came up:

The general attitude in the Save Hangar One community is "let's save the building before we get into an argument about what to do with it next."

If Hangar One is torn down, the air safety rules limit the size of any replacement building to 70 feet tall. The site is probably not suitable for housing because it is right next to a working airport. There is also a lot of TCE contamination in the area that might make direct reuse a bit of a problem.

For more information please visit:


Tian Harter