After a flip-flop that lasted for weeks, the parent company of Savannah River Site's top contractor again has been selected to operate a radioactive-waste disposal facility in New Mexico.
Washington Group International Inc. will be the lead partner in a five-year, $500 million deal to operate the U.S. Department of Energy's Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, or WIPP, near Carlsbad, N.M. Company executives announced the deal Friday.
The Energy Department first selected Washington Group on Oct. 12, only to withdraw its offer after the company altered its proposal. After that incident, the Energy Department asked Washington Group and its competitor, Day & Zimmermann Inc., for revised bids to operate the plant.
Friday's announcement was the second time this week that Washington Group has won new business from the Energy Department.
In a deal announced Tuesday, the firm will be the minority partner in a 10-year, $4 billion deal to design, build and operate a radioactive-waste treatment plant at Hanford Site in Washington state.
Washington Group also is seeking a renewal of its contract to operate SRS. The company's government-services unit, which will manage operations at Hanford, WIPP and SRS, is building a $6 million headquarters in downtown Aiken.
At WIPP, Washington Group will operate through a subsidiary called Westinghouse TRU Solutions LLC. Washington Group is the minority owner of Westinghouse TRU Solutions, with Roy F. Weston Inc. serving as minority partner.
Previous incarnations of Westinghouse had operated WIPP since 1985.
"Our experience in building, licensing and opening the plant, and our long history as a contractor and mine operator make this contract a perfect fit with our long-term objectives and the goals of the federal government," said Dennis R. Washington, chairman and chief executive officer of Washington Group, in a statement.
Reach Brandon Haddock at (706) 823-3409.