RICHMOND, Va. –
The Defense Supply Center Richmond, Virginia, opened its new East Gate located off of U.S. Route 1 in Chesterfield County April 26.
The new East Gate replaces the original guard post and entry gate on U.S. Route 1 that was built in the 1950s. As a result of advances in security as well as technology throughout the years, the old gate lacked current anti-terrorism/physical security and traffic safety/control features required in today’s environment.
“The new gate is a state-of-the-art facility that has been designed and constructed according to Defense Department anti-terrorism standards,” said DSCR project manager for the build, Alexander Vazquez, a general engineer with Defense Logistics Agency Installation Management Richmond. “It includes physical and electronic security measures that are in compliance with DOD requirements and that will keep the DSCR workforce and all who visit safe for many years to come.”
With a ticket price of $7.5 million, this military construction project began Feb. 28, 2018. As a result of the coordination between government employees and contractors from DSCR, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Norfolk, Virginia District and SAW Contracting, Virginia Beach, Virginia, the final inspections, testing, and training took place during March and April.
To prepare for the opening and daily operating of the new gate, also referred to as an access control point, DLA Installation Management Richmond Police Department on DSCR worked with the Physical Security, Anti-Terrorism Office as well as DLA Information Operations for the outfitting and operation of the new security features All officers were trained on the various procedures and processes of ensuring safe and secure base access.
According to Russell Pitts, the installation’s anti-terrorism officer, the police department not only learned about new security enhancements, but they also had to familiarize themselves with the new traffic patterns. In addition, the ATO had to obtain certifications in Level II anti-terrorism, physical security and security engineering. These classes assisted Pitts’ ability to conduct assessments and provide technical assistance.
“The new East Gate will be capable of safely funneling a larger number of employees through than the old East Gate due to wider lanes and longer entry points,” said police coordinator for the transition to the new East Gate, Police Capt. Anthony Coniglio with the Security and Emergency Services Division for DLA Installation Management Richmond. “The implementation of this new gate will limit the excess of vehicles waiting on Route 1 to turn left into the installation during peak traffic hours.”
With the implementation of this new gate will come new traffic patterns.
“It will take some time for everyone to get used to the new traffic patterns,” Coniglio said. “The police department asks that caution be used while adjusting to these changes.”
The new gate hours of operation are Monday through Friday 5 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
According to the Congressional Research Service, the security of federal government buildings affects not only the daily operations of the federal government but also the health, well-being, and safety of federal employees and the public.