The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Philadelphia District is providing initial planning and engineering support for the States of New Jersey and Delaware to address possible medical facility shortages due to the COVID-19 Pandemic. The mission, in support of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the two states, is part of a nationwide federal, state and local effort to respond to the public health emergency.
The USACE Philadelphia District has formed teams and conducted initial site assessments at multiple locations in New Jersey. Similar site assessments will take place at multiple locations in Delaware. The teams will provide assessments to the states that provide information on the possible conversion of existing buildings into alternate-care-facilities.
Other USACE Districts are providing similar support to other states, including the Baltimore District, which is leading USACE support in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania (the Philadelphia District is also providing assessments in its normal Pennsylvania area of responsibility).
During emergencies, USACE is the federal government’s lead public works and engineering support agency. As part of the unified national response to emergencies, USACE deploys hundreds of people to provide technical engineering expertise.
Lt. Gen. Todd T. Semonite, USACE Commanding General and the 54th U.S. Army Chief of Engineers, addressed specifics of the medical facilities mission assignment during a March 20 news conference with Secretary of the Army Ryan McCarthy; Chief of Staff of the Army Gen. James McConville; and Army Surgeon General Lt. Gen. Scott Dingle.
About the USACE Philadelphia District:
Established in 1866, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Philadelphia District manages water resources of the Delaware River basin; builds facilities for the Army and Air Force; and provides engineering and environmental services for other agencies. We serve more than nine million people across portions of Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania. Our reach extends around the world with our support to Overseas Contingency Operations.
Most of our employees work out of the home office in the Wanamaker Building across from Philadelphia’s City Hall, with the rest at field locations throughout the District’s 15,000-square-mile geographic area.