New temporary gate at Humphreys will be on north side of post
November 3, 2006
PYEONGTAEK, South Korea — Workers at Camp Humphreys are building a temporary gate that will enable construction vehicles headed for the Zoeckler Station work site to bypass one of the post’s more traffic-heavy areas.
Zoeckler Station, in the post’s northeast, is currently the site of several major construction projects.
Those projects include a $27 million twin barracks and dining hall complex set for a grand opening Nov. 9.
The newest temporary gate is going in on the post’s north, near the Desiderio Army Airfield runway.
Currently, most construction vehicles must enter and leave Camp Humphreys through its CPX gate.
Once workers finish the new temporary gate, Camp Humphreys will have four temporary construction gates.
“They all are intended to alleviate construction traffic, which will make the roadway safer because it will divert traffic from the heavily traveled and heavily populated areas of the installation,” Camp Humphreys spokeswoman Susan Barkley said.
“It also is a positive because it will reduce the stress on the infrastructure,” she said. “If you’ve got, say, a heavy cement mixer full of cement, instead of traveling all the way from the CPX gate to Zoeckler Station, they’ll only have to go a shorter distance. So there’ll be a lot less wear and tear on the roads.”
Vehicles moving between the CPX gate and Zoeckler Station construction site currently travel past Beacon Hill, the post’s main gate, and its pedestrian, or so-called “walk-in gate.”
“The area is constant traffic and people crossing (the) street, especially from pedestrian gate,” said Ronnie Lee, chief of master planning for the Army’s Area III Support Activity public works department. “However, the portion between the new gate and the Zoeckler Station construction site — there’s no heavy traffic at all.”
The existing temporary construction gates are Mool gate, a gate at the post’s MP Hill and the Hamjeong gate south of MP Hill, officials said.
The Mool gate is the only temporary gate currently in use. Construction vehicles use it but are restricted to a work site in its immediate vicinity and not permitted to traverse other parts of the post.
Post officials can’t open the other construction gates to traffic until the South Korean government transfers to the U.S. military lands on which those gates are located, Barkley said.
South Korea is in the process of turning over thousands of acres to the military to enable Camp Humphreys to expand under terms of a South Korea-U.S. agreement.
The post eventually will triple in size and become the U.S. military’s main installation on the peninsula.
In addition, South Korea’s defense ministry is weighing what safety and other impact the newest gate’s use might have on bordering village Wonjong-ri, Lee said.
Lee said defense ministry officials told him they met Monday with village representatives and intend to hold another meeting soon “to try to come up with … something mutually agreeable.”