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Fort Gillem makes way for new developments

Fort Gillem, a U.S. Army base south of the Atlanta-Hartsfield International Airport, started a phased decommissioning process in 2005 with the sale of 1,170 acres to the City of Forest Park. The city began marketing the property, which resulted in leasing parcels of land to private developers for warehouse and business park development.

fort-gillem-entranceTo make way for the new developments, some of the old brick buildings that populated the former Army base had to be carefully removed to preserve some of the bricks for historic purposes, while other buildings were completely destroyed.

The demolition company charged with removing the buildings initially had six months to complete the project. The company ordered excavators, skid steers, loaders, trucks and a dozer for staging on the property over a Friday and Saturday. The following Monday, the demolition began.

As with any long-term demolition project, equipment gets beat up and worn from the dust, debris and rocks bouncing off equipment. To help ensure that the contractor met his deadlines, mechanics were on the job site every working day to check on equipment, and to perform any maintenance and repairs.

The six-month project was stretched to a year with change orders.

The job site also had contaminated soil and had been identified as a Super Fund site. An environmental remediation company also rented equipment to remove some of the soil.

When the demolition project was completed, the City of Forest Park announced that Kroger had agreed to open a $175 million, one million-square-foot, state-of-the-art distribution center on 253 acres of the former army base. The city had partnered with a master developer to transform the land into a logistics center.

Neff Rental’s Forest Park branch supplied the equipment and provided 24/7 service and support for the Fort Gillem demolition and part of the environmental remediation projects, as well as for part of the Kroger warehouse development. For more information about Neff Rental, visit or call 888-709-NEFF.

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