A new perimeter fence separating Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall and Arlington National Cemetery provides a new level of security for the joint base along its eastern border.
The goal is to secure the perimeter of JBM-HH to protect its occupants and assets with a nonvehicular rated anticlimb fence and K8-rated vehicular barriers where necessary.
Sagres Construction was awarded the $15 million contract in 2018, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Baltimore District is the executing agent for the project. The historic ANC stonewall did not meet current antiterrorism and force protection standards. Construction began in the late fall of 2018 and physical construction was completed in September 2020.
Bernadette Osterhaus, the project manager from USACE-Baltimore District, stated that, “While physical construction of the fence has been completed, the security camera installation is still underway.”
This beneficial technological update is expected to be complete later this spring.
The location of the fence relative to the historic boundary wall varies at it winds its way
across JBM-HH. For security purposes, a gap of 10 feet is desirable so that the boundary wall cannot be used as a launch point to scale the fence.
Vihn Cayton, the JBM-HH antiterrorism officer, explained why the new perimeter fence was necessary to enhance security on
the joint base.
“Tourists visiting Arlington National Cemetery jump the stone wall separating JBM-HH and ANC not knowing it is off limits without going through proper access control points and procedures,” he said. “These wall jumpers are a big security concern for the joint base.”
In addition to the 8-foot decorative metal fence, improvements include five vehicular access gates of varying widths, which includes 8-foot wide maintenance access gates and a 5-foot wide trail that follows the path of countless runners and walkers made from permeable pavement. It also has small seating areas with benches and detailed planting along the trail and landscaping consisting of trees, shrubs and groundcovers. The fence also mitigates the possible deleterious effects of views both from the base and from the cemetery while preserving cultural and natural resources, enhancing the functionality of the base in support of ANC services and maintaining joint base infrastructure by relocating assets.
A ribbon cutting ceremony will be announced later this year.