Concord Naval Weapons Station was a military base built in 1942 north of Concord City, California on the Sacramento River shore where it reaches into Suisun Bay. The station served as a storage facility for the weapons of the Second World War, supplying ships at Port Chicago. During the Korean War, the Vietnam War and the Gulf War, Concord NWS continued to support war efforts, processing and shipping thousands of tons of material across the Pacific Ocean. There was also a Naval Outlying Field at the southern edge of the base during World War II. Following World War II, it ceased to be an operational airfield.
The station consists of two areas: the Inland Area (5,028 acres (2,035 ha)) within the city limits of Concord and the Tidal Area (7,630 acres (3,088 ha)). Due to changes in military operations, portions of the Inland Area started to be mothballed, and by 1999 the station had only a small contingent of military personnel and mostly included empty bunkers, empty warehouses and disused support structures. The U.S. federal government announced in 2007 that the Naval station's Inland Area would be shut down. The base's Tidal area was not expected to be closed.
Concord's 5-member City Council, acting as the federally appointed Regional Reuse Authority, is in the process of formulating an Inland Area Reuse Plan that includes residential and commercial development while reserving about two-thirds for open space and park projects. To manage this effort, city staff are assigned. The Navy must approve the Reuse Program.
The East Bay Regional Park District will receive 2,540 acres (1028 hectares) of the Inland Area to be developed as the Concord Hills Regional Park for public use. The property is expected to be formally transferred in early 2016, after which the property will be prepared for public access and recreation.
Superfund cleanup site
The Concord NWS was identified on December 16, 1994, as a Superfund cleanup site. 32 Parts of the plant were reported as polluted with heavy metals including zinc, copper, lead, cadmium and arsenic, as well as semi-volatile organic compounds (SVOC) and pesticides for organochloride. The danger to the endangered salt marsh harvest mouse and the California clapper rail is an area of great concern. Land remediation is continuing at the base with some sites removing soil and others being sealed to avoid pollutants from spreading.
The site's control was updated in 2008. The Inland Area became a Detachment of the Naval Weapons Station Seal Beach, pending ultimate closure. The Tidal Area was transferred to the U.S. Army Surface Deployment and Distribution Command (SDDC) and is now known as Military Ocean Terminal Concord (MOTCO).This facility was also used by the Diablo Squadron and Training Ship Concord of the United States Naval Sea Cadet Corps.