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To the stakeholders in the Quantum Frederick and QLoop Projects:   

Welcome to our new monthly update series for our Quantum Frederick Campus and QLoop Projects (“Projects”).  This update provides stakeholders and the community with timely information about the progress of these Projects.  Here we have the opportunity to answer your questions about the Projects, such as status, timing, inspection reports, and news coverage, so you have a full understanding of what’s happening, the proper context, and in some cases,  clarification of misunderstandings. Questions should be sent to QuantumFrederick@QL.Email. Feel free to unsubscribe or ask us to add subscribers who would like to be informed of future updates.

Current Update on the Projects


  • QLoop construction is approximately 46% complete, not including the Quantum Frederick Campus. 
  • The Monocacy River Crossing is 97% Complete. The bore and casing pull have been completed. All that remains is the 34 conduit pull.
  • The two Potomac River Crossings were completed in May 2023.

Quantum Frederick:

  • After approximately one year of engineering designs and construction approaches that best balance the varied feedback of state, county, neighbors, and concerned citizen stakeholders regarding ground water management and wetlands / waterway crossings, we are pleased with the results we’ve accomplished.  The efforts and investments made utilize the best available technologies that deliver the least environmental impact. This approach has enabled all permitting to proceed and has resulted in the approval of all necessary MDE Environmental Management Plans (EMPs).
  • Now that we have a clear roadmap to the full commencement of all work, we have generated a new construction schedule and are confident that we can meet or exceed these milestones.


Response to QLoop permit violations and recent inspection reports:

Regrettably, in recent months we have received notices of permit violations from Frederick County and MDE for our QLoop project. Some of these issues were within the control and responsibility of our contractors, some were not. Nonetheless, it has become apparent to us that more oversight was needed for the construction of QLoop. To that end, we have added another layer of oversight. We are continuously assessing the project team to ensure we have the best contractors in place.

For some violations, there is no excuse and we are committed to doing better and keeping a tighter watch over those we have entrusted to perform the work. However, it’s important to understand that due to the unique nature and location of certain segments of the QLoop Project, there may be instances where violations are unavoidable or that will remain open until environmental restoration is approved by MDE. For example:

  • In a prior MDE Compliance Evaluation Report, we were cited for not restoring and stabilizing fractures to the ground; however, we were actually pending MDE approval of our restoration plan prior to commencing these restorative activities. During this time, containment and protective measures were expeditiously established, monitored, and maintained in coordination and agreement with MDE.
  • Natural fractures in the bedrock near our horizontal drilling sites caused inadvertent releases of “drilling fluid” (otherwise known as “IRs”), which can happen when we drill through these fractures. These are technically permit violations. The drilling fluid formula is approved by MDE, and is over 99% water with a very small amount of bentonite clay, an inert clay commonly used for drilling operations. When we originally applied for permits, in anticipation of IRs, we submitted a detailed contingency plan that was approved by MDE. All Maryland regulatory agencies are aware that due to the type of geology in this region, it’s very difficult to avoid IRs.
  • For an area near the Monocacy, after multiple IRs had occurred, we had left in place precautionary containment methods (such as pumps near a creek, several small sandbag dams, and hoses) to immediately isolate and contain IRs if they reoccur in known locations. We installed these containment measures to protect property, the impacted creek, and the Monocacy River and its important ecosystem. These protective measures are, nonetheless, documented as Permit violations and have since been referenced by MDE as an “ongoing violation.” Both MDE and QL agreed on the containment measures that remain in place to address any possible future IRs at the construction site. Now that we have concluded the horizontal drilling for QLoop at the Monocacy, the containment measures will be removed and the site will be restored based on an approved plan by MDE. Once the site is fully restored to MDE’s guidelines, the “ongoing violation” will be lifted from future reporting.
  • During an inspection of the Monocacy IR location, the MDE inspectors stated:
    • MDE Compliance noted that there were precautionary containment measures in place and agreed during the May 30th meeting to leave the measures in place until further guidance is received. Since this was a location where prior inadvertent returns have occurred, MDE Compliance understood the rationale for this measure and asked QL to submit the details of what we would like to leave in place, so that they can review internally and come back with permission, proposed modifications or instructions for us to remove.

It’s also important to note that MDE reports all violations the same, whether small or large, minor or major. Our standard practice is to self-report and perform self-directed onsite inspections to detect any area of non-compliance. Whether it’s independent onsite inspectors, environmental consultants walking the site, or drones monitoring hard-to-reach areas within our construction easements, we will continue to exhaust all means and resources to promptly identify, report, and mitigate compliance issues as soon as they arise.

Addressing General Media Coverage and Sentiment

We are finding that some news reporting outlets may not be providing balanced, objective reports on the project. QL has continuously been subject to misrepresentation with various one-sided articles and storylines that do not contain the whole truth, whether purposeful or not. This is why we’re working to create a better system that provides transparency directly from us to you. Again, please feel free to reach out to us if you hear something of concern in the media or from a neighbor. You can send an email to QuantumFrederick@QL.Email.

Best regards, 

Quantum Frederick and QLoop Management Team 

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