FREDERICK, Md. (WUSA) -- Plans to build hundreds of homes near "Area B" at Frederick's Fort Detrick are upsetting families who believe their loved ones got cancer because of contamination in the air, water, and ground that they believe originated on the base.
Their frustration increased last week when a city planning commission approved developer-requested changes that further the approval process for the development.
"The [problem] with that is they're sitting on contamination. The contamination from Area B is still leaching, still leaking," said Susan Funk, a spokesperson for the Kristen Renee Foundation, named after a young cancer victim who lived near Ft. Detrick.
"And no way in heck would anybody build, and add more people to an area that is a superfund site. This is on the National Priorities List. It's the Superfund site of Superfund sites, one of the worst in the United States," she said.
"Hundreds of families have come to us with cancer cases," Funk added.
Nearby Dot Blank and her daughter Debra live in the home Dot first inhabited in 1959. It is directly across the street from Area B.
"I think once they start digging into the soil and moving everything it's going to affect and disturb things that are still down in the ground, that have leached into the ground, all the chemicals that have been buried over there," Debra Blank said.
Ft. Detrick was a center of development for the nation's chemical and biological warfare development for decades, using dangerous chemicals for that research.
"There are probably six families on this road that someone in the family has passed away with cancer," Blank said.
Her mother, Dot, also has cancer. Dot worked at Ft. Detrick before her retirement.
WUSA9 attempted to reach the developers of the project but they were unavailable for comment on President's Day.