Precision metal fabrication at a 100-year old manufacturing facility resulted in contamination of soil and groundwater on a 15-acre urban parcel. The facility ceased operations in 2000 with the owner retaining environmental liability. Several focused surface remediation activities were completed to eliminate direct exposure to metals from foundry operations, chlorinated solvents, and lubricating oils. Groundwater investigations, demolition of manufacturing and office buildings, state approval of a conceptual site model (CSM) and environmental management plan, and adoption of Land Use Restrictions (LURs) were accomplished between 2004 and 2009. Decisions made with regulatory approval during the investigation, demolition, and subsequent environmental management positioned the property for sale. Located in a United States Department of Agriculture designated food desert, near a major university, and several miles from the nearest retail shopping center, the property was highly desirable for development, except for the environmental liabilities. Approach. The groundwater site investigation supported a CSM report that became the defining document for environmental management of the site. Results from the CSM lead to a regulatory decision for "no further remediation with long term monitoring" supported by unusual hydrogeology that effectively controlled exposure to chlorinated solvents. Facility demolition left all floor slabs and surface paving in place to protect soil and groundwater from storm water infiltration and to prevent potential exposure to contaminated soil beneath the floor slabs. LURs jointly prepared by the state agency and the owner allowed property redevelopment through the application of appropriate environmental health and safety controls to protect workers, the public, and the environment from exposure to contaminated soil and groundwater during construction and reuse. With LUR-defined options for managing environmental liabilities, the environmental risks became quantifiable enough for lenders and the city administration to support development of the property. The property was sold to a developer in 2012, who committed to environmentally responsible development, the terms of the LURs, and special purchase agreement obligations for vapor mitigation in ground level buildings. The developer received a state Brownfields agreement that afforded environmental protections and construction commenced under a state approved environmental health and safety plan. Results. Environmental liability management decisions made by the original owner positioned a severely distressed property for sale. A developer purchased the property and began construction in 2013 under a state approved environmental health and safety plan. By summer 2014, the redeveloped property will house a regional grocery store chain, a big box retailer, and several other smaller retailers and restaurants. The project represents the close-out of one property use, successful management of environmental liabilities, and redevelopment for highly beneficial reuse.
- Geosyntec Authors: Duane Graves
- Title: Environmental Management of a Former Metal Working Facility for Property Transfer and Redevelopment
- Event or Publication: 9th International Conference on Remediation of Chlorinated and Recalcitrant Compounds, 2014
- Practice Areas: Brownfields Redevelopment Planning and Design
- Date: 2014
- Location: Monterey, California