BETA is providing the City of Chicopee’s Office of Community Development with engineering and environmental consulting support for the environmental and response actions related to the former Uniroyal and Facemate properties. The project site consists of more than 70 acres adjacent to the Chicopee River that has been vacant since 2003. This is one of the projects targeted by MassDEP for cleanup and future redevelopment under the Lt. Governor’s Brownfield Support Team (BST) initiative. It has also received funding from MassDevelopment ($4 Million), EPA ($800,000) and the HUD Section 8 Community Development Block Grant Program ($10 Million).
The site included numerous areas of environmental concerns, including partially collapsed abandoned buildings, former PCB containing equipment, existing underground storage tanks (USTs), abandoned railroad rails lines, and various underground structures (i.e. former building foundations, canals, penstocks, and tail races that were filled circa 1950).
BETA conducted an initial environmental review that involved extensive research of historic uses of the property and prepared an ASTM Phase I ESA Report documenting existing site conditions and areas of concern. A supplemental subsurface investigation program was subsequently conducted to help assess “suspect” areas identified during the Phase I. Key elements of the cleanup include on-site consolidation of asbestos and PCB-impacted debris (with a Self Implementing Plan under TSCA regulations, and a RAM Plan under MassDEP Waste Site Cleanup regulations), and a Special Waste Determination under MassDEP’s Solid Waste regulations.
Site activities have also included structural analysis of existing buildings, asbestos, and hazardous materials inspection, removal of abandoned USTs, cleanup of RCRA hazardous wastes, collection of groundwater and soil samples, monitoring well installation and sampling, soil borings, and test pitting. The Iron Horse Preservation Society (IHPS) was also involved, at no cost to the city, to remove existing railroad ties and rails on most of the subject property. The locations of site activities have been georeferenced using GPS in order to create a site plan containing details on all information collected on the property. This cohesive plan has been compiled to help developers determine possible uses of the property based on remaining environmental Site conditions.