Waste Site Cleanup & Reuse in New England
Success in EPA Conducted Targeted Brownfields
(August 14, 2002)
In February of 1999, the City of Lewiston was selected to receive a Targeted Brownfields Assessment from EPA New England. A Targeted Brownfields Assessment is a "grant of services" from EPA where EPA contractors perform site assessment activities on behalf of municipality or non-profit in order to determine what, if any contamination exists at a site and what cleanup is needed to support the intended redevelopment. These site assessments cost between $50,000 and $100,000, depending on site size and scope of work.
The City's Lewiston and Auburn Railroad Company (a quasi-municipal agency) currently has a 999-year lease on the property located along the Androscoggin River on Water Street in Lewiston. The site has been developed since the early 1800's. Various light industrial and commercial businesses have occupied the property during its long history of development. The City's goal was to expand the borders of an adjacent park public park onto the 1.3 acre site.
During late 1999 and early 2000, EPA New England and its contractor worked with the City's Development Department and the Maine Department of Environmental Protection on developing and implementing the site assessment. The results of the assessment indicated that the site was not contaminated so as to precluded development of the site into a public park. It was later determined that cleanup was not required prior to redevelopment.
Railroad Park is an integral part of the city's overall downtown revitalization plan which includes the rehabilitation of the Bates Mill Complex. The Park now hosts several public events every year including the annual Great Falls Balloon Festival. Excellent photos of Railroad Park are available at http://ci.lewiston.me.us/photos/index.htm . Simply click on the "Railroad Park" title on the left margin.