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Pacific Southwest, Region 9

Serving: Arizona, California, Hawaii, Nevada, Pacific Islands, Tribal Nations

ADEQ UST Program

Arizona’s Underground Storage Tank Removal and Cleanup Progress

ust being excavated

More than 200 miles of the original Route 66 runs through the northern part of Arizona. Along this stretch of highway, approximately 350 properties have reported contamination from USTs. In 2004, almost 100 properties along the Route 66 corridor had UST-related contamination remaining onsite. By 2010, this number had been reduced by more than 40 percent.

After reviewing all of the potential candidates for the Initiative, the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) Underground Storage Tank Program Exiting EPA (disclaimer) focused special attention on Holbrook and Winslow where a high clay content makes cleanup difficult. ADEQ partnered with property owners, consultants and community representatives to expedite cleanup. Additionally, ADEQ assigned project case managers to each municipality or town, and designated a community liaison based in St. Johns, Arizona.

By 2010, work has been completed on more than 60 percent of the properties with leaking USTs in the Winslow and Holbrook area.

Also during this period, ADEQ managed UST removals and cleanups at more than 40 additional sites along Arizona’s stretch of Route 66, including the removal of numerous “orphan” tanks under the County and Municipal Tank Closure Program(CMTCP).

"ADEQ has done an excellent job of cleaning up contaminated properties along Route 66. The EPA is proud to join ADEQ to take the project even further. We want to explore ways to help support restoration and job creation along this historic route."

- Jeff Scott, Director,
Waste Management Division,
EPA Pacific Southwest Regional Office

Case Study: Standin’ on the Corner Park – Winslow, Arizona
standin' on a corner in winslow,az

As part of Winslow’s Renaissance Downtown Redevelopment, the Standin’ on the Corner Park Exiting EPA (disclaimer) was created to attract tourists who come to take their photo “standin’ on a corner in Winslow Arizona” as the Eagles sang in their hit song “Take it Easy.”

The park includes an impressive mural painted on the wall of the adjacent building, which is a former J.C. Penney department store. The park is a key tourist attraction for travelers following the Route, but it was closed when a fire severely damaged and destabilized the wall of the adjacent building. With the mural threatening to topple over on visitors, the city was forced to fence-off the park. The restricted access to the park caused a significant loss in revenue for businesses in downtown Winslow. Using EPA funding, ADEQ assisted the city with the evaluation and cleanup of environmental contamination that resulted from the fire. This project provides a good example of city, state and federal partners working together to restore economic prosperity and revitalize a downtown area.

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