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Waste Site Cleanup & Reuse in New England

ActionAir Systems

Success in EPA Conducted Targeted Brownfields Assessments
Town of Manchester, CT


Before Construction

131 Adams Street, Before.

After Construction

131 Adams Street, After.
ActionAir Systems

An EPA-Conducted Targeted Brownfields Assessment contributed to the successful redevelopment of a property abandoned for nearly 13 years in the Town of Manchester, CT. In 1997, EPA New England conducted a $50,000 assessment of the property at 131 Adams Street, also known as the former Buckland Manufacturing Company site. The redevelopment of the property kept ActionAir Systems, a growing local business employing approximately 40 people, in the Town of Manchester. The project put an abandoned property and building back into use providing revenue for the town and diminished negative environmental impacts on public health.

Buckland Manufacturing Company was a machinist and metal working shop which made components used by the aircraft industry. Common activities associated with this type of operation include machining, painting, and degreasing. No municipal taxes were paid on the property since 1986 and the site remained out of use from 1988 to 2001. The 1.63 acre site is in an industrial zone and an aquifer area which serves the town's municipal water supply. There was a 17,534 square foot building on the site which was abandoned in poor condition.

Under the Targeted Brownfields Assessment, EPA hired consultants to conduct environmental assessments. The findings were critically important to inform prospective buyers about the condition of the property and the estimated cost of remediation. Due to a lack of information on the extent of contamination on site due to solvent spills and failing septic systems and fear of the legal liabilities of ownership, the town had not pursued a tax sale or foreclosure action, the bank avoided foreclosure, and private parties had not wanted to spend the money for the necessary environmental site assessment. The site subsequently remained abandoned for nearly 13 years.

In April 1998, the Targeted Brownfields Assessment was completed. The assessment revealed soil contamination of metals, petroleum hydrocarbons, and solid waste. The assessment also included recommendations for cleanup, further work, and the cost to implement the recommendations, estimated to be $110,000. The Town of Manchester worked closely with the EPA New England Brownfields Team and the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection's Urban Site Remediation staff.

The Town sold the tax liens to ActionAir Systems for $50,000. They then foreclosed on the site, cleaned the property to CT DEP commercial cleanup standards at a cost of under $80,000, and put it back into productive use. ActionAir Systems designs, installs, and services HVAC systems. Doors opened at the new site in March 2001.

Program Description: 131 Adams Street
Manchester CT web site Click icon for EPA disclaimer.

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