Jump to main content or area navigation.

Contact Us

Superfund


   

Sites in Reuse in Colorado

Broderick Wood Products
Site photo

The Broderick Wood Products (BWP) Superfund site is located north of Denver, Colorado in an unincorporated area of Adams County. W. S. Broderick purchased the majority of what is now the site in December 1945. BWP operated a wood treating facility from 1947 to 1982 on a 64-acre triangular-shaped piece of property. As part of the wood treatment process, BWP treated power poles, fence posts, railroad ties and other wood products. Operators disposed of hazardous substances from the process in two unlined impoundments on the property. In 1984, EPA listed the site on the National Priorities List (NPL) because of contaminated ground water, soil and sludge. Broderick Investment Company (BIC), the potentially responsible party, completed the bulk of cleanup actions between 1989 and 1994. In 2003 and 2004, Union Pacific Railroad worked with EPA, the state and BIC to construct a rail line embankment across the site. As part of this project, parties made improvements to existing cleanup systems. In 2005, BIC constructed a second access road at the northern boundary to serve as the primary access point and to facilitate redevelopment of the site. In January 2007, BIC sold the vast majority of the site to Scott Contracting, which plans to sell 2-acre parcels for industrial use. Ground water treatment and monitoring at the site continue.
Updated 2/2013

For more information:

California Gulch Green Infrastructure
Site photo

Located in Lake County, Colorado, the 18-square-mile California Gulch Superfund site included the historic City of Leadville and surrounding area. Beginning in 1857, prospectors and companies mined the area extensively for lead, gold, silver, copper, zinc and manganese. Mining operations left waste rock, mine tailings and slag containing heavy metals that leached into native soils and waterways like the Arkansas River. EPA added the site to the National Priorities List (NPL) in 1983. Due to completed cleanup actions, EPA has removed much of the site from the NPL. Over the years, EPA worked with the state, the local community and the site’s potentially responsible parties to coordinate redevelopment and reuse. In 1998, EPA and the state signed agreements to provide public access to open space near the Arkansas River. State and local governments purchased more than 2,300 acres of ranch land that serve as wildlife habitat and recreational resources. Another example of redevelopment is a $1.5 million public sports complex. This includes a soccer field built in 2009 on a former zinc smelter. One of EPA’s national partners, the United States Soccer Foundation, awarded a $10,000 grant to develop initial plans for the facility. The community also incorporated reuse of remaining slag into the design of the Mineral Belt Trail, which opened in 2000. The trail is a nationally recognized recreational trail and highlights the community’s history and heritage.
Updated 2/2013

For more information:

Central City, Clear Creek
Site photo

The 400-square-mile Central City, Clear Creek Superfund site includes the former mining towns of Central City and Black Hawk, Colorado. For almost a century, vast deposits of gold and silver ores in the area supported a profitable mining industry. In the early 1900s, business in Central City and Black Hawk dramatically declined. This decline left the towns with a weakened economy and deteriorating infrastructure. The mining industry also left behind waste rock and mine tailings that contaminated the Clear Creek watershed. In 1983, EPA added the site to the National Priorities List (NPL). In partnership with the state, EPA conducted the cleanup incrementally. After Colorado amended its laws to allow gaming in the former mining towns, parties worked with casino developers to clean up portions within the two towns to support casinos, hotels and restaurants. As parties developed the former mining property for the casinos, they carried out cleanup actions. Cleanup activities included capping contaminated waste or covering it when constructing a parking lot. In 2009, the federal government awarded the site $2.16 million in American Reinvestment and Recovery Act (ARRA) funding. This funding supported the consolidation and capping of additional mine waste piles, implementation of sediment and drainage controls, and water treatment to mitigate heavy metal impacts to Clear Creek. One goal of the site’s cleanup is to protect the Clear Creek watershed. The watershed provides recreational opportunities to the community, including rafting, kayaking and fishing. Cleanup efforts continue.
Updated 2/2013

For more information:

Chemical Sales Co.

The 5-square-mile Chemical Sales Co. (CSC) Superfund site is located in a mainly light-industrial area of northeastern Denver, Colorado. Residential, commercial and municipal land uses are also located in within the site. Beginning in 1962, companies began using a warehouse located in the site area. CSC, a wholesale distributor of commercial/industrial chemicals, detergents and water leisure products began occupying the warehouse in 1976. CSC activities led to the contamination of soil on the warehouse property and area ground water. In 1989, EPA removed leaking and corroded drums from the CSC property. EPA listed the site on the National Priorities List (NPL) in 1990. Acting on behalf of EPA, the state began additional cleanup actions in 1989. Some cleanup actions continue, including the on-going treatment of ground water and soil vapors. Also, between 1986 and 1995, the public water district connected over 400 residences to the municipal water supply. CSC owned the property until 1995 when ACME Metals purchased the property. ACME Metals continues to operate on the site.
Updated 2/2013

For more information:

Denver Radium Site
Site photo

The Denver Radium Superfund site, located in Denver, Colorado, consists of over 65 properties along the South Platte River Valley. In the early 1900s, Denver ore processing facilities provided a domestic source of radium to the demand of nearby commercial entities. After the radium industry's collapse in the 1920s, radioactive residues remained in numerous locations throughout the Denver area. Parties often used these residues as fill or for paving materials. EPA listed the site on the National Priorities List (NPL) in 1983. Most of the Denver Radium properties support commercial or industrial uses, although there are a few residential properties and some open space included in the site as well. EPA and the State of Colorado designed a flexible cleanup plan that would protect human health and the environment while allowing for future redevelopment. Redevelopment has taken place at several of the cleaned-up properties. Home Depot USA, Inc., for example, selected a portion of the site for the location of a retail store. Cleanup work at the Home Depot location included covering contaminated soils with a protective soil cap designed for compatibility with the store's parking lot. EPA also addressed Home Depot's concerns regarding the company’s potential responsibility for previous contamination at the site. Their agreement ensured that the site’s soil cap would be maintained over time, protecting people from exposure to any contaminants. Other redevelopment activities at the site have included the construction of Ruby Hill Park, which provides a community swimming pool and other recreational activities.
Updated 2/2013

For more information:

Eagle Mine

The Eagle Mine Superfund site is located in Eagle County, Colorado, about 1 mile southeast of Minturn and 75 miles west of Denver. Beginning in the 1880s, the 110-acre Eagle Mine site operated as an active gold and silver mine. In 1938, Eagle Mine transitioned to support zinc mining operations, which left high levels of metals in the soil, surface water and ground water. In 1977, zinc mining operations ended. Copper and silver mining and production continued at Eagle Mine until it closed in 1984. EPA added the site to the National Priorities List (NPL) in 1986. The selected cleanup plan at the site included the excavation of contaminated soils and sediments; the containment of mine seepage and run-off; surface water, ground water, pool water and stream monitoring; and institutional controls. The potentially responsible party undertook most cleanup actions between 1989 and 2001. Following these cleanup actions, community members began using the adjacent Eagle River for recreational purposes, such as fishing, again. In 2004, a developer purchased 750 acres of site property with the intention of building a private, residential golf course community. In 2009, a new developer took over the project with less ambitious redevelopment plans. EPA and the state are currently working with the developer to make sure that the developer takes all necessary investigation and cleanup steps to prepare the property for residential redevelopment. Ground water treatment and monitoring continues.
Updated 2/2013

For more information:

Lowry Landfill Alternative Energy
Site photo

The 480-acre Lowry Landfill Superfund site is located in Aurora, Colorado. In 1964, the former owner of the land deeded the site to the City and County of Denver. The City and County of Denver operated the site as a co-disposal municipal landfill from the mid-1960s until 1984. The landfill accepted solid and liquid industrial waste and municipal solid waste. After 1984, the site continued to accept municipal solid waste until 1990. While in operation, the landfill stored solid and liquid wastes, as well as a large number of tires, in unlined trenches on the site. These practices resulted in toxic gas, contaminated ground water and soils. As a result, EPA added the site to the National Priorities List (NPL) in 1984. EPA designed a cleanup plan that focused on the containment of the contaminated materials. Cleanup activities include the construction of a ground water barrier wall, an onsite ground water treatment plant, a landfill cover and a landfill gas collection system. The landfill gas collection system directs all of the landfill gas to an enclosed flare at the northern end of the site. Following the site’s cleanup, the City of Denver, Waste Management and local utility Xcel Energy partnered to find a productive use for the site’s landfill gas. In July 2007, construction began on a landfill gas-to-energy plant at Lowry Landfill and the adjoining Denver Arapahoe Disposal site. The plant, which opened in September 2008, uses four combustion engines to convert 630 million cubic feet methane gas annually from both sites into 3.2 megawatts of electrical power. This process reduces greenhouse gases and provides electricity for about 3,000 households. When fully operational, the plant will remove about 5,000 tons of methane from the landfill annually. This is the equivalent of removing 22,000 cars from the road each year.
Updated 2/2013

For more information:

Rocky Mountain Arsenal (USARMY) Green Infrastructure
Site photo

The Rocky Mountain Arsenal (USARMY) Superfund site is located just 10 miles northeast of downtown Denver, Colorado. The once-contaminated site now provides visitors with recreational and educational opportunities and local wildlife a place to call home. The site’s successful transformation into the Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge and visitor center included an extensive cleanup to address contamination from prior military operations and pesticide manufacturing. As early as 1942, the U.S. Army used the property for the production of chemical weapons such as mustard gas, white phosphorus and napalm. Just after World War II, the Shell Chemical Company leased portions of the site for the production of pesticides. Common industrial and waste disposal practices during those years resulted in contamination of structures, soil, surface water and ground water. By the late 1950s, apparent crop damage north of the Rocky Mountain Arsenal was an indication of contaminated ground water. In 1987, EPA added the site to the National Priorities List (NPL). EPA, the U.S. Army, Shell Oil and the state began a major environmental cleanup to address the contaminated ground water, surface water, soil and buildings. In 1992, Congress passed the Refuge Act, which designated the transfer of cleaned-up site lands for use as a wildlife refuge. As cleanup continued, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service made areas of the site available for environmental education and wildlife viewing for visitors. EPA has completed five partial deletions at the site, removing cleaned portions of the site from the NPL. These five partial deletions created opportunities for local road expansions, the development of a 24-field soccer complex and music venue known as Prairie Gateway, and expansion of the wildlife refuge. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 provided about $3 million for a new visitor center at the Rocky Mountain Arsenal Wildlife Refuge. Thousands of visitors are reaping the benefits annually. Construction efforts for the new visitor center used green construction techniques, including recycled pavement and reflective roofing materials to reduce the need for air conditioning. The Rocky Mountain Arsenal Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center opened to visitors in May 2011. In addition, in 2009, EPA issued a Ready for Reuse (RfR) Determination for 294 acres along the northern edge of the site. The RfR Determination designated the surface as ready for residential use with appropriate operation and maintenance procedures in place.
Updated 2/2013

For more information:

Sand Creek Industrial

The 550-acre Sand Creek Industrial Superfund site is located in Denver and Commerce City, Colorado in a heavily industrial area. An oil refinery, a pesticide manufacturing facility, an herbicide chemical plant and a landfill contributed to site contamination. All of these facilities are currently inactive. In 1983, EPA added the site to the National Priorities List (NPL) because of soil and ground water contamination. Cleanup efforts included the demolition and removal of contaminated buildings and tanks; the excavation, incineration and disposal of contaminated soils; placement of a cap over a landfill area; installation of a landfill methane gas collection/treatment system; and treatment of other contaminated soils with other treatment technologies. After determining that these cleanup actions were successful, EPA deleted the site from the NPL in 1996. Operation and maintenance activities related to the cleanup continue. The federal government has sold properties it owns within the site to private entities. The properties included a warehouse known as the Matteson Warehouse and two parcels next to the warehouse known as the Four-Acre Parcel and the Railroad Property. The properties also included a 57-acre parcel of the 48th & Holly Landfill known as the Colorado Paint Property and a triangular parcel of the 48th & Holly Landfill known as the Colorado Eastern Property.
Updated 2/2013

For more information:

Smuggler Mountain

The 135-acre Smuggler Mountain Superfund site is located in Aspen, Colorado. Lead and silver mining took place at Smuggler Mountain from 1879 until 1920. During that time, the mine was one of the richest silver mines in the world. In 1981, EPA became aware of high lead and cadmium levels in the soil at the site resulting from decades of mining operations. Due to the public health risks at the site and to the surrounding area, EPA added Smuggler Mountain to the National Priorities List (NPL) in 1986. Following listing, EPA removed soil from around the residential area. Potentially responsible parties then performed additional cleanup actions including capping a contaminated berm with clean soil and vegetation. In 1999, EPA deleted Smuggler Mountain from the NPL. Today, the site is largely developed and contains condominiums, mobile home parks, a tennis club and many single-family residences. The successful cleanup of the site also allowed a local company to reopen the mine in an effort to extract silver. While the search for silver continues, the company has also opened the mine for tourists and is now earning income from this new activity.
Updated 2/2013

For more information:

Summitville Mine Alternative Energy
Site photo

The 1,400-acre Summitville Mine Superfund site is a former gold mine located in Rio Grande County, Colorado. The site sits at an elevation of 11,000 feet near the timberline in the San Juan Range of the Colorado Rockies. The area served as a gold mine beginning in the late 1800s. By 1984, the Summitville Consolidated Mining Corporation Inc. began open pit mining for gold, copper and silver. Mining processes contaminated the surrounding area, including Wightman Fork Creek and Terrace Reservoir. Mining operations did not cease until the company announced pending bankruptcy and informed the State of Colorado that financial support for site operations would not continue beyond December 15, 1992. On December 16, 1992, The U.S. EPA Region 8 assumed control of the site and immediately began emergency removals of contaminated sediment and soil. EPA placed the site on the National Priorities List (NPL) in 1994. Today, EPA and the state are working to reclaim and re-vegetate 1,231 acres of the site scarred by the long history of mining, and to prevent further contamination of surrounding creeks and streams. The community has remained involved in the cleanup by hiring an independent technical advisor to review cleanup issues and help keep the community informed. During 2008, EPA Region 8 and the state made significant progress toward the installation of a hydroelectric power system at the site, completing construction of the inlet structure. In 2010, EPA Region 8 and the state built the powerhouse and installed the 35-kilowatt turbine. The plant became operational in 2011. Energy produced by the plant feeds back into the grid, offsetting the costs of operating the site remedy. In 2009, the site received $17 million in American Reinvestment and Recovery Act (ARRA) funds to construct the Summitville water treatment plant. Completed in 2011, the new water treatment plant removes high metals concentrations from acid mine drainage originating at the site. Cleanup is ongoing to permanently stabilize the site and reverse the adverse effects of mining, while restoring the ecosystem and protecting farmlands.
Updated 2/2013

For more information:

Uravan Uranium Project (Union Carbide Corp.)

The approximately 700-acre Uravan Uranium Project (Union Carbide Corp.) Superfund site is located in Uravan, Colorado. The site began operations as a radium-recovery plant in 1912. From the 1940s until 1984, the plant operated as a uranium and vanadium processing facility. Site activities left a large amount of waste on the site and caused the contamination of soil and ground water. EPA placed the site, which included the town of Uravan, on the National Priorities List (NPL) in 1986. The cleanup plan for the site involved moving more than 3 million cubic yards of mill wastes and contaminated materials located along the San Miguel River to secure repositories on Club Mesa. The plan also included the removal and cleanup of materials and contaminated soil from about 400 acres. As part of the cleanup, remedial crews dismantled and disposed of on-site mills and other structures, and conducted additional cleanup at the former town of Uravan. Successful cleanup of the site reached completion in 2008. Recreational activities surrounding the site include, but are not limited to, hunting, fishing, camping and rafting. Limited mine reclamation and exploration drilling activities take place in the area surrounding the site. Land use on the site is mostly fall and winter grazing of beef cattle. In the future, the potentially responsible party expects to transfer parts of the site to the Department of Energy (DOE) Legacy Management program. The DOE program will conduct long-term maintenance and surveillance of the repositories. Site stakeholders expect that the potentially responsible party will transfer other portions of the site to the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and Montrose County.
Updated 2/2013

For more information: