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Wayne Post
  • Village land targeted for cleanup

  • State environmental officials are planning to clean up a polluted site in the village where a coal gas plant once stood.

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  • State environmental officials are planning to clean up a polluted site in the village where a coal gas plant once stood.
    Residents can attend a public meeting Thursday at 7 p.m. to discuss the proposed remediation of the former MGP site at 125 N. Main St. near the intersection with Westshore Boulevard. The site includes some property now part of the Quality Inn’s parking lot.
    The meeting will be held in the Newark Village Court, 100 E. Miller St. Residents are encouraged to discuss the proposed cleanup at the meeting and provide comments, said state Department of Environmental Conservation Project Manager Bernard Franklin.
    The land is owned by New York State Electric and Gas, and was found to have tar and an oil-like material in the soil, largely near the former MGP structures. The DEC said the soil has other contaminants as well that exceed acceptable limits by the state Department of Environmental Conservation. The DEC developed a cleanup plan after reviewing the site investigation and evaluating the cleanup options submitted by NYSEG under the state Superfund Program.
    The Superfund Program identifies suspected inactive hazardous waste disposal sites and those that pose a significant threat to public health and/or the environment. The DEC attempts to identify parties responsible for site contamination, and if possible requires them to pay for cleanup costs before state funds are used. NYSEG is the responsible party for remediation costs, Franklin said. A cost estimate on the project was not available as of press time.
    The property was used by Newark MGP as a coal gas plant in the early 1900s. Formerly Empire Gas and Electric, NYSEG inherited the plant, and in 1933 switched from coal gas to natural gas. No energy is produced at the site now.
    Besides the Quality Inn property, a portion of the site extends underneath West Shore Boulevard. NYSEG is proposing to excavate a maximum of 600 truckloads of soil from the area, said Franklin. The removed soil will be treated on-site before being taken to a permitted waste facility.
    A remedial design phase will begin once the proposed remedy is approved and final plan is issued. Design documents including plans and specifications will be developed during this phase.
    The DEC does not expect the construction of the proposed remedy to adversely affect the operation of the Quality Inn Hotel at the site. Monitoring programs will be in-place to ensure the health and safety of the on-site residents and the surrounding community. A traffic plan will also be developed and implemented during the construction of the remedy to minimize the impact of traffic as a result of the construction on the community.
    The estimated cost to implement the remedy is approximately $5 million, however, the actual cost will be determined during the design phase of the remedy after an initial pre-design investigation is complete.
    Page 2 of 2 - It will take about one year from the time the final remedy is issued to complete the design. The construction will begin after then but a firm date is not yet established. The entire process — from cleanup to monitoring — could take 10 years, he said.
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