This is an archived article. For the latest news, go to the Advance Homepage.
For more archives, go to the Advance Archive/Search Page

Final landfill closure plans
now forwarded to DEP
July 27, 1998

UConn officials have submitted to the Department of Environmental Protection final closure plans for a long-dormant landfill located in North Campus, and are on track to cap the landfill by the end of October, University and DEP officials announced last week.

Additionally, test results from 80 residential wells and three streams in the vicinity of the landfill have been analyzed and they do not indicate the presence of any leachate seepage in local drinking water wells, health officials said. Only one well revealed treaces of contamination that may have been caused by the landfill, they said. The tests, conducted by the Eastern Highlands Health District, and other tests conducted since June - when UConn and DEP signed a consent decree to guide the closure and testing plans - will be shared with community members during a public meeting July 29 at 7:30 p.m. in Mansfield Town Hall.

"We welcome the health district's test results, and remain absolutely committed to identifying and, if necessary, rectifying, any environmental problems associated with the landfill," Chancellor Mark Emmert said. "We will continue moving aggressively toward capping the landfill in a manner consistent with the guidelines established by the DEP, and which we have asked the federal Environmental Protection Agency to review. The University will continue to work proactively with town officials and residents toward bringing these issues to conclusion."

The landfill has been inactive since 1989, and plans for its formal closure have been included in the scope of projects planned for the area, including Connecticut Technology Park and, more recently, a football stadium. Neither project, however, came to fruition.

Chemical pits adjacent to the landfill, used in the 1960s, were properly remediated and closed in compliance with the 1982 consent order. Also, the University's water lines were extended to numerous homes located near the landfill, and the residents were hooked into the University's water system. Test borings were also made at that time, and continuous monitoring of groundwater has been ongoing.

"DEP has reported that these tests have, to date, revealed no potential health hazards," Emmert said.

The University has retained the firm of Haley & Aldrich to prepare a closure plan and conduct a detailed hydrogeological survey to determine the impact, if any, that the landfill and former chemical pits may have on soil, ground water, and surface water.

Richard Veilleux