GREENWICH, Conn. Greenwich High seniors will be able to park their cars at the school once again as of Monday thanks to efforts to clean up contaminated soil , the district announced Wednesday evening.
All the work on the schools West Lot is expected to be completed this week, weather permitting. The school expects the lot to be open for public use, including senior parking, beginning Monday.
As excavation began in early summer on parking lots for the auditorium project, known as MISA, workers discovered soil that was darker than dirt found earlier in July while excavating the West Lot at the school, prompting immediate environmental testing. All work was stopped, and the area covered and closed off.
Testing in surrounding areas revealed low levels of lead, arsenic, barium, volatile organic compounds or VOCs, polychlorinated biphenyl or PCBs, and petroleum hydrocarbons. Athletic fields were closed, prompting teams to practice on middle school and elementary school fields. Soon after, the school suspended senior parking.
Over the past six weeks, all soil piles have been removed in the West Parking Lot, and the asphalt is being cleaned. The town is implementing interim remediation measures, approved by state environmental agencies to allow access to the full lot. The measures include installing a fence around the West Lot to limit access to contaminated soil between the lot and Fields 2, 3 and 4.
The town Department of Public Works is overseeing remediation measures planned and long-term environmental studies for the project, according to the school district. The department will be conducting an environmental study of the soil beginning in October.
For now, the department is focusing on removing soil, fencing off areas of contamination and getting the fields open again.
Other remediation efforts are expected to begin this week for Turf Fields 6 and 7, which will include removing shallow soil and disposing of the soil properly. These fields are expected to open for practice and games by late October.
On Turf Fields 3 and 4, the district plans to begin installing fences this week. It is still working on plans to submit for state approval to remediate soil contamination in these areas. However, athletes are expected to be able to practice on the fields beginning Oct. 17.
On Grass Field 2, the district plans to remove soil from a small area to allow for fall field maintenance to be completed before winter starts. The district is still waiting for approval from the state.
The district is submitting a request to the state to open Field 5, a grass field where no PCBs were found in the soil.
You can watch the full footage from the schools public forum environmental earlier this month here.
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