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EPA Proposes Deleting the Army Materials Technology Laboratory Superfund Site from Superfund List

Release Date: 09/25/2006
Contact Information: Dave Deegan (617) 918-1017

(Boston, Mass. – September 25, 2006) – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency proposed that the Army Materials Technology Laboratory Superfund Site, located in Watertown, MA, be deleted from the National Priorities List (NPL).

EPA determined that all appropriate response actions under Superfund law have been completed and are protective of human health and the environment. The Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection concurred with this determination on September 8, 2006. Institutional control inspections and five-year reviews will continue to occur and this deletion does not preclude future Superfund actions.

The public is invited to provide comment on the proposed deletion. The thirty day public comment period commenced September 22, 2006 and ends October 23, 2006. Written comments should be addressed to:

Kymberlee Keckler
Remedial Project Manager
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
One Congress Street, Suite 1100 (HBT)
Boston, MA 02114

Oral comments will also be accepted through this date and should be directed to Kymberlee Keckler at 617-918-1385 or toll free at 1-888-372-7341, ext. 81385

If no adverse comments are received within this period, the deletion of the site from the Superfund program will become effective November 21, 2006.

More information about the proposed deletion can be found on-line at:

http://www.epa.gov/fedrgstr/EPA-WASTE/2006/September/Day-22/f7966.htm

http://www.epa.gov/fedrgstr/EPA-WASTE/2006/September/Day-22/f7965.htm

Additionally, a local information repository about the site is located at:

Watertown Free Library
123 Main Street
Watertown, MA 02472
617-972-6431
Hours: Mon.-Thurs. 9 am - 9 pm;
Fri. & Sat. 9 am - 5 pm; Sun. 1 pm - 5 pm

The Site was originally part of a 131-acre military facility, known as the “Watertown Arsenal,” which was built in 1816 for the production and research of weapons and other military materials. Following World War II, the Watertown Arsenal primarily focused on research and technology development. In August of 1968, 55 acres of the Watertown Arsenal were sold to the Town of Watertown. This area was redeveloped in the mid-1970s as the Arsenal Mall, Arsenal Park, and apartment buildings. In late 1988, Congress recommended the closure of the Watertown Arsenal, which took place on September 29, 1995.

The 48 acre-site was placed on the EPA NPL in May 1994. EPA determined in July 1998 that the soil and groundwater cleanup was completed on approximately 36.6 acres. On November 22, 1999, these 36.6 acres were removed from the NPL in an administrative process called “partial deletion.” In September 2005, EPA determined that the remainder of the site, consisting of a two-mile stretch of the Charles River adjacent to the former Arsenal, met cleanup standards.

The entire Site is currently in use. A large part is owned by Harvard University and accommodates a variety of office and commercial uses, as well as a regional arts center. The Town owns and operates the historic Commander’s Mansion as a community activities center. Other uses include a recreational park and yacht club.

More site information can be found at www.epa.gov/region1/superfund/sites/amtl.