The New Lincoln Elementary School was demolished without fanfare this summer after years of standing vandalized and vacant in Lackawanna’s 1st Ward. Officials now face a soil remediation project with a price tag approaching $400,000. “Asbestos was removed from the building before demolition, but petroleum used for heating the building had leaked from tanks into the soil,” said Drew Shapiro, Lackawanna director of development. “The property is zoned residential and has to be cleaned up.”
“We didn’t have enough money to remediate the soil,” he said. Remediation costs were pegged as $394,200 in Mayor Geoffrey Szymanski’s letter Wednesday to the City Council. In the letter, Szymanski suggested the city apply for a Community Development Block Grant from Erie County to defray the remediation cost. “The problem is the way the city was run when the steel plant was rolling,” Szymanski said. “The school was built in the ’20s. Back then there was no environmental agency, and whatever poured out of those stacks eventually landed on the ground. Here we are once again paying for our forefathers’ actions.”
“This hit us like a ton of bricks,” the development director said.
Source – The Buffalo News
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