There’s a hole in the town of Saugus, Massachusetts; a very big hole.
It was dug by Aggregate Industries as a rock quarry, and now they are responsible for refilling it with something cheap, stable, and non-toxic. This is because they hope to recoup all or some of the refill costs by reselling the site for redevelopment as a vibrant new extension of the town.Refilling will require about 7 million cubic yards of fill material. This will involve approximately 250 dump truck loads on every permitted day, with the entire refill period covering some 15 years.
That’s because the Town Manager’s Aggregate Post Closure Committee is watching them like a hawk. The committee wants to ensure that the site becomes a productive, healthy part of the community once again.
Aggregate will be required to produce a master plan that should promote a complementary mix of uses, appropriate buffer zones, open space and amenities and logical vehicular and pedestrian circulation systems.
At some point the Board of Selectmen will appoint a master plan task force that will evaluate options for the long-term re-use of the quarry site.
The goal for the repurposed, renewed, and reconnected site is seen a what might be called very-mixed-use revitalization: light, clean industry (like biotech) plus the usual residential, office, and retail.
Aggregate Director of Land and Environment Lisa Young emphasized that Aggregate doesn’t want any bad material being dumped in the quarry, noting that it does neither the town nor the company any good in the long run. Aggregate wants to sell the property, and it won’t be able to do that if the ground is contaminated, Kohl added.
Brad Kohl, the head of Aggregate Industries Northeast Region, informed the Aggregate Post Closure Committee that the hope is for trucks to commence delivering material that will be used to fill the rock quarry by June 21.
Feature photo courtesy of Aggregate Industries.