New Milford mill demolition to begin soon
Published 11:32 pm, Monday, September 14, 2015
NEW MILFORD — Once considered an industrial albatross, the 320,000-square-foot former Century Brass mill should soon be a thing of the past.
Over the next few weeks, preparations will be made at the 72-acre Scovill Road property for the demolition of the mill.
Public Works Director Mike Zarba on Monday approved Trumbull-based Standard Demolition Services to begin the project. Cranes, heavy trucks and other equipment will be moved on site to take the asbestos- and PCB-contaminated structure down.
“All the years and money that has been spent on remediation of that property and it looks like we’re finally getting there,” Mayor Pat Murphy said. “We have EPA approval to proceed with Phase III of the remediation.”
The $2.7 million bid to demolish the town-owned mill was awarded in July. But final approvals were needed from the state Department of Economic and Community Development, state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection and federal Environmental Protection Agency on the planned remediation procedure before work could begin. Final EPA clearance was received last week.
A $2.5 million state bond was approved in the spring of 2014 for the project and awarded to the town by the DECD.
The mill was constructed in the 1950s by Scovill Corp. as a brass-making facility and served as a major employer in town for years. It was last owned by Century Brass.
The town took ownership of the site in 1999 in a tax foreclosure. The mill had closed in 1986. The town tried unsuccessfully for a decade to find a buyer to clean up and redevelop the property, an EPA-designated mega-brownfield’s site.
A multimillion-dollar environmental cleanup of the land was conducted by the town with federal and state loans and grants.
An environmental cleanup will be conducted during and after the building’s razing.
U.S. Rep. Elizabeth Esty, D-5, visited the site in April 2014. She lauded the mayor for bringing the state grant to the town to clean up and revitalize the property.
“We don’t want properties looking like this in our communities,” Esty said during her visit. “Cleaning them up, revitalizing them, changes the character of the community, creating a feeling of growth and vitality. You can’t measure that in dollars.”
The town’s plan for the site is to develop an industrial park and possibly move the Public Works campus from its Young’s Field Road home along the Housatonic River to seven acres on the property.
Standard Demolition Services is one of the largest demolition and environmental cleanup companies in the Northeast. Its territory consists of Connecticut, New York and Massachusetts.