Written by Susan Campriello
GLENHAM – Most of the roughly 60 buildings at the former Texaco Beacon Research Center will be demolished by the end of the year, according to Chevron Environmental Management Company's Mark Hendrickson.
Hendrickson told Beacon and Fishkill residents during a project open house residents Tuesday at the Slater Chemical Fire Company, in Glenham, Tuesday that asbestos removal in the former campus' buildings has begun, and demolition will commence soon.
Roughly 40 buildings will be torn down to the ground during the first phase of a demolition project that could end in 2014 with only their slabs remaining, he and Craig F. Butler, a senior project manager with engineering and design firm and project contractor Parsons, said. Then, soil and groundwater beneath the slabs will be tested for any contamination left over from when the buildings were used as an oil refinement research center, they said.
Texaco operated the research center between 1931 and 2003. Chevron acquired Texaco in 2000.
Residents Tuesday said they were pleased that Chevron and its contractors made themselves available to the public to discuss the project.
Bill Murnane, 50, said his concerns regarding air monitoring during the work had been addressed during the meeting. Steve Carne, a safety manager with demolition contractor Brandenburg, said the location of monitors would change as work moved and winds shifted.
Robert Principe, 44, said Chevron has satisfied the community's need for information, but he would have liked if a representative of the state Department of Environmental Conservation had been present Tuesday to discuss specific environmental impacts on soil and water around the buildings.
Hendrickson said earlier in the evening that monitoring wells exist on the site and no drinking water wells nearby show contamination.
Linda Stevens, 61, said she hopes Chevron will completely clean up any contamination found on the site and remain in contact with the town and its residents throughout the process.
“I just hope they continue to have the community be involved,” she said.
Ori Brachfeld, 44, agreed, saying that keeping the community informed on all plans for the site is important. The demolition worked signifies the “end of an era” when Texaco and Chevron had a local presence, he added.
Reach Susan Campriello at firstname.lastname@example.org or 845-451-4518.