Burton’s plan to bring Higher Ground to the company’s Burlington campus has met with a number of challenges. The latest is “historical contamination” at the site on 152 Industrial Avenue.
The Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation has expressed concerns about the facility, which was built in 1962. The building was previously used by General Dynamics Armaments Systems, a defense contractor that documented releases of contaminants on the property in past records that were shared with the state.
The use of the building is set to change from an industrial to a commercial site as a part of Higher Ground’s relocation.
Burton is adamant that there are no environmental issues at the site, but neighbors are skeptical and worry that construction could disrupt toxic waste and contaminate the well water that the Queen City Park neighborhood uses for drinking.
“The well is within striking distance of the facility which may need some environmental cleanup work done to protect the neighbors’ well,” said Laurie Smith, a resident of Queen City Park.