Administrator Wheeler Celebrates Carter Carburetor Superfund Site Cleanup Completion and Future Reuse with Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater St. Louis
Transfer of site ownership to facilitate construction of golf training facility for inner city youth
St. Louis, Mo. (September 16, 2020) – At an event with the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater St. Louis, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Andrew Wheeler announced the completion of site cleanup at the Carter Carburetor Superfund Site in St. Louis, Missouri. EPA and the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater St. Louis entered into a Prospective Purchaser Agreement to transfer ownership of the former Carter Carburetor site property. Upon transfer of ownership, the club will partner with Gateway PGA Reach to develop a youth golf training facility at the site.
“I couldn’t be prouder to sign this Prospective Purchaser Agreement because it opens up a tremendous future for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater St. Louis,” said EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler. “Few imagined a polluted, former carburetor plant could be transformed into a golf training center for the youth of St. Louis. But with vision and teamwork it happened.”
“Cleaning up the Carter Carburetor site was no small task given the multiple contaminants, including PCBs, TCE, asbestos, and others,” said EPA Region 7 Administrator Jim Gulliford. “The Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater St. Louis, the community leaders and partners worked tirelessly with EPA to see this through; and, now that the site has been cleaned up the community can move forward in redeveloping the property into a tremendous community asset.”
“I am grateful to the U.S. EPA, U.S. Department of Justice, Missouri Department of Natural Resources, the City of St. Louis, Thompson Coburn LLP and the American Car and Foundry Company for coming together to promote the growth and development of children in the St. Louis region. BGCSTL relies on the generosity and support from a variety of public and private benefactors to help young people realize their potential as productive, responsible and caring citizens. Today we are witnessing the power of partnership,” said Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater St. Louis President Dr. Flint Fowler.
The Carter Carburetor site is a large former manufacturing facility, where operations over decades resulted in contamination from polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and trichloroethylene (TCE). The Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater St. Louis is located next door to the site and prior to EPA’s cleanup, the Carter Carburetor site was the subject of significant community concern regarding the site’s condition and the potential exposures to area children and residents.
In 2013, EPA entered into a $35 million settlement agreement with ACF Industries, Inc. to pave the way for the site’s cleanup, building demolition, and ultimately productive reuse. Cleanup of the site began that year with the removal of asbestos and hazardous debris from buildings on the property. Demolition and removal of the buildings began in 2015. Additional waste removal work, on-site waste treatment, and other cleanup work continued into 2017. The completed cleanup will allow the property in one of St. Louis’s oldest neighborhoods, a designated Environmental Justice area, to be redeveloped and returned to productive use for the community.
EPA and ACF Industries, Inc. completed site work in May 2020. As a part of site cleanup, ACF conducted removal actions to address dilapidated buildings onsite that were heavily contaminated with PCBs and asbestos. The site will be acquired and redeveloped by the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater St. Louis, which has long stood in the shadow of this site. In partnership with the Gateway PGA Reach organization, they will build a golf training facility for inner city youth on most of the site property. The St. Louis Land Reutilization Authority owns part of the Site (including an area where PCBs are buried and capped, which it acquired through tax default), which it hopes to develop into a pollinator park, urban prairie feature, or community garden to support the surrounding reuse.
The site was placed on the Administrator’s Emphasis List in the Fall 2019. Established in December 2017 in response to recommendations from EPA’s Superfund Task Force, the list is comprised of sites identified by Administrator Wheeler and EPA regional offices that will benefit from the Administrator’s immediate attention or action to move site cleanups forward. It serves as a mechanism to address site-specific issues that may cause delays in a site’s cleanup progress. The milestones for the Carter Carburetor Site have been achieved and the site qualifies for removal from the list.
EPA remains dedicated to addressing risks at all Superfund sites, not just those on the Administrator’s Emphasis List. The Superfund Task Force Recommendations are aimed at expediting cleanup at all Superfund sites. EPA continues to accelerate progress at Superfund sites across the country.
The mission of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater St. Louis (BGCSTL) is to inspire and enable all young people, especially those who need us most, to realize their full potential as productive, responsible and caring citizens. For over 50 years, BGCSTL has been providing after-school, teen, sports and summer programs to youth in the St. Louis area while also providing a safe place for them to learn and grow. The Clubs serve youth across St. Louis City & County including Adams Park Club, Hazelwood Elementary School Club, Herbert Hoover Club, O’Fallon Park Club, Riverview Gardens Club, Hazelwood Southeast Middle School Club and the Teen Center of Excellence. We also operate dropout prevention programs within two High Schools (Normandy and Roosevelt High School); as well as the Mentor St. Louis and St. Louis Internship programs.