On Tuesday, City Manager Ron Marsh met with representatives from Kansas Gas to hold a pre-construction meeting for the Manufactured Gas Plant remedial project, located at the corner of Second Street and Mulberry Street.
According to Marsh, the company plans to spend a week doing baseline air monitoring before they will start the excavation process. The company created a tentative schedule of seven months before the project will be completed, which takes into consideration holidays and any weather that may halt construction. Also, they will need to remove trees located on the east side of the lot, but they hope to replant them once the construction is completed.
The city assisted with rerouting vehicles and truck traffic to avoid the area and hopefully avoid as many residential streets as possible.
“If there’s anything happening after hours, weekends, holidays, if locals notice something please remember to call the hotline,” Marsh said.
Residents can ask or give comments about the project by calling 785-380-2811 or emailing them to info@abilene-KGS.com.
The remediation project started when the Kansas Department of Health and Environment assessed Kansas’ manufactured gas plant locations to see if contamination is possible in the future. Finding out there’s a possibility, KDHE turned to companies like Kansas Gas Services to help with the removal process of the old tanks.
For Abilene, the project focuses on removing 11 feet of tank found underneath the surface and then treating the area before turning it into a gravel parking lot.
Kansas Gas Service PR Manager Dawn Tripp told the Abilene Reflector-Chronicle in September: “Our contractors (Burns & McDonnel) will use construction equipment and may occasionally close streets around the property. It may at times be noisy and may cause a tar-like smell. However, we are working hard to minimize this work’s impact on the surrounding neighborhood and will work to make the project as safe as possible.”
“We are committed to providing safe, clean and reliable natural gas service to our customers and all the communities that we serve,” Tripp added. “As a responsible corporate citizen, we’re working to help maintain a healthy environment for our communities and the residents who live in service territories. So, we do want to express our openness to hearing from the residents in Abilene.”