The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers awarded a contract May 26 to upgrade and expand the currently operating Central Treatment Plant at the Bunker Hill Superfund site near Kellogg, Idaho.
The work is part of a required remedial action under the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s larger efforts to clean up toxic contamination in the basin.
AMEC Foster Wheeler Environmental & Infrastructure, Inc., of Blue Bell, Pennsylvania, was awarded a $48,140,266 million design-build contract that will upgrade and expand the currently operating Central Treatment Plant (CTP) and support facilities (such as the sludge pond) and install a new groundwater collection system to contain and control contaminated groundwater and treatment at the upgraded CTP. The contract will also provide on-going operation and maintenance of the facility throughout design, construction, commissioning and one year after.
"This is a big step forward for both the community and the environment," said Sheryl Bilbrey, director of EPA's Superfund cleanup office in Seattle. “When finished, the groundwater collection system and upgraded treatment plant will reduce the single highest source of dissolved zinc pollution to the South Fork of the Coeur d'Alene River by up to 90 percent. For Silver Valley communities, the local jobs and project-related spending will be enjoyed over the life of the project."
This project will allow the CTP to continue to treat current water inflows and meet existing discharge standards and updated more stringent standards after completion. It will also capture contaminated groundwater that is currently migrating from the site and into the South Fork of the Coeur d'Alene River. The work is part of a required remedial action under the Operable Unit 2 Records of Decision including relevant amendments and the 2012 Upper Basin Record of Decision Amendment for the Bunker Hill Mining and Metallurgical Site.
Design is expected to start shortly after award, construction is expected a year later and last approximately 18 months, and the entire project is expected to take about four years.
The existing public access trail that skirts the northern edge of the Slag Pile Area and Central Impoundment Area between Bunker Avenue and Government Gulch Road will be closed with the start of this Project and will remain closed at least through the duration of the project. Increased traffic on nearby streets can be expected during construction and will be advised by the contractor's approved Traffic Control Plan.
The Bunker Hill Mining and Metallurgical Complex Superfund Site - also known as the Coeur d'Alene Basin cleanup - is located primarily in northern Idaho. It was first added to EPA's National Priorities List of contaminated sites in 1983. At the EPA’s request, the Seattle District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, supports the EPA in managing design and construction of specific projects in the Coeur d’Alene basin.