The City of Guelph and the Ministry of Environment, Conservation and Parks (MECP) are aware of the history of industrial activity at 200 Beverley Street—the former International Malleable Iron Company (IMICo) site. We’ve already performed several studies and cleanup activities as required by the MECP since we became the property owner in 1997.
Environmental monitoring and management
We’ve been monitoring and managing the property according to the MECP Director’s Order at an annual cost of about $40,000 to $50,000 a year.
In some parts of the site, the soil and/or groundwater contain chemicals typically found in gasoline or paint—petroleum hydrocarbons (PHCs), volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and metal(s).
We regularly conduct groundwater monitoring. All City drinking water wells are at least two kilometres away from this site and monitoring and tests confirm that no contamination has reached any of our source water supplies. Guelph’s drinking water is safe, and regular testing shows our tap water meets or does better than the Ontario drinking water standards.
Since the completion of the 2014 environmental site assessment and preliminary remedial action plan, the City, in consultation with the MECP, completed further work to determine the depth and degree of VOC impacts in groundwater at the northeast corner of the site. The investigation included putting in a monitoring well that reaches 33.32 meters underground. Results from this work will help the City with next steps as we move toward potential redevelopment.
In 2017, the City retained CH2M, now Jacob, to complete environmental site assessments in support of the potential redevelopment of the site from industrial to residential land use purposes. The original work was completed in 2019 and the City filed a pre-submission with the MECP. The City continues to work with Jacob to complete additional site assessment work based on MECP comments on the pre-submission, including soil investigation work and groundwater sampling.
- Phase one environmental site assessment (completed in 2017)
- Phase two environmental site assessment (completed in 2018-2019)
- Pre-submission (filed with MECP in 2019)
- Supplemental phase two environmental site assessment (ongoing based on pre-submission comments)
- Draft remedial action plan (ongoing)
- Limited remediation and risk assessment (expected completion in 2020)
- Record of Site Condition filing with the MECP (expected by end of 2021)
The MECP must be satisfied with the condition of the site before any construction can occur. Visit the Ministry’s website to learn more about MECP rules for cleaning up and redeveloping brownfield properties.
For more information check out the reports posted online. New reports will be posted as they become available.
Challenging, but not impossible
In addition to environmental studies and monitoring, the City is exploring options to market the property to potential investors – developers who understand the benefits of renewing brownfield properties like this one.
The cost of preparing the property for redevelopment is estimated between $3 million and $4.5 million. Negotiating a deal will not be simple or straightforward, and the redevelopment process is technical and complex.
Once the City chooses a quality proponent, explores potential uses and negotiates the land sale, the City will consider community input, review and approve site plans and issue building permits.