Remediation is a long, expensive and tedious process and for the past 10 years, the City of Rome has watched the cleanup of the former Rome Cable site progress. While they've made significant strides, cleanup crews still have a ways to go. But as YNN's Cara Thomas tells us, the process may take even longer now that their funding has dried up.
ROME, N.Y. -- Rome Cable was once a thriving manufacturing business. Constructing cables and 'wire ropes' for the nation's energy sector and transportation system.
Rome's Community and Economic Development Director Christian Mercurio said, "Most of these processes came at a cost. These were pre EPA, pre environmental regulation days before the industrial revolution. So a lot of the processes really contributed very toxic elements to the environment."
And now decades later, Rome, along with the help of the DEC and other organizations, is cleaning up the hazardous mess. But it may take longer than they had hoped, as their funding has run out.
Peter Ouderkirk from the DEC said, "We think through various state and federal programs that we'll have some success. Nothing is guaranteed, but we certainly will try hard to get to the clean up stage."
Which city officials say is essential in order to keep Rome residents safe.
"There are chemicals and compounds in the ground that have the potential to negatively impact health of humans, pets, to get into our ground water, to get into our canal Mohawk River. These are all threatened by the presence of brownfields," said Mercurio.
Project officials say the cleanup process will make the nearly 50 acre property available for development for businesses, homes or even another industrial site.
Project officials say they're hopeful that they'll find state and federal funding to finish the remediation.
There is a large portion of the site that had no contamination at all, according to the DEC. They say if a private developer was interested in the site, they could begin using the property almost immediately.