A series of boarded-up former social housing buildings in Carleton Place is now up for sale. The units on Edwards Drive near the intersection of Townline Road East and Joseph Street sit on a parcel of land that was the subject of prolonged litigation that was recently settled, according to Lanark County’s Director of Social Services, Emily Hollington. The action, initiated by the county, (the property’s owner) was a result of soil contamination from a nearby decommissioned retail fuel station (the site currently occupied by a Mac’s Milk outlet). The underground fuel tanks were removed in 1990 and after monitoring the site, contamination was discovered. In 2006 the property owner began ground-water remediation.
In 2015 Lanark County’s housing corporation determined the houses had reached the end of their useful life and the site would be redeveloped. As tenants moved from their homes the units remained vacant. In 2016 the county discovered the presence of petroleum hydrocarbons on the site. Indoor air quality tests were completed.
The county launched a court action against the fuel station’s owners to seek compensation for damages and to order the stop of any further migration of contaminants onto their property.
The indoor air monitoring of the county’s homes as well as several private residences in the neighbourhood showed no risk to occupants according to the Ontario Ministry of the Environment in 2018. In a statement to Hometown News, Hollington wrote that “Lanark County Housing Corporation (LCHC) has reached a settlement with the defendants to its action concerning the Joseph Edward Pattie site. The property has been listed for sale in cooperation with Circle K. The details of the settlement are confidential and as result will not be shared. LCHC is committed to reinvesting any proceeds it may receive from the settlement and sale into the development of new community housing in Lanark County.”
Circle K is the owner of the Mac’s Milk site.