Village at South Shore Brownfield

Bemidji, MN

The City of Bemidji has been developing the Village at South Shore on the south side of Lake Bemidji for mixed-use. The project area was a brownfield and had been in use for more than 100 years for various lumber, railroad, wood product, and other industrial activities. These operations created large areas of contaminated soil and groundwater from fueling, maintenance, power generation, and disposal activities.

The City of Bemidji hired WSN to assess the contamination areas with a large 150-acre Phase I Environmental Site Assessment and a series of Phase II ESAs. With our assistance and coordination with several departments and agencies, the City entered the MPCA Voluntary Investigation and Clean-up (VIC) program to complete Phase II ESAs and prepare a Development Response Action Plan (DRAP). The DRAP was a comprehensive sampling and clean-up plan for developing the area and constructing The Sanford Center on this brownfield property.

Our environmental staff also coordinated construction observation and contractor direction for the removal of 10,000 cubic yards of contaminated soil, asbestos contaminated materials, and miscellaneous hazardous waste materials. We worked closely with the Beltrami County Environmental Services department to get approval for waste handling and disposal. We also assisted the City with obtaining Dept. of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) funding through brownfield applications and reimbursement requests. Our environmental team created DRAP Implementation Reports and several petroleum remediation reports for the site, which were submitted to MPCA. The entire redevelopment cost was $40 million, $1.5 million of which were cleanup costs.

Our environmental staff completed or assisted with the following reports and work plans:

  • Phase I ESA (March 2008)
  • Phase II ESA of the Former North Central Door portion of the site (April 2008)
  • Phase II Investigation work plan for the South Shore area (June 2008)
  • DRAP for the Sanford Center development (March 2009)
  • Phase II ESA for the South Shore Beach area (May 2011)
  • Corrective Action Excavation Report Worksheet (September 2011)
  • DRAP for the proposed beach development area (October 2011)
  • DRAP Implementation Report for submittal to the MPCA VIC program (January 2012)