Monday, May 12, 2014

Officials Meet To Discuss Hamilton Garden Drilling

BRIEF MEETING YIELDS GOOD INFORMATION
Monday afternoon a group of city staffers, consultants and representatives of state and local agencies met to discuss and answer questions about the planned drilling at the Hamilton Community Garden on Wednesday of this week. The garden will be closed on that date.

ZERO COMMUNITY CONCERN, APPARENTLY
Maintenance Services Manager Bruce Hartley led the discussion and was joined by Transportation Services Manager Raja Sethuraman (acting on behalf of Public Services Director Ernesto Munoz; Minoo Ashabi, the project manager on this project and Gary Armstrong, Director of Development Services.  Also attending were Andy Martinez from the Orange County Health Care Agency, Rose Scott of the State Water Resources Control Board, Kelly Brown representing environmental consulting firm Stantec and Eric Nelson representing the current owners of the adjacent property that is going to be developed.  Not a single member of the public - except me - showed up.  None of the 41 plot-holders at the Hamilton Community Garden came to the meeting.
 TEST HOLES
The short version of events is that there is that on Wednesday three holes will be drilled at the Hamilton Garden, none of which will interfere with any of the plots.  This activity will take place on one day.  The holes will be 1.5 feet, 3 feet and approximately 19-20 feet (to reach the water table)

MAGNITUDE OF THE CONTAMINATION
The objective is to try to determine that a known plume of contamination - gasoline and diesel oil - from nearby properties has migrated to beneath the garden location, and to see if there is any reason for the gardeners to be concerned about their plants absorbing the contaminants.

3-5 WEEKS FOR RESULTS
According to the consultants, it will take 3-5 weeks before the results of the sampling is available, and that a report will be presented to the city at that time - according to Brown, in the easiest-to-understand terms possible.

MITIGATION WOULD CONTINUE
Even if these tests determine there is a major problem the development next door can proceed and mitigation measures to remove vapor and fluid contamination will continue, if necessary.

CALLED A MEETING - NOBODY SHOWED UP!
I was surprised that not a single person from the garden - or the Del Mar garden, for that matter - showed up for this meeting.

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