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Overview of the W. R. Grace Site:
planned construction, asbestos, other contaminants and floodplain issues

The W. R. Grace Site - planned construction

The "Grace Site" is basically the area near the Alewife T station, east of Alewife Brook Parkway (Routes 2, 3, and 16), to the west and north of Russell Field, and north of Rindge Avenue (including Jerry's Pond) up to Whittemore Avenue. Almost all of the site is slated for development
small map of grace site with planned construction marked
Larger version of above map

The Grace Site - asbestos

The "targeted" areas, which were more likely to contain asbestos based on their history, are sampled less than the rest of the site.
Notice all the areas where you'd expect to see sampling
- based on the overall grid (row and column) sampling pattern -
but where there were no samples.
small map of Grace site marked with locations of asbestos detection
Larger version of above map

The Grace Site - other contaminants and floodplain issues

In addition to asbestos, there's a long list of other contaminants in the soil at high enough levels to pose a health risk. Furthermore, the area that Grace wants to develop is in the floodplain of Alewife Brook. The Alewife Brook Reservation, a protected wilderness area controlled by the MDC (Metropolitan District Commission), borders Grace's property. Even if Grace provides flood storage as required by Wetlands Protection Act, the weight of the buildings will squeeze the "sponge" capacity of the floodplain area. Local flooding will likely increase in this already flood prone area.

Contact the Alewife Study Group, North Cambridge Massachusetts, by email at