Updated: Friday, 04 Jan 2013, 5:51 PM EST
Published : Friday, 04 Jan 2013, 5:50 PM EST
HAMDEN, Conn. (WTNH) -- A decade ago contamination was discovered in a Hamden neighborhood causing widespread health concerns. Now after years of work and millions of dollars spent, state and local lawmakers say the long clean-up process has been completed.
Making the Newhall neighborhood a place where people feel comfortable calling it home has been a chore and an expense one at that.
After more than two and a half years of work, city leaders were celebrating the end of the massive clean-up of the Newhall neighborhood.
"For a decade this neighborhood has lived under a stigma of contamination and that stigma is now gone," said Mayor Scott Jackson of Hamden.
All this began in the year 2000 with the discovery of contaminated soil, the result of work done by Winchester Repeating Arms from the late 1800's through the 1950's.
The clean-up of more than 240 properties began late in the summer of 2010, the result of a partnership between the town, DEEP and the Olin Corporation.
"Residents were consulted during the planning stages, materials from condemned structures were re-cycled where and when possible and five thousand trees and shrubs were included in an effort to jump start that aspect of the community as well," said State Rep. Joseph Crisco.
The 70 million dollar project was not without its bumps. A number of Newhall residents told News 8 as recently as last summer about their frustrations.
But today, those who worked on this neighborhood make-over were beaming about the upgrades to driveways, fences, decks and sidewalks.
"In the process of excavating from ground surfaces down to four feet we intercepted the infrastructure, utility lines, oil tanks, removed the waste fill and had to bring in clean soil," said Ray Frignon the DEEP Project Manager.
And State Representative Peter Villano called the completion of the Newhall remediation effort among his proudest accomplishments in two decades in the General Assembly.
"We are pleased with what we see now, this entire neighborhood has been transformed. It's a beautiful suburban neighborhood," said Rep. Villano.