A Development Application for the demolition of the main plant and associated buildings was lodged with LMCC on 24 November 2004 and placed on public exhibition during January 2005.
The Application was approved by Council in March 2005.
Careful de-dusting and asbestos removal of the buildings in preparation for demolition began in December 2004. Most of the structures and equipment were recycled in order to minimise waste.
Moltoni Adams was appointed to demolish the main plant and other buildings, commencing substantial demolition activities in June 2005 following the receipt of relevant approvals.
Moltoni Adams was responsible for obtaining all relevant statutory approvals prior to the commencement of demolition activities. An independent assessment of the site’s industrial archaeology and heritage significance was also undertaken. As the principal contractor Moltoni Adams was responsible for implementing appropriate safety and environmental controls during the demolition process.
The removal of the plant and buildings was completed in October 2006.
Due to the number of buildings of heritage interest on the site, Moltoni Adams’ development application was accompanied by an extensive Heritage Impact Assessment prepared by an independent consultant. The assessment involved consultation with the NSW Heritage Office and Lake Macquarie City Council’s Heritage Officer.
The main smelter was found to have archaeological significance from an industrial process perspective. In accordance with heritage principles it was fully documented and an archival record made prior to its demolition. Some 6,000 photographs were taken of the plant and industrial process. Architectural drawings were also prepared for buildings which were perceived to have high heritage values.
A Heritage Interpretation Plan (HIP) has been prepared for the site and endorsed by Council. The purpose of the HIP is to provide policies, strategies and detailed advice for interpreting the heritage significance and future planning of the site.
The Old Laboratory building has been retained, and in early 2009 a DA was approved by Council for the refurbishment of this building. The DA also included a Conservation Management Plan. The refurbishment is now complete, making the building suitable for use as office space by PCCS.
Management of Process Residues
Remaining materials and residues, generally by-products of the smelting process have been placed into the containment cell.
Site Remediation Activities
Remediation activities undertaken and now completed at PCCS include:
- Ongoing maintenance of the Site to address dust and surface water;
- Multiple site investigations to characterise and quantify all residue materials;
- Removal of materials which can be processed or recycled;
- Covering of the slag mounds with high density plastic liners to significantly reduce potential for material being blown from stockpiles;
- Increasing the capacity of on-site dams;
- Installation of temporary dams;
- Regular watering down of roads within the Site;
- Development and review of remediation options and documentation of a whole-of-site remediation strategy;
- Obtaining approvals from relevant Local, State and Commonwealth authorities including the Department of Environment and Climate Change (formerly Department of Environment and Conservation), Department of Planning, and Lake Macquarie City Council;
- The development of a staged implementation of the remediation strategies in parallel with the overall redevelopment of the Site;
- The implementation of ground and groundwater sampling and modelling program;
- Management of surface water treatment investigations. The surface water catchments on Site have been mapped and modelled to identify on-site water storage requirements. The data collected is being used to progressively manage stormwater run-off within and from the Site;
- Operation of onsite weather station;
- Operation of real-time air quality monitors. Continual monitoring of lead-in-air since closure indicates greater than 90% decrease in lead-in-air in the community;
- Implementation of a Bushfire Management Plan;
- Completion of the Containment Cell construction and cell capping works;
- Completion of remediation across the PCCS and former Incitec sites;
- Remaining concrete haul roads;
- Old Administration building;
- Effluent Treatment Plant (ETP).
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