This article is missing information and facts.
-The building that these guys took down had been vacant for many years (over a decade?). It was not a bustling industrial business location and struggled to get a lease filled. The lot flooded frequently and the former building was filled with asbestos! The owners had the remnants of this building sitting on the lot? If so with every rain it washed into the river.
-Since 2019, these owners were increasing their solid waste dumping on the site which led to multiple non compliance tickets from DEM. Go take a look at 175 Post road and see for yourself.
-After their second meeting at the planning board (where they were issued a continuance) hey started bulldozing dirt around and were then issued a cease and desist from the city for not holding a solid waste permit. They were then issued a Notice Of Violation from DEM for multiple offenses including disrupting 25000 square feet of wetlands.
-The site doesn’t flood in “extended period of heavy rain” it floods after a normal rain storm and is a 100 to 500 year FLOOD PLAIN. It floods worse than Unit Tools across the street (Unit Tools suffered 300k in damages in 2010).
-Warwick's Comprehensive Plan is key here: The proposal of storing any sort of chemicals of toxic materials near a river goes against the comp plan for protecting the Pawtuxet River and Warwick’s environmental assets as a whole. This is mentioned multiple times in the plan. In addition, building on a flood plain ON THE RIVER goes against Warwick comprehensive plan of "intensifying efforts to make Warwick a “green” community, protect and enhance Warwick’s streams, ponds, and coastal waters by implementing measures to reduce nonpoint source pollution, and work on climate change resilience with the state." The city must stand by their goals.
-These guys threatened to close the trail after they were denied at the THIRD planning board meeting.
-Their “explanatory note” as Howell put it, was a threat stating something to the effect of “if all goes well at the planning board meeting we will donate the trail, if not we will gate it because it’s ours.”
-Howell also left out (or maybe wasn't told) that they want to MOVE the trail which will disrupt more wetlands and they’ll never get the permit from DEM to do that.
-The planning board and the public align in their concern about flooding and Pawtuxet river pollution.
In my opinion these guys bought a lemon. The previous owner must still be celebrating that he was able to get it off his hands!
I appreciate local papers and the work that goes into keeping a free press going, however, pieces like this are concerning. I wish that the writer had done more due diligence.
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