BROAD BROOK MILL
EAST WINDSOR, CT
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The Broad Brook Mill site, formerly known as the Millbrook Condominiums site, is in the Broad Brook section of East Windsor, Connecticut. The property encompassed by the Broad Brook Mill site includes two lots. This property is used for both commercial and residential purposes. One 8.67-acre lot is occupied by a former industrial mill building converted into a residential condominium building, two garage units and a former boiler house. The other 1.93-acre lot is occupied by a commercial complex and a two-story brick office building.
The site was used for industry dating back to at least 1835 when a woolen mill was built by the Phelps Manufacturing Co., displacing earlier gristmills, sawmills and a tannery. In 1849, the Broad Brook Co. bought the mill and continued manufacturing woolen products until 1951. Manufacturing during this period included picking, carding, spinning, dressing, weaving, scouring, carbonizing, napping, shearing and dyeing. To power the woolen mill, the Broad Brook Co. operated a coal gasification plant, which contaminated the site with PAHs as coal gasification byproducts. In 1954, United Aircraft Corp., now United Technologies Corp., bought the site property and owned it until 1977. The company then leased storage space at the site until 1981. From 1954 to 1967, United Technologies manufactured printed circuit boards, using the following processes: coil winding to produce low-voltage transformers; electroplating; chemical etching; photographic development; potting; soldering; assembly and testing. In addition, former mill buildings were used for the following activities: operation of a machine shop to produce small parts needed in the manufacturing process; a parts cleaner station, which used chlorinated solvents; a wastewater treatment plant to treat electroplating water; a paint spray booth to paint assemblies; a boiler house to provide steam and heat in the facility structures; a water treatment plant to provide quality water for manufacturing processes; and storage of surplus materials and equipment. From 1968 to 1974, the company made boron filament at the site. From 1974 to 1977, there was a boron filament manufacturing operation at the site, operated by Composite Materials Corp., a subsidiary of Aluminum Company of America. Composite Technology Inc. continued manufacturing from 1977 to 1982.
In 1977, United Technologies sold the property to Broad Brook Center, whose current existence is unknown. Broad Brook Center, Inc. leased building space to commercial and industrial users. In 1982, Broad Brook Center, Inc. conveyed the site property to James R. Testa and John Bartus, who in 1985, doing business as the partnership Broad Brook Center Associates, transferred title to the site property to Broad Brook Center Associates. In January 1986, the site property was sold to Connecticut Building Corporation. In May 1986, a fire destroyed many of the former mill buildings. In July 1986, Connecticut Building Corporation applied for a permit to develop 21 residential condominium units in the former mill building that had survived the fire. These residential condominiums were developed between 1990 and 1993.
EPA proposed the Broad Brook Mill site in East Windsor, Connecticut for listing on the Superfund program’s National Priorities List (NPL) in December 2000. In December 2003, EPA, the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection (CT DEP), and Hamilton Sundstrand finalized agreements necessary to defer this site to the state. The state took the lead in the cleanup and EPA provided oversight. CT DEP ordered Hamilton Sundstrand to develop a cleanup plan and put it in place.
What Has Been Done to Clean Up the Site?
The site was deferred to the State of Connecticut. EPA continues to review site-related plans and documents.
What Is the Current Site Status?
In October 2004, Hamilton Sundstrand acquired this 21-unit mill building formerly used as residential condominiums as well as associated property from the Millbrook condominium association and individual unit owners. Residents no longer live on the property and the site is fenced.
After receiving public comments on a proposed cleanup plan, and after a public meeting and a public hearing, CT DEP approved a cleanup plan in November 2010. The Connecticut Department of Energy & Environmental Protection (formerly CT DEP) approved the plans for cleaning up groundwater as well as soil and sediment in September 2011. Hamilton Sundstrand is pursuing the permitting to begin work.
Although the site has not been added to EPA’s Superfund list, if the cleanup does not go according to the agreement, the Agency will look to finalize the proposed National Priorities Listing and proceed with the cleanup under the Superfund program.