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Pits 9 Feet Deep Needed to Clean Orchard St. Site

About 20 truckloads of soil will be removed each day for about three weeks, Louis A. Riccio said.

Two 9-foot deep pits will be dug at separate locations of the Orchard Street Property as part of extensive environmental remediation measures needed at the site, and workers will take measures to ensure unsafe areas are fenced off and neighbors are disturbed as little as possible during the project, according to the executive director of the Madison Housing Authority.

Only 2 feet of soil needs to be removed over most of the site, and testing shows pollution from the site's years being used by an asphalt paving business did not seep onto neighboring properties, executive director Louis A. Riccio said Monday.

A dilapidated garage that is technically on neighboring property but is on the Orchard Street Property will be demolished

Executive director Louis A. Riccio updated the Borough Council and residents at Monday's council meeting on plans to remediate and build affordable housing on polluted land near the intersection of Orchard Street and Strickland Place.

Three homes are to be built at 13, 15 and 17 Strickland Place built in Victorian, Colonial and Gambrel styles, Riccio said. The Victorian home will be reserved for Madison residents who meet a set criteria while the other two homes would be made available through a state raffle system for those who qualify. The organizers of the project will publish advertisements to let people know how to sign up to be considered.

Council members and neighbors said during the meeting they support the planned community project, which is a joint venture of the Madison Affordable Housing Corporation, Madison Housing Authority and Morris Habitat for Humanity, as a way to help lower income families achieve the American dream and clean up blighted land in the borough.

The presentation was made Monday because the project . Work could begin in the coming months and the total project is expected to cost about $1.1 million, Riccio said Monday.

Plans will be submitted to the borough engineer for review and then the council will be able to consider releasing the funds.

The homes will have three bedrooms and two full bathrooms, and fully conform to the area's zoning laws, Riccio said.

Additional information about the property and its history is available on RoseNet.

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