The latest cleanup plan comes at a time when the DEC, the city and Honeywell are working with the private firm, Brightfields, LLC, to redevelop 23 acres at the Tract I and Tract II sites. In 2012 Brightfields entered into an agreement to purchase them both for $1. As part of the transfer agreement, Brightfields would retain 18 acres for use as commercial property, with the remaining five acres to eventually be turned back to the city as a new community park. Brightfields representatives are hoping to be able to begin the cleanup later this year (2012), with the park to be completed by next spring and the commercial space to be ready for use by the end of 2013.
Other information about the site: the field surrounding the site spontaneously combusted - a pyrophoric fire - in 2001. The two-alarm fire took three hours and 19 firemen to put out. Fortunately there are four fire halls within a mile and a half of the field where the fire broke out. Strangely, though, the Niagara Falls municipal firemen were assisted by members of the Niagara Falls Air Reserve Base Fire Department, who had to drive five miles to get there. The Niagara Falls Air Reserve Base Fire Department is specially trained and equipped to handle hazardous material fires such as those involving radioactive or toxic chemical materials; regular fire departments are not. A couple years before, a ground fire broke out in the same area and roads were shut down for more than a square mile. Traffic was backed up and rerouted and generally frustrated while members of the Niagara Falls Air Reserve Base Fire Department fought the fire wearing white protective suits--the kind of suits you see in movies, the kind people wear if they are handling toxic chemical or radioactive materials. (http://www.ask.ne.jp/~hankaku/english/niagara_fall.html#0004 no longer online)
With 3 and a half years between visits you can clearly see how much it has deteriorated in the meantime. Entire sections of floor have collapsed, blocking hallways that were clear during the first trip. Not the safest place on earth. It was -5F during the first trip and 95F on the second. ha!