Soil concerns lead to contract addendum

The former Prospect Street School in Naugatuck. –RA ARCHIVE

The former Prospect Street School in Naugatuck. –RA ARCHIVE

NAUGATUCK — Potentially contaminated soil may hold up the redevelopment of the former Prospect Street School.

The borough has agreed to sell the former school at 100 Prospect St. to Southington-based Format LLC for $300,000. The developer behind Format LLC is Mat Florian.

Mayor N. Warren “Pete” Hess said Florian subsequently noticed the site used to contain an underground oil tank. Florian’s concern is that the tank could have leeched into the ground and contaminated soil, Hess said.

The Board of Mayor and Burgesses last week approved an addendum to the contract with Florian.

“Normally it would be our responsibility to deal with that if there are environmental issues. But we don’t know if there are environmental issues,” Hess said. “He wanted us to inspect it, figure out what was wrong, and guarantee that nothing is wrong. We said no. So he is going to pay for the cost of the inspection.”

If the inspection shows no soil contamination, the deal is expected to move forward. If the soil is contaminated, however, the borough will work with Florian to remediate the problem.

According to the addendum, if the cost of remediation is $25,000 or less the borough will pay half of the cost. The borough’s share would be given to Florian as a credit on his second payment.

If the cost of remediation is in excess of $25,000, the borough and Florian would reevaluate how to move forward, Hess said.

“I think it is a fair resolution,” Hess said.

Under the current agreement with the borough, Florian would pay $100,000 at the time of the closing and make yearly payments of $50,000 to the borough for the next four years.

Hess expects the closing on the sale to occur shortly after the soil issue is resolved.

A message left with Florian seeking comment was not returned.