Frequently Asked Questions about the Krejci Dump Site Clean-Up
Why are trucks using Hines Hill Road instead of constructing and using on and off-ramps directly from the Site to I-271?
Using direct access from the Site to I-271 instead of Hines Hill Road was evaluated during the development of the Feasibility Study prior to selection of the Site clean-up. The evaluations identified administrative, technical, and cost issues which led to the conclusion that such on and off-ramps were impractical. The administrative issues included the requirements to gain both State and Federal Department of Transportation approval for such ramps and compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act. These administrative procedures would require substantial additional time and cost to complete.
The technical issues included that the Interstate design standards require long acceleration and deceleration ramps, and that the room to construct ramps of the required length may not be available before the highway emerges from the Site plateau onto one of the bridged areas. In addition, since the Site is located above the elevation of the Interstate, substantial excavation would be required to bring a ramp down to the elevation of the highway. From a technical perspective, addressing and implementing this alternative transportation approach would be time-consuming, costly, and problematic (especially considering the amount of bridging on I-271 in the immediate area of the Site plateau).
When was this decision made and what was the public involvement in the decision?
The September 2001 Feasibility Study summarized the above findings, and recognized and evaluated the short-term impacts of the truck traffic on Hines Hill Road. The National Park Service (NPS) issued a Proposed Plan on November 14, 2001 that described the Preferred Alternative and the selection process. On November 20, 2001, a copy of the notice of availability (NOA) was also mailed to the people on the "interested parties" list that included local officials.
The NPS held a thirty-day public comment period on the Proposed Plan and published the NOA of the Proposed Plan (including notice of the public comment period and a public meeting) in both the Cleveland Plain Dealer and the Akron Beacon Journal on November 25, 2001. The Preferred Alternative, as detailed in the Feasibility Study, included the transportation of waste materials to State Highway 8 via Hines Hill Road. A public meeting was held in the park on December 17, 2001 to provide information to the public on the Proposed Plan and all clean-up alternatives presented in the Feasibility Study, and to receive questions and comments from the public.
NPS received no adverse comments on the Preferred Alternative during the public comment period (including at the public meeting), and received no comments suggesting the reconsideration of the construction of on and off-ramps onto I-271. Based in part on the lack of comments, the Department of Interior (DOI) chose the Preferred Alternative as the Selected Remedy in the Record of Decision issued on September 27, 2002. The NPS notified the public of the Record of Decision in the two newspapers mentioned above on October 20, 2002, and also mailed a copy of the notice on October 15, 2002 to the people on the interested parties list including local residents that attended the public meeting.
Does the NPS anticipate that this decision will be changed?
No. As partially described in the preceding paragraph, The NPS went through a comprehensive process mandated by statutes and regulations, with a number of opportunities for public input that resulted in the selected clean-up action (which, as stated above, included the use of Hines Hill Road). Moreover, a federal court judge and appropriate representatives of the U.S. Department of Justice and the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency agreed with and/or approved the selected clean-up.
Protecting human health and the environment from Site hazardous substances is best served by the expeditious commencement and completion of the Site clean-up rather than the long delays which would necessarily result from the study, approval process, and construction of direct Site access to I-271. Additional lengthy delays in implementing the Site clean-up would result from the process required to amend both the Site Record of Decision and the Consent Decree (the legally binding court-ordered document governing performance of the Site clean-up).