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County finalizing plans to close Resh landfill and open its replacement

December 28, 1998|By SCOTT BUTKI

It will cost about $12 million to close Resh Sanitary Landfill and another $12 million to get its replacement, Lund Landfill, ready for operation, Washington County officials said Tuesday.

However, those expenses can be paid over a period of several years, perhaps with general obligation bonds, said Gary Rohrer, public works director. It will be at least five to seven years before the county would have to start paying closing costs, he said.

The Resh expenses are necessary to meet federal environmental regulations, he said. The site must be capped to prevent leakage of pollutants into the air and water.

The county must also have a system in place to monitor methane gas emissions. Methane is the natural product of decomposing trash.

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The county's long-term plans for Resh may include a park, Rohrer said.

The Lund costs include $4.7 million to build a bridge and access road connecting the site to I-40, he said.

The 425-acre Lund landfill site is tucked in a bend of the Conococheague Creek near Resh.

Rohrer and Robert Davenport, county solid waste director, updated the Washington County Commissioners on the project during an informal orientation meeting Tuesday.

Resh will run out of space for trash in about 30 months, Rohrer said. Lund should open in 24 to 28 months, he said.

The county may need to temporarily export its trash if, for some reason, Lund does not open by the time Resh closes, county officials said.

An agreement with nearby property owners locks the county into building a bridge connecting the site to I-40 instead of upgrading roads on the same side of the Conococheague as the landfill.

It will take about 18 months to build the bridge, Rohrer said. It will take about one year for part of the site to be prepared for use as a landfill, he said. Those two projects can go forward at the same time, he said.

The Lund landfill has enough space to handle Washington County trash for 80 years, Davenport said.

It will provide enough landfill space for the lifetime of the commissioners and county officials and probably their childrens' lifetimes as well, Davenport said.

As part of the hour-long meeting with the county commissioners, Davenport showed statistics for the present plans and how they compared to earlier, more conservative, projections.

Originally the landfill was estimated to last only 25 years before running out of space, he said. The economic value was estimated at $148 million rather than $480 million, he said.

The design for the landfill includes wetlands, reforestation and storm water management ponds.

Wendell L. Lund, a Washington, D.C., attorney, sold the land to the county in 1990.

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