Moving forward at The Landing

Lauren Steinheimer
Artist's rendering of future development at The Landing shows separate working sites, including: an RV Park; an interactive, outdoor museum; trails for hiking and biking.

Mount Shasta’s former lumber mill property known as The Landing was the subject of a Brownfields success story recently submitted to the Environmental Protection Agency from the California Department of Toxic Substances Control.

Siskiyou County Economic Development Council Program Manager Logan Smith said the first on-site environmental cleanup at The Landing will occur this spring, and about 70% of the property has already been determined to be clean and ready for redevelopment.

Cleanup and progress

Smith estimated the first cleanup will occur mid-April and will include excavation and off-site transportation of contaminated soil. The small piles of soil sitting there now are from another city project and will be used to replace the contaminated soil once it’s removed.

The City of Mount Shasta has been working with the California Department of Toxic Substances Control and the EPA since 2000 to complete environmental assessment for the property,

“The state and the feds are really excited to see progress,” Smith said.

The economic development council partnered with the city on the project about seven years ago, and Smith said together they’ve leveraged over $1 million in environmental assessment grant funding.

“The city and SCEDC have applied for $1.2 million in further Brownfields assessment and clean up funds for our region and we are working to find ‘master planning’ funding for the Mount Shasta Landing to be shovel ready for future development,” Smith wrote in an email.

“The Landing is 127 acres, which is a lot of property to do environmental assessment and cleanup on,” Smith said, referring to the Brownfields assessments dating back to 1998.

Brownfields is a term used in urban planning to describe land previously used for industrial purposes that may have been contaminated with hazardous waste or pollution, or is feared to be so.

“The existence of brownfield contamination presents a threat to the environment and human health, but understanding the specifics of these threats and what needs to be done to assess, clean, and redevelop the property is imperative,” according to the area wide plan.

Future development

The Area Wide Plan for The Landing, which is available on the project website at www.thelandingmtshasta.com/, states that the general consensus for first steps in the process include development of:

• An RV park,

• An interactive, outdoor museum and recreational park/green space,

• Multi-use trails for hiking and biking,

• A commercial/retail section,

• A light industrial section,

• A performing arts/general arts center, and

• Complementary hospitality services.

Smith said he hopes to provide an update to Mount Shasta’s Planning Commission during their March 15 meeting.

There is currently no official use of the site, although it is patrolled by police and occasionally used by hikers, bikers and transients.

History

The Landing is the former site of the Roseburg Lumber Mill, a major employer in the City of Mount Shasta. The property was deeded to the city about 30 years ago and is zoned for multi-purpose use.

When the mill closed in 1985, more than 150 jobs were lost, resulting in overall decline in employment throughout Mount Shasta and neighboring cities.

The area wide plan cites the mill as the city’s largest employer and main economic driver in the area, referring to its closure as the cause of “a serious slowdown in economic growth that has persisted for years.”

For more information, visit http://www.thelandingmtshasta.com/.