CANTON — As the city of Canton shovels its way out of having too much dirt on the site of a potential fire station in Laurel Canyon, the city is facing a shortage of usable soil at another location.
But, unfortunately, one problem will not solve the other.
The City Council voted unanimously last Thursday to spend $120,000 in unbudgeted funds to haul in enough dirt to permanently close a long-inactive landfill on Ridge Road in south Canton.
Canton City Manager Scott Wood said Wednesday the Georgia Environmental Protection Division is requiring the city to close the landfill because of concerns that methane gas emitted from the waste there could be a hazard.
Wood said since Canton was told by EPD several years ago to re-cap the landfill, the city has considered removing the soil from the site of the proposed Laurel Canyon fire station and using it to cap the landfill. But the dirt in Laurel Canyon does not meet the necessary requirements to be suitable to use for the cap.
“(The dirt in Laurel Canyon) doesn’t have the right permeability and clay components,” Wood said. “For most of us, dirt is dirt, but for gardeners and scientists, it’s different.”
Burke Murph, a project manager with Stantec, a third-party firm working on the project, said Wednesday there is yet another mass of earth — about 3,400 cubic yards of earth — on the site of the landfill. And though a scientific analysis previously concluded that this dirt could be used for the cap, it has now turned out to be inadequate as well.
“The stockpile (at the landfill) is not uniform. Therefore, there was good dirt mixed in with poor dirt,” Murph said. “The geotechnical investigation that was performed was on a section of the dirt that was actually good.”
Now, 3,400 cubic yards of quality dirt must be hauled in, Murph said. Several potential sites to pull this soil from have been identified, he said.
Murph said the cap on this landfill, which measures just more than one acre, will not be the first, but EPD is requiring Canton to re-cap it because environmental regulations have heightened since the first closure.
Wood said once the project is complete, the total cost to the city will be about $200,000.