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Everett Smelter cleanup

Ecology is cleaning up lead and arsenic contamination left behind by the Everett Smelter, in residential and industrial areas of Northeast Everett.

The Everett Smelter was operated by Asarco from 1894-1912, but the contamination wasn't discovered until 1990. Smelter operations left high levels of arsenic and lead on the former smelter property. Contaminated particles from the smokestacks settled over a 1.1 square mile area.

We're more than halfway done

We have now completed cleanup work on more than half of the approximately 700 homes in the uplands area and at American Legion Memorial Park. We have sampled for contamination at all the properties that requested it. For details, see our cleanup progress page.
Map of the Everett Smelter cleanup area, showing the overall site boundary, the uplands and lowlands boundaries, and the footprint of the former smelter facility.

The cleanup site is divided into Uplands (residential) and Lowlands cleanup areas. The two areas are on different cleanup schedules.

From 1999-2007, we managed cleanup of the most highly contaminated areas, including the former smelter property.

In 2009, we received funding through a bankruptcy settlement with Asarco to continue cleanup work.

We have now spent most of the settlement funds on residential cleanups in the uplands area and development of a cleanup plan for the lowlands area. We are seeking additional state funds to continue cleanup.

With the remaining settlement funds, we will:

  • Complete prioritized phases of lowlands area cleanup.

What’s new?

June 2018

  • Construction begins in July at the intersection of SR 529 and East Marine View Drive. The project will affect traffic in the area for about three months. Please see our recent mailer for details on traffic revisions and detours. Thanks for your patience with this important project!
  • We're beginning to work with property owners in the 2019 cleanup group (about 20 properties north of Broadway, west of the former smelter facility). This group was chosen because they are closest to the former facility.
  • We are offering free soil sampling to all properties that have not yet been sampled. We'll begin sampling this summer and expect to continue through fall.
  • We plan to clean up Wiggums Hollow Park this fall, beginning after Labor Day. Look for updates here as the time gets closer.


March 2018

  • Construction is complete on 11 properties in the Delta neighborhood. Residents are now responsible for caring for their new landscaping.

October 2017 

  • Construction began October 2 for cleanup of 11 properties in the Delta neighborhood. 
  • We finished sampling soil on all the properties that requested it. If you still wish to have your property sampled, call our hotline at 425-446-1024.   
  • The Lowlands construction project to remove highly-contaminated soil under SR-529 ramps will be postponed until 2018.

August 2017

  • We selected a contractor for cleanup of 10 homes in the Delta neighborhood. Construction started October 2. 
  • Cleanup of area A1 in the lowlands is postponed. Excavation of contaminated soil will likely take place in summer 2018.

March 2017

  • A new groundwater study is in progress to aid in the design of cleanup in area B2 in the lowlands.

December 2016

  • We began the cleanup process for 11 properties in the Delta neighborhood.
  • We completed soil sampling on 45 properties in the fall, as well as Pine Street Mobile Home Park and Everett Housing Authority’s 12 Pines neighborhood. Great news — we found that 12 Pines will not need cleanup.

November 2016

  • After public review and comment, Ecology finalized the Lowlands Cleanup Action Plan and related documents. Technical reports and public involvement materials are available in our online document repository.

August 2016

  • We completed soil sampling at Everett Housing Authority’s Baker Heights neighborhood. Great news — we found that most of Baker Heights will not need cleanup!

March 2016

  • We completed soil removal on 22 properties north of Broadway.

2015

  • American Legion Memorial Park is now open. Ecology completed the soil removal and landscape restoration project.
  • After public review and comment, Ecology finalized the Supplemental Remedial Investigation and Feasibility Study reports for the lowlands area. Technical reports and public involvement materials are available in our online Document Repository.