Oval’s lead contamination not as deep as first feared
LEAD contamination of North Wangaratta football oval is not as deep as first feared, meaning far less soil will need to be excavated, saving time and money.
Rural City of Wangaratta chief executive officer Brendan McGrath said extensive tests had shown the penetration of lead pellets from the adjoining gun club over many decades was generally shallower than orginally expected.
“We were thinking we would have to remove soil to a depth of 300 to 500 millimetres from the contaminated area, but instead we’re looking at a depth of 100 to 150 millimetres,” Mr McGrath told the Wangaratta Chronicle on Friday.
Around a third of the oval will need to have contaminated soil removed.
And the entire oval is to be reconstructed and reshaped, with new drainage and irrigation expected to deliver a ‘first class’ facility.
But the big question still remains when - with the North Wangaratta Football Netball Club having been without full use of the oval since May last year.
“We are working towards getting everything done as early as possible,” Mr McGrath said.
Council expects to put tenders out next month for soil excavation and removal works, along with the oval’s reconstruction, and is hoping the project will start before Christmas.
Mr McGrath said discussions were also continuing into whether the contaminated soil can be disposed of on the adjoining Wangaratta Gun Club land, instead of the Bowser landfill or a site in Melbourne - which would save both time and money.
“Our preferred option is the gun club...we’re still talking to the club and EPA on this,” he said.