The Grieves Woolen Mill was an abandoned textile factory on the banks of the Illinois River. Its deteriorating condition created a public health hazard and hindered redevelopment. The property not only failed to produce revenue for the city, it became an economic blight to the community.


After the city took title to the abandoned site, Foth worked with officials to control the hazardous contaminants on the property—which included asbestos, lead, hydrocarbons and pesticides—through demolition and site security. We sought and obtained grants and revolving loans totaling $1.01 million, including brownfield dollars from the state of Illinois, U.S. EPA, and a Tax Increment Financing district. Next, Foth conducted a comprehensive site investigation of soil and groundwater. Remediation objectives were designed to meet residential standards using a combination of TACO Tier 1, Tier 2, pathway exclusion, select hot spot removal, engineered barriers and institutional controls.


Our Remedial Action Plan helped our client successfully attain a No Further Remediation letter from the state. Completion of the project transformed a hazardous brownfield site into prime downtown riverfront development property, increased public safety, provided economic development opportunities and generated community pride. Funding sources were integrated resulting in a city match for the $1 million cleanup effort of less than 5%. The property is now a multiuse development consisting of a riverfront park and residential spaces.