Two topics dominated the conversation at the Rocky Hill Riverfront Preservation Society's , the Foundry and the town landfill.
According to their website, the Rocky Hill Riverfront Preservation Society is a "group of concerned property owners committed to protecting Rocky Hill's riverfront for generations to come."
Mayor Anthony LaRosa gave a "State of Rocky Hill Address" and answered prepared and impromptu questions from those in attendance.
"There has never been a time, we have invited the mayor and he has not come," said Steven Finkel, who hosted the event.
Republican Minority Leader Nadine Bell also attended the meeting, which was also a community . A raffle held at the event raised money benefitting the society.
member Jim Woodworth narrated a slideshow presentation on the Meadows, farming and the Connecticut River.
For more information about the Riverfront Preservation Society visit their website.
LaRosa informed those in the audience that the first building on the former Foundry property was taken down on Monday. However, material is still being trucked from the site. The second building is expected to be demolished in the near future.
Cherry Hill Construction, Inc., the , was chosen because they can handle the demolition of the property, removal of lead paint and asbestos and remediation of the land, according to LaRosa.
The developer would not be taking any foundations down until the project has been engineered, LaRosa stated.
The debris on the towers remains and the , LaRosa said. However, the doorway to Friendly Auto has been secured, he added.
The mayor and town manager are preparing a letter to send the attorney for the developer to talk about better securing some of the buildings on the property.
"These things should be taken care of," LaRosa said.
The Health Department, all public utilities and the town's public works department have been on the site to advise Cherry Hill Construction, Inc. on the demolition.
According to the society's website, Meadow Properties LLC signed a Stewardship Permit in October that would allow them to reopen and cap the old town dump. However, as of Wednesday night, no formal plans have been submitted.
Many of the members of the society oppose the dump being reopened and feel it will create additional dust and noise, devalue neighboring properties and the effect the quality of life in the area.
"When the landfill was closed, it was not closed properly," LaRosa said.
The dump has been dormant since the 1970's, but there is no evidence of any contamination on the site, according to the mayor, state representatives and the residents in the area.
Riverfront Preservation Society is also worried about the truck traffic that would be generated from the site.
When the dump was open, garbage trucks passing one another on Glastonbury Avenue had to pull in their mirrors or they would smash because the road was too narrow to accomodate them, LaRosa told the audience.
However, it is unclear if anything can be done about the increased truck traffic that would be generated by the dump.
"We really can't do much of anything," LaRosa said. “I can’t give you a definitive answer because I don’t know.”
However, he is planning to meet with Diane Duva of the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, in the near future.
"I want the state to know what is going," the mayor said.
He added that the road is already "beat to Hell" and it is going to get worse at the state's expense. The town has also negotiated a tipping fee to help with the wear and tear that will be caused to the town's roads by the increased traffic.
The mayor is currently looking at hiring an independent traffic engineer to do a study of Glastonbury Avenue at the expense of Meadow Properties LLC. A decision has not been made on when or if an engineer will be hired.
LaRosa also explained if Meadow Properties LLC walks away from the property, it could cost the town. He said anyone who has previously dumped on the land would have to pay and the town is the only agency known to have done that. Though, the mayor believes several other towns and agencies have used the land for dumping.
The mayor also handed Finkel a letter that would allow him to assist in the search for an independent licensed professional/engineer. However, the letter is not bidding and the professional chosen by Finkel would have to be approved by the town. Finkel is looking for a professional who has no connection with DEEP.