Demolition begins today at Craig Walgreens site |

Demolition begins today at Craig Walgreens site

Collin Smith

— John Gorski expects the demolition at the corner of Victory Way and Green Street to gear up today, bringing the construction of a Craig Walgreens closer.

Gorski is the manager of Bencor Craig LP, the developing partnership created to finance construction. Bencor exclusively develops sites for Walgreens stores and is use to some of the problems that have cropped up in Craig.

One concern is soil contamination from an aboveground waste oil tank and four buried gasoline storage tanks from a service station that occupied the site before.

This is very common, Gorski said.

“Walgreens likes to be on corners, so we buy lots of old gas stations and are very used to digging up old tanks. It’s nothing unusual,” Gorski said.

JHL Industrial Services, out of Centennial, first drilled the soil in January. Soil samples were collected and taken to a lab for analysis.

The soil analysis showed little gasoline contamination, Gorski said. JHL is expected to dig the tanks out and simply fill the area with fresh soil. An environmental company, Bureau Veritas, and a representative from the Colorado Office of Public Safety are expected to oversee the process.

Gasoline contamination can be very serious to a community, Gorski said. In addition to the possibility of ground water contamination, if vapors are concentrated strong enough, they can seep into a building and act as a carcinogen.

“We probably wouldn’t close on a site that had that kind of contamination,” Gorski said. “We don’t have anything close to those levels.”

Federal regulations require there be less than five parts per billion of gasoline contaminants in ground water.

Another issue before construction is to move the utilities, which run through the prospective construction site. Walgreens bought four lots side-by-side, and the city utility lines run right through the middle.

The development partnership has plans to go before the Craig City Council and the Zoning Commission to work out rezoning the four lots this month. Redirecting the utilities will be addressed then.

Bencor Craig LP has given the city part of the corner lot in the event it would want to straighten Green Street in the future.

The developers plans to submit the building permit and be ready for primary construction in October.

“Then we’ll make the decision whether to build through the winter or wait until the spring,” Gorski said.

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