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Thursday, April 3, 2014
HEATHER N. GRIMMER/CONTRIBUTOR - The property at 316 Willow St., formerly Peters Dry Cleaning, is being remediated by the state Department of Conservation. The cleanup is expected to take two to three weeks.

The state Department of Environmental Conservation is removing contaminated soil from the Willow Street property that formerly housed Peters Dry Cleaning.

The store became unusable in December of 2011 after it partially collapsed, although it had been vacated prior to that when the business had moved to Main Street. The state declared it a brownfield site because of chemicals that had made their way into the ground. It was demolished in October of 2013.

Cleanup is expected to take two or three weeks and is being paid for by the state Superfund. Once remediated, the hole will be filled with stone and graded. After the property is remediated, the city is expected to take possession of it, ending a drawn out saga between the city and the property.

When the building collapsed, it had been owned by Patrick McFall, who was found guilty in City Court of a sanitation violation in May of 2012. He then pled guilty to a building code violation in October of 2012 and agreed to pay more than $38,000 in past-due property taxes and utility charges.

McFall then attempted to sell the property to another man for $1, but that sale was eventually voided.

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