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Meeting set for Wednesday on federal cleanup in Lewiston, Porter

Building 401
Deconstruction of a World War II-era building known as Building 401, on the former Lake Ontario Ordnance Works site in Lewiston, is one of the topics planned for a public meeting Wednesday. (Sharon Cantillon /Buffalo News)

Federal regulators will update an ongoing, high-profile cleanup project in Niagara County during a public meeting on Wednesday night.

The Army Corps of Engineers will host the public session at 6 p.m. in the Lewiston Senior Center, 4361 Lower River Road, not far from the project sites: the former Lake Ontario Ordnance Works and the Niagara Falls Storage Site.

The former ordnance works site was 7,500 acres in the towns of Lewiston and Porter reserved for weapons production starting in the 1940s. The Storage Site is a 191-acre parcel within the former ordnance works that contains a 10-acre, radiological waste landfill.

According to a press release from the agency, Wednesday's agenda will include a discussion on a number of topics:

-Ongoing study of properties that were part of the ordnance works and are now owned by Lewiston-Porter School District and Occidental Chemical.

-Proposed work on the former ordnance works wastewater treatment plant.

-Deconstruction of a building on the storage site property.

-A proposal to bring in a technical facilitator to help solve disputes between the agency and members of a volunteer, advisory panel that has challenged regulators' decisions during the investigation. In July, the Army Corps announced it would fund a facilitator to work with the Residents Restoration Advisory Board for the former Lake Ontario Ordnance Works.

The meeting will include a roundtable discussion in which members of the public can ask questions, as well as another session where the public will have the chance for one-on-one or small group chats with agency staff.

--Aaron Besecker

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