Facilities to remove underground gas tank from Meacham Street

In keeping with the construction projects regularly in progress on campus, Facilities will be removing a 10,000-gallon gas tank from Meacham Street. The Williams community received notice of the planned extraction last week via Daily Messages.

The tank’s removal is slated for April 20 and will take approximately one week. The contractor working on the project is Maxymillian Technologies, an environmental services and construction firm that has been involved in projects throughout Massachusetts. Some of its recent endeavors include a Chester waterfront redevelopment project, a Nashua River water treatment system project, landfill creation at Wellesley College and cleanup of the New Bedford Harbor.

“The cost of the extraction was $33,986,” said Thomas Mahar, project manager for Facilities. In addition to using Maxymillian, Facilities is using a resource known as Dig Safe to ensure that the extraction can occur in compliance with Massachusetts state laws, and more importantly, will pose no danger to people or equipment. Because the tank is located underground, this is especially important.

“This extraction is a routine procedure,” said Mahar. The subterranean tank was installed in front of the Facilities Garage at the end of Meacham Street in order to keep College vehicles running. “It’s been there so that we could buy fuel in bulk for the College fleet and service vehicles,” Mahar said.

The tank’s extraction, which will be worked on around the clock, will block off parking in front of B&G North for the duration. A construction fence will be installed at the site, and one lane on the north side should remain open for tractor-trailer deliveries. The day the tank itself is removed, this lane too will be blocked off.

Despite the current financial crisis, the College deemed the tank’s removal a necessary expense: “The tank had come to the end of its safely useful life,” Mahar said. “The removal will not cause a dramatic shift in College functioning, and should not be a hindrance to Facilities.”

Rather than replacing the tank with another 10,000-gallon model, Facilities has opted to go down another route. The enormous extracted tank will be replaced with a new 500-gallon model. “This will service lawn mowers, weed whackers, et cetera,” Mahar said.