Hull Barrett’s Darren Meadows Coordinates Successful Partnership between Public and Private Interests to Clean up Contaminated Sites

Darren Meadows, leader of Hull Barrett’s environmental practice group, coordinated due diligence investigations and preparation of an application under the Georgia Environmental Protection Division (EPD) Brownfield Program for the acquisition of the historic Sibley Mill. The Sibley Mill, which sits on the Augusta Canal near downtown Augusta, was the location of the Confederate Powder Works during the Civil War and most recently was operated as a textile mill. In 2010, the Augusta Canal Authority purchased the idle mill for preservation and redevelopment. Due to the long history of industrial uses, there were several environmental concerns, such as lead-based paint, asbestos, under ground and above ground tanks and extensive chemical usage, which led to further investigation and remediation. On August 26, 2010 the EPD approved the Brownfield application allowing the Augusta Canal Authority to close on real estate assets shortly thereafter. Mr. Meadows then assisted the Augusta Canal with an application for USEPA Brownfield grant funding and will continue to coordinate and oversee the ongoing remediation efforts at the property pursuant to the Georgia EPD-approved plan.

Serving as special environmental counsel to Garden City, Georgia, Darren was also able to coordinate environmental due diligence investigations and extensive negotiations with multiple Georgia agencies for the acquisition by Garden City of a former State Patrol Post where a significant petroleum underground storage tank (UST) release had occurred.  The 20 acres of land was contaminated by benzene from leaking underground gasoline tanks that were previously used to fuel Georgia State Patrol police cars. Garden City needed the property for expansion of its new Town Center, which was planned to serve as a mixed used district; however, the petroleum UST release and complications associated with the public ownership of the land posed significant hurdles. Darren was able to negotiate an agreement which allowed Garden City to remediate the property to the level appropriate for their planned development and obtain approval through the Georgia EPD Brownfield Program prior to the transfer of land.

Darren has also completed other Brownfield transactions and coordinated investigation and remediation of numerous other contaminated properties in Augusta and all across Georgia including Athens, Atlanta, Carrollton, Gainesville, Hazlehurst, Marietta, Savannah, and Vidalia, and often works with local counsel in other states to assist with environmental projects.