WILTON — Progress is being made at three vacant buildings of concern to town officials, it was reported at Tuesday’s meeting of selectmen.

The board had received an update on the Forster Mill and the Wilton Tannery from Town Manager Rhonda Irish. The third building, the former Wilton Primary School, was sold to Michael Wells earlier this year.

Asbestos removal has been completed in most of the Forster building. Crews have left the site at times over the last few weeks for other emergency work, she said.

Once the work, including air tests, is completed, the Maine Department of Environmental Protection and the federal Environmental Protection Agency will review the work, she said.

A road closure at the site on Depot Street is being considered for a short period while the owner brings in a crane to finish the demolition work on the building either this fall or next spring, Irish said.

Funds from an EPA grant awarded to Wilton this spring are expected to be available Oct. 1, she told the board.

The grant is expected to be used to reduce the amount of hazardous substances on the 15-acre former Wilton Tannery site at 833 Route 2 in East Wilton.

The EPA’s Brownfields program grants are used for properties where redevelopment or reuse may be complicated by the presence or potential for a hazardous substance, pollutant or contaminant.

The town will need to hire an environmental consultant to help develop a work plan with continued direction from DEP, she said. Androscoggin Valley Council of Governments will also continue to help the town on the project.

The board considered walking through the property during an upcoming meeting.

In other business, the board was asked whether or not the Conservation Committee should pursue an idea to build an observation platform at the bog behind the public safety building and American Legion Hall. 

The bog provides a view of wildlife but is down a steep embankment from the Main Street buildings. The board decided they would like to hear a presentation on it at their next meeting, especially in terms of liability, before making that decision.

Recreation Director Frank Donald Sr. reported that the playground structure for Bass Park is expected to arrive at the end of the month. He is planning a community work day if he can’t find volunteers to help set up the equipment on Oct. 13 and 14.

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