Do you have questions about asbestos in town?

It's an important topic and we want to make sure everyone stays in-the-know, especially those who live close to the Metrolina Warehouse site. The Town of Davidson will serve as the local connector to resources, since we are not the experts in this arena. 

The best, most up-to-date information about the project may be found at the NC. Department of Environmental Quality's website here.

NC Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) & Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Public Information Session

On July 30, 2020 at 6:30 p.m, the DEQ and EPA, along with the Town of Davidson, hosted a digital public information session about asbestos in town.

The full meeting may be viewed on the town's YouTube channel here.

The presentation slides may be viewed in a PDF here

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and N.C. Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ)
Expanded Sampling

Expanded Sampling

In response to community concerns at the January 2020 meeting, DEQ and EPA have expanded the asbestos-soil sampling area in the neighborhood surrounding the former Carolina Asbestos Company. The free soil sampling is for properties not sampled by EPA in 2017 that are located within the expanded sampling area. The area is shown in orange on the map

The samples will be taken outside, and homeowners do not have to be present for sampling to occur. Homeowners will receive results once the laboratory analysis is complete. If needed, the DEQ and EPA will work with property owners to do further tests and, if necessary, remove asbestos-containing material from those properties that test above the EPA’s health-based exposure limit. The expanded sampling area may be modified in the future based on data collected over the coming months.

Asbestos Watch Area

The DEQ's department’s Division of Waste Management hosted a public information meeting on January 13, 2020, presented a plan to manage the asbestos issue and promote awareness in the community, proposing an “Asbestos Watch Area” to monitor and manage soil disturbances in the neighborhood. The ‘asbestos watch area’ would define an area where residents would be advised to consult with state or local officials before digging or demolition.

The plan is designed to provide a network of professionals who can help residents identify and manage any risks of asbestos that might be buried on their property. Town planners would flag any projects in the zone for special attention. The watch area designation would appear in county land records, so any future buyers would be warned ahead of time of possible asbestos. It’s a form of notice that would not attach warnings and land use restrictions to individual deeds; both of which would require signed consent by each property owner.

January 2020 presentation

During that meeting, residents asked for more sampling over a larger area and sampling of properties that were not tested in 2017.

Managing Risks

The Division of Waste Management and Department of Health and Human Services' (DHHS) Health Hazards Control Unit have been coordinating with other state and local government agencies to manage risks at four different ongoing public works projects in the area surrounding the 301 Depot Street property. These projects are: 

Metrolina Warehouse Site

The North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality (NCDEQ) is responsible for work being done at the Metrolina Warehouse site (301 Depot Street). The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is responsible for remediating the properties adjacent to the Metrolina Warehouse site and in the surrounding area. The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (Division of Public Health) can answer questions regarding health concerns based on potential asbestos exposure.

Brownfields Site

When the first Brownfields applicant decided not to redevelop the site, a second applicant came into the program and proposed a more modest repurposing of existing structures on the property. This new plan does not require excavation of the disposal area. It requires a retaining wall, more clean soil and gravel fill, and a paved cap over the disposal area that will be used as parking. The Brownfields Program staff and the developer presented these plans at a public information session on December 9, 2019.

This meeting provided an opportunity for citizens to get an update on the Brownfields redevelopment plans for the property. The meeting consisted of presentations, a question-and-answer period and a listening session. The meeting included a brief history of past events, ongoing activities and the planned long-term cap solution. Attendees had an opportunity to speak and ask questions. 
The meeting focused on the proposed Brownfields redevelopment and long-term asbestos risk management at the property, not the local land-use or zoning provisions related to the project. This meeting did not cover NCDOT roadway project U-5907 or Charlotte Water water-main expansion plan.

You may view the full notice of the public meeting from the NCDEQ here. Presentation available here.

Sampling History

At DEQ Division of Waste Management’s (DWM) request in 2016, the Environmental Protection Agency’s Superfund Emergency Response and Removal Branch oversaw the emergency repair of the breach in the soil cap. Because of reports that in past decades, asbestos-containing material had been removed from the manufacturing location and used as fill at neighboring properties, the EPA inspected properties identified as having asbestos-containing material. Between November 1, 2016 through May 16, 2017, the EPA’s Emergency Response, Removal, Prevention and Preparedness Branch conducted soil sampling at 93 neighboring properties.

Thirty-two residential properties tested above the EPA’s health-based exposure limit. The EPA removed the top one-to-two feet of asbestos-contaminated soil, marked the end of excavation and installed clean fill and sod at those 32 properties. From May 15 through August 22, 2017, the EPA removed approximately 6,204 tons of asbestos-contaminated waste and disposed of it at an EPA-approved landfill. On January 25, 2018, the EPA sent letters to property owners stating the removal work was complete and that “No Further Action” was planned for their properties.

At the same time, DWM staff oversaw the installation of an improved soil cap over the disposal area by the owners of the 301 Depot Street property. This improved cap is a temporary measure until the site is redeveloped through the Brownfields Program to provide for a permanently maintained hard cover.


History of the Site

A history of the development of the Metrolina Warehouse Site is available here.

More Information

Mecklenburg County Polaris - Property Ownership and Land Records System

North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality Site Locator Tool

North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services - Asbestos Hazard Management Information

If you see asbestos-containing material that has been released from the Metrolina Warehouse site or have questions about environmental issues related to the site, please contact the following people:

If you are a utility or a construction company, please contact the following before you dig:

Miguel Alvalle
North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality (NCDEQ)
Division of Waste Management
610 East Center Avenue, Suite 310
Mooresville, NC 28115
Phone: 704-663-1699 

Carolyn Minnich, Brownfields Project Manager
North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality (NCDEQ)
Phone: 704-661-0330

Health Concerns

If you are concerned that you might have been exposed to asbestos and have questions about your health, please contact the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (Division of Public Health):

Beth Dittman
Environmental Program Consultant
Phone: 919-707-5900

Health Assessment Consultation & Education Fact Sheet

Limiting Environmental Exposure

Please contact Doug Wright, Project Manager at the Town of Davidson, at or 704-940-9625 with any questions.