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PRESS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE DISTRIBUTION
Kara Raftery (Zupke) | Communications and Special Projects Manager
City of Leavenworth
509.548.5275 ext. 136 | [email protected]

THE CITY OF LEAVENWORTH MOVES FORWARD WITH THE ACQUISITION OF THE FORMER CASCADE QUICK LUBE & CAR WASH PROPERTY FOR $1.9 MILLION

LEAVENWORTH, WA, July 10, 2024 – Yesterday evening the Leavenworth City Council approved the acquisition of the former Cascade Quick Lube & Car Wash located at 1451 US Highway 2 for $1.9 million. The City will enter into a purchase and sale agreement with Willkommen, LLC, to acquire the property with an early August closing date.

The City expressed interest in acquiring the property in 2018. At that time, the City had the property appraised and conducted a Phase I Environmental Site Assessment (ESA). The City Council chose not to pursue the acquisition during that point in time based on known contamination of a BNSF-owned property across US Highway 2, known as Glacier Park.

Following a space needs assessment in 2023, it was determined that the City would need to acquire property to not only expand its public works campus but also add capacity to the existing wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) to meet the future demand.

The former car wash property sits directly adjacent to the current public works campus and is an ideal location for expansion. However, the property is located immediately across the street from a known cleanup site, Glacier Park. Glacier Park was heavily impacted by petroleum contamination, and cleanup efforts have been ongoing since the early 1990s. The City took into consideration that there was the potential for petroleum contamination to have traveled to the property of interest. In addition, it was unknown whether polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), which are extremely hazardous, were present at the property as some car wash chemicals historically contained PAHs.

Wanting to explore the feasibility of purchasing the property, and concurrently determine if the property was contaminated, the City pursued a Toxics Cleanup Integrated Planning Grant (IPG) with the Washington State Department of Ecology (Ecology).

In 2024, Ecology granted the City $200,000 in funding to assess the level of environmental contamination at the property in support of the potential property acquisition and planning efforts for the public works campus expansion to facilitate increased wastewater treatment capacity. Utilizing the awarded IPG funds, the City performed a Phase II ESA and a hazardous materials survey of the existing structures onsite.

The survey confirmed the absence of asbestos in the building materials. The conclusions from the subsurface assessment activities during the Phase II ESA site investigation derived that the soil and groundwater at the property had not been impacted by the nearby cleanup site (i.e., Glacier Park) or by historical operations (i.e., auto repair, car wash, etc.) and no further action was recommended.

“The grant from the Department of Ecology was a key aspect of this acquisition,” said City Administrator Matthew Selby. “Knowing that the property is uncontaminated made the decision to acquire this strategic parcel an easy one for the City Council.”

With the acquisition in the queue, additional planning efforts funded by the grant can be pursued in earnest.

If you have questions, or for more information, please contact Kara Raftery (Zupke) at [email protected].

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