Former Fishercraft Building Demolition Goes Out for Bid

A longtime eyesore and health hazard will be coming down soon.

This week the Town of Derry began soliciting bids for the demolishing and environmental abatement of 19 Elm St., the building formerly housing Fishercraft. A pre-bid meeting will be held Friday, April 8 at the site, and bids are due April 22.

While the building tested positive for asbestos and the asbestos must be removed before demolition, its levels of lead paint are low enough so as not to classify it as hazardous waste.

The property is Tax Map 29, Lot 28 and is PID 10540. It encompasses 1.69 acres, with a 34,000-square-foot building and is zoned Medium High Density Residential.

In a preliminary report on asbestos and lead, ATC Group Services of Manchester wrote that staff member Scott Drinko did testing on the property on Feb. 16, Feb. 26 and March 25. Drinko’s sampling revealed the presence of asbestos in the door caulking, window glazing, three sections of floor tiles, stair railings and main roof.

“Asbestos-containing material” or ACM is defined as any material containing more than 1 percent of any type of asbestos fibers. According to the report, ACM is required to be removed prior to any form of demolition.

In addition, any material not identified as non-asbestos is “suspect” and should be considered as containing asbestos unless future sampling reveals it to be otherwise.

The report stated that the asbestos-containing materials must be removed and disposed of by a New Hampshire-licensed asbestos contractor.

The presence of lead is tested by the Toxicity Characteristic Leaching Procedure, or TCLP. According to the New Hampshire Code of Administrative Rules and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, lead-containing materials may be disposed of in two ways: as solid waste, along with general construction debris, which requires minimal handling, transportation and landfill disposal; or hazardous waste, which must be disposed of at an approved waste site, reclamation facility or incinerator. The lead paint at 19 Elm St. tested below the reportable limit of 0.4 mg per liter and will not be classified as hazardous.

The property was one of 39 tax-deeded parcels presented to the then-Town Council for disposal. Properties were vetted by the Planning Board, Conservation Commission, Public Works and Heritage Commission before going to the Council. The Council determined to keep several properties for conservation or public works purposes. The properties not retained by the town were auctioned Jan. 30.

In the Dec. 15, 2015 Council meeting, Public Works Director Michael Fowler brought concerns to the Council including code violations and a faulty sprinkler system.

In the Jan. 5, 2016 meeting, the Council voted unanimously to have the building at 19 Elm St. torn down. They voted a $150,000 supplemental appropriation from the Land and Buildings Capital Reserve Fund.

While some Councilors and community members floated different ideas for the property, including a public park or senior housing, the consensus was to get the building down as soon as possible and then discuss the future of the land.

The structure at 19 Elm St. was built in 1909 and operated as a shoe factory owned by astronaut Alan Shepard’s grandparents. The property changed hands multiple times, housing several shoe factories before being purchased by Fishercraft. It later housed a salsa company and antique store before being deeded to the town.

For more information, contact Alan Cote, Superintendent of Operations, at [email protected] or fax questions to him at 432-6130.


Caption: Began soliciting bids for the demolishing and environmental abatement of 19 Elm St.