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site remediation program
2001 Brownfields Update

SRP Publications Brownfields Reports 2001

Historic Camden Waterfront Redevelopment Includes Entertainment, Recreation and Residential Projects Bringing New Jobs and Visitors


Campbell’s Field is one the latest brownfield projects along the City of Camden’s waterfront. A minor league baseball team, named the Camden Riversharks, opened its season in 2001 at the facility that features views of the Ben Franklin Bridge and the City of Philadelphia across the Delaware River.

Photo of baseball game at Campbell's Field in Camden, NJ

Redeveloping the City of Camden’s historic industrial waterfront continued to evolve in 2001 with completion of a minor league baseball stadium, college soccer field and community park. These projects compliment previously redeveloped waterfront parcels that now contain the Tweeter Center (formerly Sony Entertainment Center), New Jersey Aquarium and Wiggins Park, a city green space.

The remediation and redevelopment of a 10-acre former industrial facility into a minor league baseball stadium named Campbell’s Field is the largest project south of the Ben Franklin Bridge just across the Delaware River from Philadelphia that has come to fruition in 2001.

The new ballpark involved a $24 million construction project that included $7 million for remediation costs. Prior to the new venture, Campbell’s Field was a vacant, undeveloped parcel of land that historically housed businesses that included the Campbell Soup Company Plant No. 2, Pennsylvania & Reading Rail Road’s Linden Street Freight Station, David Baird & Company’s lumber mill and Eavenson & Sons’ soap manufacturing company.

Another parcel along the northern waterfront area consisted of the 4.5- acre Palko Continental site, which had ceased wood refinishing, limited brass works and production of custom architectural moldings at its facility. Prior to these operations the site was used as a manufacturing facility of asbestos-wound gaskets. The contaminated site existed in a mixed residential/commercial area and there was little space available for public recreation. The site was cleaned up through an effort of Rutgers University, which constructed a university soccer field for its Camden campus and a community park with a grant from NJDEP’s Green Acres Program.

The buildings on the site were demolished, some contamination was removed, but it was not feasible to remove the vast quantity of historic fill. The solution was to construct a cap to prevent human contact with the underlying contamination. The overall construction project cost $5.2 million. What is most unique here is that the cap is composed of, in part, recycled material. The cap itself is approximately 18 inches thick, with multiple layers of stone and fabric. The majority of the site has artificial grass as a final covering. This grass, composed of a combination polyethylene-polypropylene mix is impregnated with approximately two inches of recycled black rubber. The rubber is made of 40,000 tires and sneakers.

With these latest brownfield reuse projects completed at the northern end of the Camden waterfront, other actions underway and the Battleship New Jersey set to anchor nearby, visitation to the area is expected to surpass two million in 2002.

Aerial photo of Camden Aquarium

The Camden Aquarium, top photo, also enjoys a waterfront location south of the new ballpark and is a favorite spot for school children from across the region. In the bottom photo, a view from the eighth floor balcony of the Camden Port Center looking north shows the three-story L-3 Communications building to the right, which has been operational for several years. The historic six-story “Nipper” building, located behind the L-3 structure, is now undergoing a conversion to residential use. The “Nipper” building was the original manufacturing facility for the Victor Talking Machine Company and contains 500,000 square feet. This photo was taken in the early stages of construction of Campbell’s Field.

Photo of view from the Camden Port Center

 

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