Environmental impact of Hudson transfer station project discussed


Environmental impact of Hudson transfer station project discussed
Once the new transfer station is constructed, its capacity will be 850 tons a day. The station is managed by B-P Trucking. (Photo/Jesse Kucewicz)

HUDSON – Since June 2023, B-P Trucking has engaged in a process to relocate and expand the capacity of the Hudson Transfer Station.

The existing station, which is located 300 Cox St., can process 350 tons per day of materials, and after the successful construction of the new transfer station, the capacity will be 850 tons per day.

B-P Trucking, the family-owned and operated waste management and recycling company, has managed the Hudson Transfer Station since 1999.

Helping the trucking company are Sanborn, Head and Associates, a solid waste engineering company that is leading the permitting efforts; Epsilon Associates, an environmental engineering and consulting company with extensive knowledge of the Massachusetts Environmental Policy Act (MEPA); and Vanasse and Associates, a transportation, engineering and consulting company.

On April 25, Epsilon hosted a question-and-answer session about the draft environmental impact report that was recently completed as well as other aspects of the project itself, like traffic patterns and noise impacts.

“Our purpose this evening is to describe the project to everyone and update the public on its status and the MEPA review process,” Senior engineer at Epsilon Alex Brooks said.

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Brooks said B-P Trucking is looking to relocate the station operations further into the 72-acre parcel the Department of Public Works and Police Department also occupy.

Brooks noted that the town will terminate the operation of the existing station once the new one is completed, and it will be retained by the Department of Public Works for its own use.

Brooks said the new transfer station will be 53,000 square feet and located on 13 acres of the town-owned property on which it currently resides. The facility will take and process municipal solid waste, construction materials and recyclable plastic and paper and will continue to allow residents to drop off municipal solid waste.

The increase in additional waste processing capacity will have the impact of 207 new trucks per day, which will follow mapped out routes, and to minimize local traffic disruption all semi-trailer trucks were routed toward the interstate highways with an exit onto Cox Street, according to the draft report.

The permitting process is expected to continue into 2025 with the operation of the new facility estimated to start in 2026.

There are two thresholds for MEPA review, he said. One is the creation of five or more acres of impervious areas, and the other is the introduction of new capacity or expansion for the combustion or disposal of any quantity of solid waste, or processing of 50 or more tons per day of solid waste.

The project would require a superseding order of conditions from the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection as well as the authorizations to construct and to operate a large handling facility, according to the impact report document.

Residents weigh in

Several residents had questions on the project.

Cynthia Young asked what the decision-making process was for expanding the station. Stephen Wright, principal engineer for Sanborn, said it was “a not unusual circumstance where there’s a capacity increase request.”

It can happen at existing facilities, he noted, or expanding facilities to improve the overall operations. It was in response to the “changes that have happened in the solid waste regulations” since the transfer station was built in the late 1980s, Wright said. The infrastructure can become outdated and need to be updated to meet regulatory demands in terms of material management.

One benefit is that it will move the station “farther away from Cox Street” and improve the operations of the site, according to Wright.

Jody Zolli asked about the benefit for Hudson. She added that the transfer station would be “huge” and wanted to know how the town and not only B-P Trucking would benefit from the expansion.

Wright noted the draft environmental impact report shows what types of materials will be dropped off and how they are separating residential and commercial traffic. They are “trying to keep everything in one area so residents can break off” from the non-residential customers, Wright said.

He said, “The residents can peel off, if you will, and into this area.”

President of B-P Trucking Gary DePaolo said there will be more efficient traffic flow on the site.

Zolli said there would be twice as many truck trips and wanted to know that the town would see a benefit for being the host of the larger station. A.J. Jablonowski of Epsilon Associates pointed to the draft report, which states, “One of the project’s principal objectives is to improve the safe and convenient use of the facility by Hudson residents.”

He said, “The proposed facility will greatly enhance waste reduction, diversion and material recovery capabilities at the site.”

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