Microfab Site Information

Update: July 22, 2021

In 2016, Amesbury City Council passed a resolution supporting the cleanup of the former Microfab Inc. site at 104 Haverhill Road (Bill 2016-033). The 14-acre site, formerly owned by Microfab Inc. was used to manufacture printed circuit boards from 1967 – 1984. At that time, the site was declared a hazardous waste disposals site by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). Microfab soon abandoned the site and declared bankruptcy. Investigations have taken place to determine the owner of the property, and none has been found.

The site remained empty and abandoned, and in 2003 MassDEP conducted a study estimating that it would cost between $1.5 million and $3.5 million to clean the site. The site is fenced off and is currently maintained by DEP to prevent access and exposure to the contamination. MassDEP has spent over $2 million on site assessment and remediation activities, including the installation of a groundwater recovery and treatment system that operated until 2012. In August 2017, the former Microfab site was placed on the EPA’s Superfund program list, which investigates and cleans up some of the most complex, uncontrolled or abandoned hazardous waste sites in order to make the land usable again. To our knowledge, no work has been done on the site since 2017. 

The EPA and Nobis Engineering re-visited the site in July 2021 to investigate next steps in the cleanup. They found evidence of trespassing on the site, and will work to add No Trespassing signs as well as educational signage about the dangers of the site. We ask everyone to stay off the property while mitigation is happening, as it is a hazardous waste site and could negatively impact people’s health and safety if they are on the property without proper approvals.

EPA's next steps for remediation include;

  • planning for important hydrogeology field work, which will focus on investigating and characterizing source area(s) at the site which contribute to shallow and deeper bedrock groundwater contamination.
  • mapping contamination underground to delineate the extent of the contaminants along the border of the Boston North Technology Park property.
  • study the large wetland area located between the Microfab property and the Middle Road/Erin Road residential areas, and fill in soil and sediment data gaps by conducting further sampling activities.
  • conducting a human health and ecological risk assessments, and finally a feasibility study to evaluate potential remedial alternatives (i.e. cleanup actions) for the Site.