Community Involvement Plan: Chapman University

by anacondawiresite1

 Anaconda Wire Site Orange, CA

Purpose of Community Involvement Plan:

This Community Involvement Plan summarizes how we plan to involve and inform stakeholders and interested parties about the contamination at the Anaconda Wire Site. This plan is Chapman University’s “road map” for how we plan to work with the community on the hazardous waste cleanup at the site. It also outlines the methods we will use to keep the public up to date on our work, and opportunities for the public to become involved in future investigation and cleanup activities. The plan can be updated at any time as we receive new information. Please call (949) 268-8530, Community Involvement Coordinator, to share your ideas and concerns.

Community Involvement Goals:

  • Provide useful and timely information on site activities and progress
  • Provide opportunities for public participation and comment
  • Establish open communication, responding to questions and concerns as they arise
  • Evaluate how well community involvement activities work and make changes as needed

How We Will Keep You Informed:


*added 4/2/2014*

For additional information, please contact Kris Olsen, Vice President of Campus Planning & Operations, One University Dr., Orange, CA 92866, or at or  714 744 7880.


We will use many tools to keep you informed and involved about the hazardous waste cleanup work on the Anaconda Wire Site. These may include:

E-Mail and Telephone Contacts:

If you have questions about this site, this plan, or would like additional information, please call, write, or e-mail:

Mark Hickner

Community Involvement Coordinator
c/o KTGY Group
17922 Fitch Irvine, CA 92614
(949) 268-8530
Fax: (949) 221-6251

Jason Gavin

Project Manager
c/o KTGY Group
17922 Fitch Irvine, CA 92614
(949) 567-3459
Fax: (949) 221-6251

Fact Sheets: Fact sheets summarizing key information will be developed as needed and updated at least annually.

Public Notices: Public notices in local publications will be used initially to inform the public about the website and in the future to inform the public about major site activities with detailed information to be made available on the website.

Website: Project information including fact sheets and background information can be found at the following Website:

Meetings: Meetings will be held initially and periodically with representatives from the City of Orange, local community organizations and university faculty, staff and student leaders.

What Agencies Have Oversight of the Cleanup Efforts?:

  • Orange County Health Care Agency (OCHCA)
  • California Regional Water Quality Control Board, Santa Ana Region (RWQCB)

About the Anaconda Wire Site:

Before breaking ground on the proposed Filmmakers Village project, Chapman University contracted with an outside company to evaluate environmental conditions underneath the Anaconda Wire Site. The testing revealed the presence of chemicals beneath part of the site, which was originally planned for student housing, and included underground soil gas that had migrated across Maple Street. The chemicals appear to be left over from long-past industrial activity at the property, where a company called Anaconda Wire & Cable formerly operated for several decades. The University had been advised that there were no significant environmental issues prior to its purchase of the property.

Above ground testing of air—including inside Marion Knott Studios—was conducted as a precaution. The air quality tests were consistent with typical outdoor and indoor air quality measurements in Southern California. There were no indications that the underground conditions at and near the Anaconda Wire Site are affecting above-ground air quality including air inside the Marion Knott Studios.

While tests reveal the presence of industrial chemicals in the groundwater underneath the Anaconda Wire Site, data from March 2011 does not suggest that industrial chemicals have reached the local drinking water supply wells. Drinking water for the campus comes from the City of Orange Public Works Water Division, which tests the water supply regularly for safety.

We are coordinating with the appropriate environmental oversight agencies to determine whether additional testing of underground conditions is necessary and what actions will be needed to remediate those conditions. The agencies are requiring further characterization of the soil and groundwater at the site; we will address those conditions when the most appropriate measures are determined.

After due consideration, we have decided that the wisest course of action is to alter our plans regarding Filmmakers Village. For example, Chapman University is now exploring other locations for student housing near Dodge College. This housing likely will be designed to accommodate the same number of students originally planned for Filmmakers Village. At the same time, we are still planning to build a parking structure and redevelop the historic structure on the southern half of the Anaconda Wire Site. That historic building will house new digital arts classrooms and offices for Chapman faculty.

As part of redevelopment of the Anaconda Wire Site, non-historic portions of the existing building on-site will be demolished and removed from the property. This demolition is necessary in order to allow access to existing environmental conditions underneath the Anaconda Wire Site. The demolition activities will include some remediation. For example, as hot spots are uncovered during demolition, the University will need to address them as part of the Soil Contingency Plan developed pursuant to agency directive for implementation during demolition. Such action will not address the full remediation of the site — but rather, just any localized hot spots on or near the surface that are discovered during demolition.

As we develop more definitive information about these and other plans for Chapman’s growth, we will share them with you here at