Asarco Demolition

Facility Site ID: 214 Cleanup Site ID: 537

Tacoma Asarco Superfund Site Background

Former Asarco Smokestack
Former Asarco Smokestack
For nearly 100 years, the Asarco Company operated a copper smelter in Tacoma.  The 90 acre facility sat on the border of north Tacoma and Ruston, along the waterfront.  Air emissions and other smelter contaminants polluted the property, the surrounding neighborhoods, and a 1,000 square mile area called the Tacoma Smelter Plume.

In the early 1980s, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) began a Superfund cleanup of the site.  To manage this large and complex cleanup, EPA divided the cleanup into four "operable units." The Asarco Demolition site is one of these units.

For further history and photos of the Asarco smelter, visit History Link.  Unofficial videos of the January 17, 1993 stack demolition can be found online.

Asarco Building Demolition

In 1987 and 1988, Asarco removed many of the most highly contaminated buildings from the property.  Before tearing down a building, walls were washed to remove surface contamination.  Afterwards, debris were sorted and either disposed of or recycled, if the materials were clean.

1993 Smokestack Demolition

On January 17, 1993, Asarco imploded its 562 foot tall smokestack.  After demolition, Asarco levels the bricks, covered them with a plastic liner and soil, and planted the area with grass.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency oversaw cleanup of the former smokestack area.  Soil in the area meets cleanup standards for residential land and is now a residential development called "Stack Hill." 
No documents found.
There may be more documents related to this site. To obtain documents not available electronically, you will need to make a public records request.

Places to see print documents

  • Headquarters
    300 Desmond Dr SE
    Lacey, 98503
    Please schedule an appointment to view print documents at this location.

Contaminants 9

Contaminant Type
Surface Water
Other Contaminant - Base/Neutral/Acid Organics C C
Halogenated Organics - Halogenated Organics C
Metals - Metals Priority Pollutants C C C C
Metals - Metals - Other C C C
Non-Halogenated Organics - Phenolic Compounds C
Non-Halogenated Organics - Non-Halogenated Solvents C
Non-Halogenated Organics - Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons C C
Other Contaminant - Conventional Contaminants, Organic C
Other Contaminant - Asbestos C
Confirmed Above Cleanup Levels
Below Cleanup Levels
This contaminant list was based on our best information at the time it was entered. It may not reflect current conditions at the site.