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The Impact of the West Lake Landfill Superfund Site On Surrounding Home Vales

Located at 13570 St Charles Rock Road in Bridgeton Missouri is a 200-acre landfill known as the West Laek Landfill Superfund site which has been the center of controversy and a source of frequent headlines over the past few years.  The reason it has garnered so much attention is becuase of health concerns related to radioactive waste at the site.  The source of the radioactive waste goes back to 1973 when soil that was mixed iwth leached barium sulfate was used to cover the landfill.  The radioactive waste came from a nearby storage and processing facility located at 9200 Latty Avenue in Hazelwod.

Over the past several years, residents in the area surrounding the West Lake site have expressed concerns and made claims that the have been afflicted by illnesses that they think are a result of the nuclear waste at the site.  There have been numerous public hearings and, earlier this month, the EPA announced their proposed plan to remove some of the radioactive materials from the site.

In addition to the claims of health issues, residents have raised concerns about the impact on their property values as a result of the issues and possible risks of living near the West Lake site.  Therefore, I decided to take a look at home values of the homes in the area to see how the market in the immediate proximity has fared.

As the chart below illustrates, the median price per foot of homes within a 2-mile radius of the site that have sold during the past 5 years was relatively flat from 2014 through 2016, then incraased 5.8% from 2016 to 2017.  Thus far in 2018 there have been two home sales close at a median price per foot of $120 per foot, an increase of about 12% from 2017.

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Home Sales Within 2 Mile Radius of West Lake Landfill – Jan 2013 Through Feb 2018

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Home Sales Within 2 Mile Radius of West Lake Landfill - Jan 2013 Through Feb 2018

To put things in perspective as well as compare the home price performance in the West Lake area to the overall Bridgeton area, I created the combined chart below.  As you can see, there doesn’t appear to be a difference in home appreciation in the West Lake area compared with the overall Bridgeton area.  In fact, thus far in 2018, the West Lake area is off to a better start than the overall Bridgeton market.

Bridgeton vs West Lake Area Home Sales – Past 5 Years

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Bridgeton vs West Lake Area Home Sales - Past 5 Years

 

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