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Happy Earth Day 🌎! From Summit Brewing!

Breweries have been a part of American culture for centuries. From the early days of our country, beer has been a staple of social gatherings, and the brewing industry has thrived. However, with the rise of industrialization, breweries have also been associated with environmental pollution. That’s why the story of the brewery in St. Paul is so unique and inspiring.

It all started when the Port Authority approached Mark with an offer to keep the brewery in St. Paul. However, the land was polluted with petroleum waste, and there were fears about how the brewery would look on such a site. The team got to work, removing the Texaco silos and excavating down to the bedrock to transfer the waste to incineration. Upon excavating, a shale layer was discovered that acted as a natural preventive barrier for groundwater. To preserve the protective shale layer, a bentonite clay curtain was installed on the site to help ensure that construction and plans didn’t affect the groundwater. The result was a successful restoration of the land, which looked much better than at first.

The Crosby Park Area’s first project had to have special construction attributes. The basement would penetrate the shale area and into sandstone. Now, there was a concern about petroleum pollution getting in via construction. There were lots of talks and planning to make sure construction and plans didn’t affect the groundwater. So, the brewery was designed with some special construction techniques to ensure not only its success but to make sure the clean groundwater that was protected from pollution wouldn’t be affected. Under the brewery, a perforated pipe was laid into the rock to form a passive ventilation system. The team never had to use a passive ventilation system. After two years, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency removed water monitors because everything looked good, and there was no pollution even after the brewery was added.

Summit Brewing’s success in St. Paul is a testament to the power of sustainable business practices and environmental restoration. It shows that with the right focus, effort, and innovation, it’s possible to turn a polluted and abandoned site into a thriving business that contributes to the local economy. The team’s commitment to protecting the environment while also creating jobs and contributing to the community is a model for others to follow.

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