East Penn acquires former Caloric site

By The Reading Eagle Company

East Penn Manufacturing Co. Inc., near Lyons, has purchased the Maulfair Medical Center building at 403 N. Main St., Topton.
According to documents filed with the Berks County recorder of deeds, the price paid was $1.95 million.

Daniel R. Langdon, East Penn’s president, said the property is contiguous to the company’s distribution facility.
Langdon said East Penn likely will use the property for office space, but has no firm plans for it at this point.

The property, on about two acres, was a part of the former Caloric Corp. , which closed in July 1991 after more than a century in the borough. Caloric was an appliance manufacturer.

Langdon said East Penn over the years has acquired most of the former Caloric property from Raytheon Corp., which bought Caloric in 1967.

“We have substantially all of it,” Langdon said, adding that East Penn made its initial purchase of Caloric property in 1996.

That was the same year that Conrad G. Maulfair Jr. and his wife, Coleen M. Maulfair, of Maulfair Medical Center purchased the Main Street property.

It also was the same year that the Department of Environmental Resources released Raytheon from liability following its cleanup of the site.

In the 1990s following the plant shutdown, Raytheon spent more than $7 million on the cleanup.

Contaminants included chromium deposits in the soil and PCE, or perchloroethylene, in the groundwater. Both are considered cancer-causing chemicals. Underground storage tanks also were removed.
Kevin Sunday, a spokesman for DEP’s southcentral regional office, said the property was cleared for groundwater, as well as for metals (including chromium and copper) and chlorinated solvents that had been in the water.

Langdon said East Penn conducted an environmental study of the property before buying it.

Coleen Maulfair said the medical center is still in the Main Street property and is leasing space from East Penn.

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