hanscom field/hanscom air force base


Hanscom Air Force Base/Hanscom Field site covers approximately 1,120 acres in a light industrial area of eastern Massachusetts. The site occupies land in the Towns of Bedford, Concord, Lexington, and Lincoln. The Naval Weapons Industrial Reserve Plant and Raytheon research facility are located due north of Hanscom Air Force Base/Hanscom Field. In 1942, the military began using a public airfield at the site that had been built the previous year. In 1952, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts transferred 396 acres and leased 641 acres of the land to the Air Force. The Commonwealth retained the remaining 83 acres for its own use. Military flight operations ceased in 1973 and in August 1974, the airfield reverted to state control and was renamed L.G. Hanscom Field. It is currently operated by the Massachusetts Port Authority (MASSPORT) as a civilian airport. The primary mission of Hanscom AFB, on the 396 acres owned by the Air Force, is to support the Electronic Systems Center of the Air Force Material Command. A total of 22 possible sources of contamination have been identified on the land the Air Force has owned or leased. These include former fire training, disposal, underground storage tank, and other spill sites. In the spring of 1983, three production wells for the Town of Bedford, located « mile northwest of Hanscom Air Force Base, were shut down after volatile organic compounds were detected above drinking water standards. Since the spring of 1991, contaminated groundwater located within the vicinity of the airfield on Hanscom Field has been extracted and treated; however, investigations conducted, both by the Air Force and the Town of Bedford, have been inconclusive in terms of identifying a specific source of contamination that is the cause for the production well shutdown.

Hazardous Ranking Score

50 / 100

A score of 28.5 or higher qualifies a site for the Superfund National Priority List.

Regional Contact

Region 1
Phone: (888) 372-7341
Fax: (617) 918-0101

Outside New England:
(617) 918-1111

Contact Region



Site Inspection
Preliminary Assessment
Final Listing On NPL

Contaminants & Health Effects

      Endocrine Disrupter
      Reproductive Toxin
      Persistent, bioaccumulative and toxic


        African American
        American Indian and Alaska Native
        Native Hawaiian


        People living
        within a 1 mile radius


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        Occupied homes

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