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Editorial: Answers will come on UMore land

Late last month the University of Minnesota held a meeting to discuss the presence of pollution on the UMore Park property it owns in Rosemount. The property in question, which has been home over the years to a World War II munitions plant, industrial businesses and agricultural research sites, among other uses, has long been a sore spot in the city. And now, as the university makes plans to build a housing development the size of a good-sized suburb on the land, some residents are looking for answers they feel have been a long time coming.

Some frustration boiled over at that meeting, and that is understandable. Some of the uses to which that property have been put over the years lend themselves to creating pollutants. There are residents who are convinced they could lead you directly to where the worst of it is. Whether that's true is an open question right now, but the perception is there. And so, in concentrations great or small, are the pollutants.

That is why studies like the one the U of M has completed are important. It seems certain there is pollution on the UMore property, and it will be there whatever happens with the land. Better, then, to have an idea of what is out there. Better to have a plan for addressing the issues that arise.

We understand why people are getting upset with the process. This is a big issue, it's been around for a long time and it doesn't lend itself to quick answers or quick solutions. But it is in the university's interest to make sure it does a thorough job in both identifying and addressing problems. Building homes on polluted ground would not go unnoticed. It would come to light eventually, and that would cause problems for everyone involved.

Frustrations aside, we expect answers to come eventually.