Moran Frame Document Library

Although Burlington Electric Department did an excellent job decommissioning the coal-fired Moran electric generating plant in 1986, some environmental contamination remained in and around the building.  The completion of the first phase or redevelopment at the Moran Frame also completed the comprehensive clean-up of the site. Documents related to the assessment and clean up of the site can be found below.

Read about the history of the site and past redevelopment efforts in our historical booklet: Fearless Relook at Moran Electric - The (Re)generation of the Moran Plant

Since the transfer of the Moran Plant from Burlington Electric to the City Council, many proposals have been crafted for adaptive re-use for public benefit. A Renaissance Center for Science and the Arts was proposed, but lacked support and fundraising capacity. The ECHO Center considered and rejected the Moran site, and a proposal to relocate the Discovery Children’s Museum to Moran failed to come to fruition. Burlington Parks and Recreation considered a recreation center on the waterfront north of Moran, but concluded that the cost of construction and the regular subsidies required to operate such a facility were beyond the means of the City. The idea of a baseball stadium was advanced, but it became clear that a stadium did not fit on the site.

A Request for Letters of Interest in 1993 yielded several proposals, all with inadequate funding or programming plans.  The City issued a second request for proposals in 1995, and a proposal by UVM’s Fleming Museum was selected.  After several years of planning, the Fleming chose to not move forward, instead turning their energy to further develop on UVM’s main campus. 

The reasons for past proposal failures vary: it can be argued that they have been either too extravagant, costly or unrealistic in terms of site conditions, design and engineering, development costs and parking, and/or involved unrealistic operating income projections. 

The Moran building is over 50 years old, a threshold that triggers the inquiry into historical significance.  The Vermont Division for Historic Preservation provided Burlington’s Department of Planning & Zoning a $4,000 grant to examine the history of power generation in Burlington and the historic values of several structures on Burlington’s waterfront, including Moran. 

On September 13, 2010, after consideration by the Parks, Arts & Culture Committee; Community Development & Neighborhood Revitalization Committee; and the Board of Finance, the City Council resolved to formally submit a nomination of the Moran Municipal Generating Station to the State of Vermont State Historic Preservation Officer (SHPO) and to the National Park Service for inclusion in the National Register of Historic Places. Click here to review the National Register of Historic Places Nomination for Moran.

The Burlington Historic Preservation Review Committee (BHPRC) reviewed this nomination at their meeting on October 12, 2010, and unanimously recommended this property for inclusion on the National Register to the State [BHPRC Recommendation] The Vermont Advisory Council on Historic Preservation recommended this property for inclusion on the National Register. 

The Moran Municipal Generating Station was listed on the National Register of Historic places on December 17, 2010. 

Interpretive Panels

Do you have questions about this project? Contact Samantha Dunn, Assistant Director of Community Works, CEDO, at sdunn@burlingtonvt.gov