December 2013

Download this layer (2 MB)
.Zip file includes 24 shapefiles, the DAT dbf table
and nine ArcGIS 10.0 LYR files

Please Note:

The “DEP Solid Waste Facilities” data structure was modified in the December 2011 release. This release conforms to the 2011 data structure.

Solid Waste Combustion Facilities, Handling Facilities, Transfer Stations and Compost Sites are no longer represented as features associated with solid waste polygons. These site-assigned or registered Solid Waste activities are now represented as point features (BWP_PT_*), included here. Their data structure mimics that of the BWP Facilities Datalayer. Please see the Attributes and Spatial Views sections below for additional information.


The Solid Waste Land Disposal Datalayer was compiled by the Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) to track the locations of land disposal of solid waste. This statewide datalayer contains the majority of locations currently regulated under MassDEP's solid waste regulations (310 CMR 16.000 & 19.000).

Land Disposal refers to an operation established in accordance with a valid site assignment for the disposal of solid waste into or on land (Landfill), or a location for disposal of solid waste from one or more sources which is not established or maintained pursuant to a valid site assignment or permit (Dumping Ground).

Polygons in the datalayer include both landfills and dumping grounds.  Data are stored in ArcSDE as two layers – SW_LD_POLY (polygons) and SW_LD_PT (point feature class, with one point for each polygon).

Please note, only a small fraction of the land disposal sites are active landfills.  In addition, this datalayer does not contain all land disposal sites known to MassDEP. The MassDEP Bureau of Waste Site Cleanup and EPA Superfund Program manage former land disposal sites which fall under their regulatory purview and the MassGIS Land Use datalayer has waste site and mining classifications that may represent land disposal sites not found in the solid waste datalayer.


The MassDEP Land Disposal of Solid Waste (formerly DEP Solid Waste Facilities) datalayer was originally digitized from USGS Quadrangle maps (1:25,000) filed as part of the siting (310 CMR 16.00) or operating permit (310 CMR 19.00) requirements for landfills. It has been updated as described below.


1994 and earlier: DEP regional office files were searched for locus maps and site plans which designated the location of solid waste facilities. In some cases the footprint of the facility was located on the map; in other instances a general location was noted. These were hand-drawn onto a master set of USGS topographic quadrangle maps from which the datalayer was digitized. When possible, point locations were updated with polygons from MassGIS 1985 land use data. Point locations were buffered to reflect the reported acreage (when insufficient data was available, 29.9 acres was used).

1997-2008: Locus maps and site plans from regional and Boston office files were automated directly into Arc/Info while using scanned USGS quads &/or digital orthophotos as background images. Point locations were buffered as described above; several of these point locations were collected using global positioning system technology (GPS). Several polygons were copied from the Protected and Recreational Open Space and Land Use (2005) Datalayers.

2009 and beyond: GPS, Parcel data, Pictometry, current/historical Topographic and Orthophoto imagery are being used to refine existing polygons and map new ones.


The data structure for combustion facilities, handling/transfer facilities and compost sites mimics that of the BWP Facilities Datalayer. Feature attributes associated with both points and polygons include:
RO_ACCT LONG – 4/10 Site ID from Facility Master File (FMF) Database
SITE_NAME C – 45 / 45 Site Name from FMF Database
ADDRESS C – 38 / 38 Site Address from FMF Database
TOWN C – 21 / 21 MassGIS Municipality name
REGION T  – 6 / 6 MassDEP Region abbreviation (in views, not in attrib. table)
MassDEP maintains operational status, location, operation type, capacity, and contacts in its Facility Master File (FMF) database. An extract of Solid Waste data from FMF is available on MassDEP's website:, under the heading “Massachusetts Solid Waste Facilities Master List”. Facility information is linked to the GIS datalayer via the RO_ACCT. Selected land disposal polygon attributes shown below are included where appropriate, for ease of use.
ACRES DOUBLE Acreage of polygon representing landfill/dumping ground
CAP_STATUS C – 10 / 10 LF: Capped, Excavated, Incomplete; DG: Complete, Incomplete
CATGRPGIS C – 20 / 20 Land Disposal – LF (landfill) or - DG (dumping ground)
LF_LINER C – 10 / 10 LF: Lined, Not lined, unknown; DG: N/A
STATUS C – 10 / 10 Active, Inactive, Closed
SW_ID C – 10 / 10 Solid Waste Facility ID (historical identifier may be NULL for some records)
TYPE_OPER C – 10 / 10 Contact Organization Type: District, Federal, Municipal, Private, State
TYPE_RSP C – 10 / 10 Responsible Party Org Type: District, Federal, Individual, Municipal, Private, State
WASTE_TYPE C – 10 / 10 Type of waste deposited: Ash, C&D Waste, MSW, Sludge, Tires, Woodwaste
Waste Types defined:
ASH Residual from combustion, includes MSW, oil, coal, & wood ash.
C&D WASTE Construction & Demolition Waste.
MSW Municipal Solid Waste
SLUDGE Residual from treatment of gasses or fluids, includes industrial & water treatment sludges.
TIRES Whole, cut, shredded, or chipped car or truck tires.
WOODWASTE Trees, brush, sawdust, chips, bark and shavings, excluding milled lumber

Spatial Views

Land Disposal Operations

Using the polygon layer SW_LD_POLY and SW_LD_POLY_DAT table, 15 spatial views (selected sets of features) were created in ArcSDE. These views are distributed as separate shapefiles along with the full layers and tables in the download at the top of this page. The views are named as follows:




Solid Waste Operations other than Land Disposal

Using an in-house development point layer and MassDEP Facility Master File Regulated Objects table, seven spatial views (selected sets of features) were created in ArcSDE. These views are distributed as separate shapefiles in the download at the top of this page. The views are as follows:

BWP_PT_COMBUSTION  (active combustion facilities with resource recovery)
BWP_PT_COMBUSTION_HISTORIC  (inactive, historic incinerators)
(general permit composting operations)
BWP_PT_HF_CD_PROC  (handling facilities: construction & demolition processors)
 (handling facilities: small transfer stations < 50 tons/day)
(handling facilities: large transfer stations, 50 tons/day or more/day)
(handling facilities: woodwaste, compost, other)

In addition to the feature attributes associated with points and polygons defined above, point views also include the identifiers FAC_ID and ROOT_ID which can be used to associate the features with other BWP point layers, including the BWP Major Facilities Datalayer.

Location Documentation

Land Disposal location metadata are stored within the SW_LD_PT and SW_LD_POLY attribute tables. See DEP Standards for GIS Data for details. Polygon methods of data input are additionally coded as follows:
DIG-METHOD Description Number of Polygons
F Footprint digitized from USGS quadrangle or digital orthophoto 463
P Point digitized from USGS quadrangle or digital orthophoto 48
PAR Polygon(s) copied from MassGIS Assessor Parcels Datalayer 45
UTM Point located by UTM coordinates 32
GPS Perimeter or front gate points collected with GPS 3
LU Polygon copied from MassGIS Land Use Datalayer 4
OS Polygon copied from MassGIS Protected and Recreational Open Space Datalayer 1


The MassDEP-BWP-Business Reporting, Data and Fiscal Operations Division is maintaining this datalayer.

In 2011, the datalayer was redesigned and feature level attribution increased.  Land Disposal sites continue to be represented by polygons.  Solid Waste Operations other than Land Disposal are now represented as points rather than associated features of a polygon. Edits as follows:

  • Active and historical COMBUSTION facilities, TRANSFER and registered COMPOST sites represented as points
  • Active HANDLING/TRANSFER point views replace TRANSFER:
    1. BWP_PT_HF_CD_PROC (construction and demolition processors),
    2. BWP_PT_HF_TRAN_SM (small transfer stations),
    3. BWP_PT_HF_TRANSFER (large transfer stations),
    4. BWP_PT_HF_WWCOOTH (wood waste, compost and/or other waste handling operations)

2013 feature/attribute edits as follows:

  • 52  new polys
  • 67 polys redrawn
  • 28 polygon ID/metadata edits


Last Updated 3/7/2014