The ground, at Stane Gardens in Shotts, was fenced off after contamination was discovered by North Lanarkshire Council in February 2011.
There were fears that the clean-up bill could exceed £4 million, but the figure will be closer to £1.4m.
Contaminants found at the site were consistent with it having previously been the location of an iron works and a tar factory.
The council has agreed a programme of work with the Scottish Environment Protection Agency to clean up the site.
As well as removing topsoil, which is expected to be completed by March, a new reed bed and run-off will be created to alleviate any flooding issues.
The second part of the remediation – to be funded jointly by the council and SEPA – will see South Calder River, which runs via a culvert beneath the site, reinstated above ground to provide a water feature for Stane Gardens.
The final design for the site will include riverside walkways.