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Tecumseh Phase I Brownfield Cleanup Program Site

Site Number C915197

Fact Sheet - December 2011

Aerial view of former Bethlehem Steel property, site of the Tecumseh Phase I project, prior to windmill construction

Remedy Proposed for Brownfield Site Contamination; Public Comment Period Announced

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) is reviewing cleanup documents relative to the Tecumseh Phase I Business Park site ("site"). See map for site location. NYSDEC will keep the public informed throughout the cleanup of the site.

Based on the findings of the investigation, NYSDEC in consultation with the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) has determined that the site does not pose a significant threat.

Draft Alternatives Analysis Report

Alternative ways to clean the site up were considered by the Brownfield Cleanup Program (BCP) applicant after performing a detailed investigation of the site under New York's BCP. The alternatives were evaluated and a preferred cleanup is presented in a Draft Alternatives Analysis Report. The Report is available for review at the locations identified on this page under the heading "Locations to View Project Documents." An abbreviated version of the Report is also available by clicking on the PDF link on the right hand column of this page called "December 2011 Decision Document."

The report considers what impacts remain at the site after a number of preliminary cleanups known as Interim Remedial Measures (IRM) were completed. The report then proposes a remedy to prevent human contact and reduce any impacts to the environment from any remaining contamination.

The IRMs were implemented under NYSDEC oversight and included:

  • Excavating petroleum-impacted soil/fill
  • Removing underground storage tank(s)
  • Bio-remediating non-hazardous petroleum impacted soil/fill on-site
  • Excavating and removing soil/fill not suited for bio-remediation
  • Backfilling excavations with bio-treated soil/fill and/or recycled slag

What is Proposed

Source contamination found during the investigation was removed or addressed during the IRM, however, residual contamination remains that would prevent unrestricted or residential re-use. This remaining contamination does not prevent reuse for commercial or industrial purposes but measures are required to prevent erosion or casual human contact.

To prevent erosion or casual human contact it is proposed that any portion of the site, upon build out, that is not covered by buildings, roadways or parking be covered with at least one foot of clean cover material.

A Site Management Plan, (SMP) will be implemented that controls any future activities that may disturb this cover or any soils below this cover. The SMP also directs how contaminated soils that may be dug up in the future will be addressed or disposed.

An Environmental Easement will be placed on the property that ensures that any owner or future owner follows the SMP, notifies the Department of any change in use and prohibits the use of groundwater for potable purposes.

How to Comment

NYSDEC is accepting written comments about the draft alternatives analysis report and proposed remedy for 45 days, from 12/12/2011 through 1/27/2012. Please submit comments to the project manager listed under Project Related Questions in the "Who to Contact" area below.

Next Steps

NYSDEC will consider public comments, revise the plan as necessary, and approve the proposed remedy. NYSDOH must concur with the proposed remedy. After approval, the proposed remedy becomes the selected remedy. The draft Remedial Action Work Plan that describes the proposed remedy is revised as needed and will be made available to the public. The applicant may then design and perform the cleanup action to address the site contamination, with oversight by NYSDEC.


The Tecumseh Phase I Business Park (site) is situated in an industrial area and is one parcel of a larger property identified on the Erie County Tax maps as SBL 141.11-1.111 that once was the Bethlehem Steel Company (BSC).

The 102 acre vacant site is vegetated with natural grasses, shrubs and poplar trees typical of a primary shrub-young forest ecosystem. Remnants of former steel manufacturing buildings and foundations are prevalent. An active rail spur which parallels the access road traverses the eastern side of the site. The site is zoned Commercial/Industrial and a site Master Development Plan exists.

The site was formerly a portion of BSC's steel making operations. Prior uses of the site included the manufacture of steel, until production was discontinued at the site in 1983. Specific processes and steel making facilities performed on or proximate to the parcel included:

  • Open Hearth Furnaces
  • Blooming Mill
  • Billet Preparation Mills
  • Roughing Mills
  • Rail Mills
  • Foundry
  • Water Treatment Plant

Who Should I Call If I Have Questions About the Site?

Site-Related Project Questions
Mr. Thomas Forbes P.E.
Project Manager
Benchmark Consultants
2558 Hamburg Turnpike, Suite 300
Lackawanna, NY 14218
(716) 856-0599

Site-Related Environmental Questions
Mr. Maurice Moore
Project Manager
270 Michigan Avenue
Buffalo, NY 14203
(716) 851-7220

Site-Related Health Questions
Mr. Matthew Forcucci
NYS Department of Health
584 Delaware Avenue
Buffalo, NY 14202
(716) 847-4501

Locations to View Project Documents

To keep you informed, the City of Buffalo and DEC have set up two locations at which you may view site-related project documents. These locations include:

Lackawanna Public Library
560 Ridge Road
Lackawanna, NY 14218
Attn: Jennifer Hoffman, Librarian
(716) 823-0630

NYS Department of Environmental Conservation
270 Michigan Avenue
Buffalo, NY 14203
(716) 851-7220
(Please call for an appointment.)