Tecumseh Phase III
Fact Sheet March 2013
Tecumseh Business Parks Update: Remedy Proposed for Site Contamination; Public Comment Period Announced
The public is invited to comment on a proposed remedy being reviewed by New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) to address contamination related to the sites III-7 and III-8 Tecumseh Phase III Business Park ("sites") located at 1951 Hamburg Turnpike, Lackawanna, Erie County. Please see the map for the Sites' Locations. Documents related to the cleanup of this site can be found at the locations identified below under Where to Find Information.
Based on the findings of the investigation, DEC in consultation with New York State Department of Health (DOH) has determined that the sites' threat status is not significant.
How to Comment
DEC is accepting written comments about the proposed plan for 45 days, from March 25, 2013 through May 8, 2013. The proposed plan is available for public review at the locations identified below under Where to Find Information. Please submit comments to the DEC project manager listed under Project Related Questions in the Who to Contact area below.
Digital Files of the Proposed Decision Documents
- III-7: Proposed Decision Document (12 page PDF, 1.77 MB)
- III-8: Proposed Decision Document (12 page PDF, 1.77 MB)
Draft Remedial Work Plan and Proposed Decision Document
The cleanup plan is described in DEC's Proposed Decision Document, which is based on a more detailed "Remedial Work Plan". The proposed remedy consists of:
Remedy for III-7: This remedy includes removal of contaminated soils determined to be a source for degradation to the environment e.g. soils containing petroleum product or elevated arsenic. Upon removal of the material and with completion of the current construction of a manufacturing facility, remaining exposed soils will be covered with a one foot of clean soil over a demarcation layer. The soils will be vegetated and restrictions will be placed on the property, including restriction of use to commercial or industrial uses, prohibiting groundwater use, requiring adherence with a Site Management Plan, continued maintenance of the cover and periodic certification that all required items or restrictions remain in place.
Remedy for III-8: This remedy includes removal of contaminated soils determined to be a source for degradation to the environment e.g. soils containing petroleum product or elevated arsenic. Upon removal of the material remaining exposed soils will be covered with a one foot of clean soil over a demarcation layer. The soils will be vegetated and restrictions will be placed on the property, including restriction of use to commercial or industrial uses, prohibiting groundwater use, requiring adherence with a Site Management Plan, continued maintenance of the cover and periodic certification that all required items or restrictions remain in place
The proposed remedy was developed by Tecumseh Redevelopment, Inc. and Welded Tube USA Realty, LLC ("applicants") after performing a detailed investigation of the site under New York's Brownfield Cleanup Program (BCP).
DEC will consider public comments, revise the plan as necessary, and issue a final Decision Document. After approval, the proposed remedy becomes the selected remedy. The draft Remedial Work Plan and Proposed Decision Document are revised as needed to describe the selected remedy, and will be made available to the public. The applicants will design and perform the cleanup action to address the site contamination, with oversight by DEC.
DEC will keep the public informed throughout the investigation and cleanup of the site.
Prior to Remediation: Widespread exceedances of unrestricted use site cleanup objectives (SCOs) are common in the soil and fill. Based upon investigations conducted to date, the primary contaminants of concern for soils at the Tecumseh Phase III-7 and III-8 site are metals, including arsenic and lead. The nature and extent of metals contamination is consistent with the former site use as a steel manufacturing facility. Contaminants of concern to a lesser extent are semi-volatile organic compounds (SVOCs) including polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). PAHs are usually associated with those activities that include burning of fossil fuels and heavy rail use, both of which were ubiquitous at the former steel mill.
Groundwater was sampled and low levels of PAHs exceeding the groundwater quality standards (GwQS) including naphthalene and benzo(a)anthracene were present in one of the on-site monitoring wells. Test pit data surrounding the monitoring well did not indicate a source area(s) near this well.
Groundwater is not used at the site and deed restricted from use for either potable or non-potable purposes without treatment. The site does not pose a significant threat to the closest surface water.
Location: The Tecumseh Phase III-7 is one of 10 sub-parcels comprising the Tecumseh Phase III Business Park (Phase III). Phase III is located at 1958 Hamburg Turnpike in the City of Lackawanna, New York. Situated in an industrial area, Phase III is part of a larger property that once included the Bethlehem Steel Company (BSC) and is identified on the Erie County Tax maps as SBL 141.11-1.111. Phase III is located west of Route 5 and the Tecumseh Phase II Business Park, south of Gateway Metroport and east of the remaining former Bethlehem Steel property and Lake Erie.
Tecumseh Phase III-8 is one of 10 sub-parcels comprising the Tecumseh Phase III Business Park (Phase III) located at 1958 Hamburg Turnpike in the City of Lackawanna, New York. Situated in a former industrial area, Phase III is part of a larger property that once included the BSC identified on the Erie County Tax maps as SBL 141.11-1.111. Phase III is located to the west of Route 5 and the Tecumseh Phase II Business Park, to the south of Gateway Metroport and east of the remaining Former Bethlehem Steel Property.
Site Features: Centrally located within Phase III is Phase III-7, a 39.23 acre, non-descript, sub-parcel with no remarkable or unique features. The mostly rectangular Phase III is approximately 5,500 feet long, averages 1,500 feet wide and is 148.83 acres in size. Bisected by Smokes Creek, Phase III is flat, covered with slag fill and remnants of former steel manufacturing buildings and foundations. Most of the business park is vegetated with natural grasses, shrubs and poplar trees typical of a primary shrub-young forest ecosystem. The entire BSC site is fenced with vehicle access limited to one automatic gate.
Phase III-8 is a smaller 5.92 acre, rectangular, sub-parcel centrally located within Phase III. Along the northern and eastern side of the Site is sub-parcel III-9 and to the south is sub-parcel III-7.
Zoning/Use: Phase III and the Site are zoned medium industrial. Surrounding uses near the site include: adjacent, to the west, a rail corridor within Parcel III-10; further west, a portion of the BSC that is a class 2 inactive hazardous waste disposal site being addressed by the responsible party; adjacent along the eastern side is a drainage feature, named the South Water Return Trench; beyond which is the Tecumseh Phase II Business Park Site, Site #C915198; and, to the south are sub-parcels III-5 and III-6. Future use anticipates industrial re-use.
Historic Use: Formerly Phase III was a portion of BSC's steel making operations. Specific processes and steel making facilities performed on or proximate to the Site included:
- Open Hearth Furnaces
- Basic Oxygen Furnace
- Mold Warming and Preparation
- Electrical Substations
- Wastewater Treatment
Geology/Hydrology: The entire Phase III is filled with between two to eight feet of steel and iron-making slag as well as other fill material being used for backfill. Underlying fill material are lacustrine silts and clays. Native materials are encountered from about 12 to 14 feet below ground surface.
Bedrock is Middle Devonian age, Skaneateles Formation, consisting of Levanna shale and Stafford limestone of the Hamilton Group. Bedrock varies from about 24 feet deep in the southeastern corner of the site to 45 feet deep with the near the northern border of Phase III.
Due to the porous nature of the slag/soil fill there is very little storm water retention, or surface runoff, as most of the precipitation seeps into the highly permeable slag/soil fill. Any surface waters flow into the South Water Return Trench which parallels the eastern border of the property and flows southerly where it empties into Smokes Creek which discharges to the west into Lake Erie.
Groundwater, when encountered, is about 7 feet deep trending westerly and northerly toward Lake Erie.
Brownfield Cleanup Program
New York's BCP encourages the voluntary cleanup of contaminated properties known as "brownfields" so that they can be reused and redeveloped. These uses include recreation, housing, business or other uses. A brownfield is any real property that is difficult to reuse or redevelop because of the presence or potential presence of contamination.
Where to Find Information
Project documents are available for review at the following locations to help the public stay informed. These documents include the IRM Work Plan and the application to participate in the BCP.
Lackawanna Public Library
560 Ridge Road
Lackawanna, NY 14218
Phone: (716) 823-0630
Hours: Mon. & Wed. 1:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.;
Tues. & Thurs. 10:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m.;
Fri. 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.;
Sat. & Sun. (closed)
Effective Sep 3: Sat. 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.; Fri. & Sun. (closed)
NYS DEC Region 9 Office
270 Michigan Avenue
Buffalo, New York 14203
Phone: (716) 851-7220
Hours: Mon. - Fri. 8:30 a.m. - 4:45 p.m.
(Call for appointment)
Who to Contact
Comments and questions are always welcome and should be directed as follows:
NYS DEC, Region 9
270 Michigan Avenue
Buffalo, NY 14203
(Call for appointment)
Site-Related Health Questions
584 Delaware Avenue
Buffalo, NY 14202
Thomas Forbes, P.E.
Turnkey Environmental Restoration, LLC
2558 Hamburg Turnpike, Suite #300
Buffalo, NY 14218
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Aerial view of site location