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Durez North Tonawanda Facility

Site Number 932018

October 2013 Fact Sheet

Durez Update: Pettit Creek Flume (PCF) - Sewer Cleaning Activities

A drainage improvement and wildlife revitalization project is planned for the former Durez Plastics Site located at 700 Walck Road in the City of North Tonawanda, Niagara County, New York. The site is currently operated by Glenn Springs Holdings, Inc., an affiliate of Occidental Chemical Corporation (OCC). This work is being performed as part of the site's Operation, Maintenance, and Monitoring (OM&M) requirements and will improve area surface drainage, reduce/eliminate potential surface runoff from the site to off site locations, remove trees and vegetation that could impact the perimeter interceptor trench, which provides groundwater containment for the site, and provide a response to neighborhood concerns regarding surface runoff from the site.

By the Numbers:

Superfund Numbers:
2 - # of brownfields in site, 'Durez' and 'PCF Inlet'
5.5 acres - area of PCF Inlet
4.9 acres - replanting area with native vegetation
6 to 8 weeks - length of project
15 years - length site has remained vacant
67.8 acres - total area of site
2,500 feet - length of tree line clearing along CSX line
90,000 sq. ft. - area of proposed new wetland

Site Timeline:

1921 - 1926
General Plastics founded, name changed to Durez
1950 - 1960
Site becomes Hooker Chemical then OCC
OCC begins shutting down operations at site
1995 - 1996
Operations ceased at site
1997 - 2012
Vacant site currently groundwater collection and treatment system year round
September: construction activities starting
Fall: native wetland vegetation and prairie grass mixtures planted
Spring: native tree and shrub planting to be completed

Project Background

Glen Springs Holdings, Inc (GSH) a subsidiary of Occidental Chemical Coporation (OCC) is proposing to conduct sediment removal from the Pettit Creek Flume (PCF) System located in North Tonawanda, New York. The areas of sediment buildup were identified during investigation, sampling, and video inspection activities of the PCF System and Cove conducted in 2008 and 2009. The investigation, sampling, and inspection activities were conducted in order to further evaluate previously identified environmental impacts to the Pettit Creek Cove (Cove) area and the extent of chemical presence within the PCF system potentially associated with OCC's Durez, North Tonawanda (Durez NT) chemical manufacturing facility's former operations.

The PCF is a City of North Tonawanda (City) storm sewer that collects storm water from the central portion of the City and discharges to the Cove. The Cove is a man-made embayment of the Little Niagara River, and tributary of the East Branch of the Niagara River. The PCF formerly received non-contact cooling water and storm water discharges from the Durez NT facility that resulted in impacts to PCF and Cove sediment. In 2008, (GSH) undertook an investigation of both the Cove and the PCF storm sewer system. The investigation included the collection of sediment samples from the Cove, sediment samples from the PCF, flow monitoring of the PCF, and bathymetric data for the Cove. The purpose of the investigation was to determine the current conditions of the Cove, evaluate flow and sediment loadings to the Cove from the PCF, and to evaluate potential source(s) of the residual contaminants.

The results of the investigation indicated that there are areas within the PCF with varying amounts of sediment buildup. Analytical data for the sediment samples collected from random locations of sediment buildup indicate the presence of Site-related constituents of concern (COCs). Therefore, to eliminate the potential for deposition of sediments containing Site-related COCs to the Cove, GSH has prepared this Work Plan for the removal of the sediment buildups. Sediment will be removed from the beginning of the PCF located south of the intersection of Nash Road and Walck Road and the terminus of the PCF at the Cove.

Scope of Work Details

The project work will include the removal of the sediments present in the PCF from Nash MH-9 (Prospect Ave & Nash Rd) south to the PCF Cove. To accomplish this task, GSH proposes to employ both dry and wet vacuum techniques. The preferred method of cleaning will be dry vacuuming. Contractor personnel will enter the PCF and manually dry vacuum the sediment. If conditions require, shovels and/or picks may be utilized in conjunction with the manual vacuuming to loosen the sediment. If required, high pressure low volume water jetting may be used for a final rinsing of the PCF. Water usage will be minimized to avoid having to recapture the water in the PCF, to minimize the need to treat wash waters, and to minimize the dewatering of the sediment prior to disposal. The contractor will use either the combination of vacuum trucks and jetter trucks, if required, or combination jetter-vac trucks to accomplish the cleaning activities. It is estimated that approximately 7,300 linear feet of the PCF will be inspected, sediment removed where present, and cleaning verified through video inspection. This work will be conducted sequentially from Nash Road MH-11 downstream to the outfall at the Cove and then Nash Road MH-11 upstream to the intersection of Walck Road and Nash Road, north of Nash Road MH-9. The locations of the sewer to be cleaned are shown on the last page of this fact sheet.

In addition to cleaning and video inspection, GSH proposes to line approximately 448 feet of the Nash Road storm sewer starting at the intersection of Nash Road and Walck Road southward to Nash MH-11 (Duane Dr. & Nash Rd.). This lining will be designed to prevent water and sediment from infiltrating the sewer. The length of storm sewer to be lined extends from south of the intersection of Walck Road and Nash Road at MH-9 to MH-11 where the sewer turns to west. Based on a review of the 2009 video inspection footage the storm sewer to be lined is a 42-inch square concrete culvert. It is anticipated that the lining will be accomplished by using cured-in-place pipe (CIPP) or possibly shotcrete; however, the lining method may need to be modified based on the findings of the sewer cleaning and video inspection activities.

The CIPP process will consist of the insertion of a resin coated liner tube in the cleaned sewer. The resin tube will be cured using steam or hot water. This curing process will insure a tight-fitting, joint-less replacement sewer pipe. The sewer laterals will be restored to the newly lined Nash Road sewer by cutting the cured liner from the inside of the pipe using a remote controlled cutting device. Once the CIPP is installed and all laterals restored, the lined section of the Nash Road sewer will be video inspected to provide a complete record of the PCF sewer system after the cleaning and lining activities are complete. If lining of the sewer using shotcrete is determined to be the best approach, it is anticipated that shotcrete lining will cover the bottom half of each sidewall and the floor.

Community air monitoring will be performed during the duration of all work activities in conformance with NYS Department of Health guidelines.

Construction activities will be commencing in October 2013 and will occur from approximately 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. Work activities are expected to take approximately 4 to 6 weeks to complete.


Founded in 1921 by Harry M. Dent as General Plastics, Inc., the site changed its name to Durez Plastics and Chemical Co. in 1926. In the mid 1950s, the company joined Hooker Chemical until Hooker Chemical was purchased by OCC in the mid 1960s. OCC operated the facility until it began slowly shutting down operations in the mid to late 1980s and ceased operations in 1995/1996. The Site manufactured various chemicals and plastics for use by industry. The primary chemicals used at the Site were phenol and formaldehyde. These chemicals were used largely for the production of phenolic resins and molding compound products.

During the period that the plant was operating, there were several areas where waste material was buried or where spills from operations had occurred that resulted in impacted surface and subsurface soils, as well as groundwater beneath the facility.

Demolition of all plant structures was completed in December 1997. The site is currently a vacant field with a groundwater collection and treatment system in operation 365 days a year. All approved remedial activities have been completed, and the site is in the OM&M phase of the Remedial Action.

In 1977, OCC and the DEC entered into negotiations regarding concerns over impacted surface sediment, site soils, and groundwater. To address the DEC's concerns, OCC entered into several agreements with the DEC, including a Partial Consent Judgment (PCJ). The PCJ defined the Site as those properties located at 700 Walck Road (approximately 67.8 acres), the City storm sewer system known as the Pettit Creek Flume (PCF), and the discharge point of the PCF known as the PCF Inlet or Cove (approximately 5.5 acres in area). Following the execution of the PCJ, OCC engaged in multiple environmental investigations culminating in the Remedial Action for the site in 1989/1990 with the installation of the Site's Interceptor Trench (IT) and an activated carbon water treatment system. Since 1989/1990, the site has operated in accordance with the PCJ and the Site's OM&M requirements.

Additional site details, including environmental and health assessment summaries, are available on DEC's website.

Where to Find Information

Public interest in this project is valued and appreciated. Project documents are available at the following location to help the public stay informed. Visit State Superfund Program, for more information.

NYS DEC Region 9 Office
270 Michigan Avenue
Buffalo, New York 14203
(Call for appointment)

North Tonawanda Public Library
505 Meadow Dr
North Tonawanda, NY 14120
(716) 693-4132

For More Information

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Who to Contact

Comments and questions are always welcome and should be directed as follows:

Project Related Questions:
Brian Sadowski
NYS DEC, Division of Environmental Remediation
270 Michigan Avenue
Buffalo, NY 14203-2915

Site-Related Health Questions:
Matthew Forcucci
584 Delaware Avenue
Buffalo, NY 14202-1295

Site Location

Aerial view of Durez site
Aerial view of Durez site