Milwaukee Solvay Coke & Gas Site
Community Involvement Coordinator
Susan Pastor (firstname.lastname@example.org)
312-353-1325 or 800-621-8431, ext. 31325
Remedial Project Manager
312-886-6148 or 800-621-8431, ext. 66148
Assistant Regional Counsel
Craig Melodia (email@example.com)
312-353-8870 or 800-621-8431, ext. 38870
Wisconsin DNR State Project Manager
(where to view written records)
Bay View Library
2566 S. Kinnickinnic Ave.
The Solvay Coke & Gas site is located in Milwaukee, Wis. It covers about 46 acres in a primarily industrial and commercial area north of the Kinnickinnic River and west of the Lincoln Memorial Harbor. The site is bordered to the north by East Greenfield Avenue, to the northeast by railroad tracks and a coal storage area, to the east and south by the Kinnickinnic River, and to the west by more railroad tracks.
Various industrial activities occurred on different lots on the property maybe as early as 1866. A manufactured coke and gas facility located on the northern portion was operated by various entities until around 1983. Wisconsin Wrecking operated a scrap and salvage operation on the northern portion until January 2003. Most of the major coke and gas manufacturing buildings on the northern half of the site were demolished in 2003 when EPA oversaw a hazardous waste removal.
This is what was removed and shipped off site for proper disposal:
- asbestos-containing material in many of the structures, on piping inside and outside the structures and loose asbestos-containing material located on the ground
- coal tar from the manufactured gas plant operations in tanks, piping, on the ground, and in an open pit area
- numerous above-ground storage tanks and associated piping containing coal tar and other residues
- other hazardous substances located throughout the site such as drums of naphthalene crystals and oil in old electrical transformers.
You will need the free Adobe Reader to view some of the files on this page. See EPA's PDF page to learn more.
EPA continues to oversee the site’s investigation. Over the winter, the companies determined to be responsible for the contamination collected ground water, sediment, and soil samples. When enough information about the site is gathered, they will use it to create a document called a remedial investigation report. When the report is deemed "final" in spring 2014, it will be available to the public.
All of the work is being paid for by:
· American Natural Resources Co.
· Cliffs Mining Co., East Greenfield.
· Investors, LLC, Maxus Energy Corp.
· Wisconsin Electric Power Co.
· Wisconsin Gas LLC (d/b/a We Energies)
In other matters, the city of Milwaukee demolished one of the buildings on the property along East Greenfield Avenue in early April. The demolition is not related to EPA’s Superfund work.
Various types of field work, such as soil, sediment and monitoring well sampling, were done in 2008 and 2009 to get a general idea of the environmental problems at the site.
Other work included a test trench investigation to verify the presence, size, and reliability of underground structures which appear to be concrete building foundations; evaluate conditions in and around these underground structures; collect samples of affected soil below the ground's surface; and collect samples of buried waste.
Stockpile sampling was also necessary because the previous property owners demolished many buildings on site in the mid-1980s and stored scrap material in the stockpiles. They were sampled to determine if the material must be deposed of in a licensed landfill or if it can be reused on site as fill material.
Scientific technology called direct sensing used a tool called a membrane interface probe to evaluate the contamination and study underground rock layers. “Vertical contamination” can be found by heating affected soil and ground water with a very hot element on the probe's tip. Gases are transported through the air and passed through a series of tubes and detectors to find organic contaminants (chemicals that evaporate into the air).
- Health Concerns related to asbestos (PDF) (6pp., 257K) April 2008
- Final Community Involvement Plan (PDF) (22pp, 777K) April 2008
- ATSDR's Solvay Coke Health Consultation January 2003
- Administrative Settlement Agreement and Order on Consent for Remedial Investigation/Feasibility Study, Feb. 2007 (PDF) (84pp., 4.4MB)