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Charlevoix Municipal Well

Site Information
Contact Information

Community Involvement Coordinator
Janet Pope (pope.janet@epa.gov)
312-353-0628 or 800-621-8431, ext.30628

Remedial Project Manager
Matt Ohl
(ohl.matthew@epa.gov)
312-886-4442 or 800-621-8431, ext. 64442

Repositories

(where to view written records)

Charlevoix Public Library
Reference Desk
220 West Clinton St
Charlevoix, MI 49720

Background

The city of Charlevoix is located on an isthmus between Lake Michigan and Round Lake, expanding along the shore of Lake Charlevoix. The population of about 3,000 residents increases to an estimated 30,000 people during the summer months. The original Charlevoix Municipal Well site was on the shore of Lake Michigan and consisted of a municipal well system made of a shallow well connected to a horizontal flume, buried beneath the beach. This well is no longer in use. In 1981, the city was notified by the Michigan Department of Public Health that its water system was contaminated. In response, the city installed four monitoring wells near its municipal well with the assistance of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (MDNR). In 1982, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) installed nine additional groundwater monitoring wells. In 1982 and 1983, the MDNR conducted several soil boring studies to try to locate the source of contamination. The city installed a system to introduce oxygen into the municipal supply in 1983 to treat the contamination. This aeration system was only partially effective in removing contaminants from the water. In response, U.S. EPA installed a new municipal water supply in 1985 through an inter-agency agreement with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Several sources of contamination have been identified through subsequent investigations.  Source areas for the trichloroethylene (TCE) plume included the Charlevoix Middle School between Clinton and Mason Streets.  Source areas for the tetrachloroethylene (PCE) plume include the former Art's Dry Cleaners on the corner of Grant & Antrim Sts., The foprmer Hooker's Dry Cleaners on the corner of Bridge & Hurlbut Sts. and the Former Tool & Die Shop on Lincoln Ave between Grant & State Sts.

Site Updates | Fact Sheets || Five-Year Reviews


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Site Updates

November 2014

Sample results from an EPA study in 2014 found solvents in soil vapor and indoor air samples at eleven properties above levels that may pose an unacceptable long-term human health risk.  Possible sources of this vapor intrusion are nearby former dry cleaners and manufacturers.  As a result of this study, EPA is planning to install systems in affected homes to remove solvent vapors from the soil. These systems are similar to radon mitigation systems and are being installed at no cost to homeowners. Homeowners are encouraged to cooperate with access to their properties, if requested.

In addition to the installation of vapor systems, EPA will excavate identified sources of the solvents, including an underground storage tank.  EPA also plans to conduct further sampling to better define the contamination and determine if additional actions are necessary. There is no risk to residents drinking water.  The current water system uses water from Lake Michigan. In 1985, EPA completed installation of a new water intake system and water treatment/filtration plant for the City. 

Public availability sessions were held at the Charlevoix Public Library on October 29, 2014.

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