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U.S. EPA REGION 5
ST. JOSEPH COUNTY
MISHAWAKA

Congressional District # 2

DOUGLASS ROAD/UNIROYAL, INC., LANDFILL

EPA ID# IND980607881
Last Updated: August, 2014

Site Description

The 16-acre Douglas Road/Uniroyal Inc. Landfill site is owned by Uniroyal, Inc. and operated between 1954 and 1979. Uniroyal, Inc. filed for bankruptcy in 1991, and the site became a Fund-lead Superfund site. From 1954 to 1971, solvents, fly ash, paper, wood stock, rubber, and plastic wrap were disposed of at the unlined landfill. After operations ceased, the landfill was covered with topsoil and seeded. According to the company, some 6,000 barrels of waste were disposed of at the landfill. The South Bend Water Department operates seven wells within three miles of the site that serve approximately 120,000 people. Approximately 2,100 people live within a one mile radius of the site. Juday Creek is located approximately 2,000 feet south of the site.

Site Responsibility

This site is being addressed through federal and state actions

Threats and Contaminants

The groundwater is contaminated with hydrocarbons. The soils are also contaminated with organics, both volatile and semi-volatile.  Potential health risks include coming into contact with or accidentally ingesting the contaminated soil and groundwater. The site is secured, reducing the potential for direct contact.   Organic contamination was also detected in off-site residential wells to the southwest of the site.

Cleanup Progress

EPA split the cleanup into three parts. The first part was the extension of city water from the cities of Mishawaka and South Bend to approximately 100 homes. This water extension was necessary because there were 15 wells that were contaminated with vinyl chloride and trichloroethylene identified during seven sampling rounds. This water extension project was completed in January 1996. 

The second phase was the selection of a multi-layer landfill cap to prevent direct contact with contaminated soils. The cap design was completed in winter 1995, and construction of the cap was completed in December 1999. 

The third part is the selection of a groundwater extraction system and treatment via an artificial wetland constructed in an area to the west of the landfill site. EPA replanted the wetlands in spring 2000.  Pursuant to a March 2002 agreement between EPA and the city of Mishawaka a filter strip was designed and constructed in fall 2000 to filter site discharge to Juday Creek. The site remedy construction is now complete. EPA initiatiated operation of the groundwater extraction system in March 2002. The Agency also converted the landfill gas collection system to active collection in fall 2002 to help contain methane onsite. The remedy is performing as designed. The State of Indiana assumed responsibility for operation & maintenance of the landfill cap portion of the remedy in November 2003.  Site operations continued with one on-site well (EXT-1) and one offsite well (EXT-5) extracting groundwater.  The onsite groundwater plume has reduced both in extent as well as concentrations as a result of operations. 

EPA's five year review in 2002 concluded that the remedy was performing as expected and recommended that sampling of Juday Creek be discontinued due to the success of the extraction system.  It also recommended that an exit strategy be developed as the site cleanup was nearing completion with achievement of the performance standards a real possibility, possible before the next five year review.  As a result, EXT-5 was shut off in 2005 because monitoring at that location showed contaminants were below the performance standards.  Sampling conducted in 2006 indicated that EXT-5 would need to be restarted due to elevated concentrations in sampling points near the well.  These indicated that additional operation of this well would continue to extract contaminants from this area.  Five year reviews were completed in 2007 and 2012 and both confirmed that the remedy is performing as designed. 

The operation and maintenance of the site remedy was transferred to the State of Indiana in November 2011. 

Success Story

Interaction with local environmental groups during the groundwater remedy design and construction resulted in a creative solution that satisfied the needs of EPA, and local citizens.  EPA partnered with the City of Mishawaka to design and build the strip.  EPA paid for half of the construction costs and the City built and operates the strip.  This was the first agreement with a local municipality in Region 5 of its kind.

Community Involvement

The community was actiively involved during the city water extension work.  They were also actively involved in the remedy selection process and their comments were an important part of the final remedy decisions at the site.  Local input was instrumental in the design and construction of the filter strip component of the groundwater remedy.  Their concerns about direct discharge to Juday Creek were alleviated with the installation of the filter strip.  Community interest has waned over the last several years as area redevelopment has increased.

Property Reuse

The City requested permission to build an onsite infiltration basin when they completed their Douglas Road expansion project.  This was constructed in the southwest portion of the site.

Contacts

Remedial Project Manager, U.S. EPA
dion novak (novak.dion@epa.gov)
(312) 886-4737

Community Involvement Coordinator, U.S. EPA
janet pope
(312) 353-0628

Aliases

DOUGLAS ROAD UNIROYAL INC LDFL

 

Site Profile Information

This profile provides you with information on EPA's cleanup progress at this Superfund site.

 


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