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EPA makes final decision on Ralston Street Lagoon cleanup

Release Date: 04/10/2009
Contact Information: CONTACT: Kären Thompson, 312-353-8547,

No. 09-OPA058

CHICAGO (April 9, 2009) - U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 5 has issued its final decision on cleanup of the PCB-contaminated sludge and water in the 19-acre Ralston Street Lagoon in Gary, Ind. The lagoon is located between the Gary-Chicago Municipal Airport and the Indiana Toll Road. The cleanup is required by a 2002 consent agreement between EPA and lagoon owners city of Gary and Gary Sanitary District.

After evaluating nine cleanup proposals and following a process of public comment EPA decided to contain lagoon pollution with an underground wall and drain the water. About 553,000 cubic yards of sludge will be solidified and capped. The cleanup will cost an estimated $66.5 million.

Gary Sanitary District has recently submitted a detailed design work plan and must complete the project according to an EPA-approved schedule. The sanitary district will also purchase 6 acres of residential property for use as a contractor's staging area and for water pretreatment.

The final decision is posted on EPA's Web site at

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