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Public meeting set for Ninemile, Geddes Brook clean-up plans

New state DEC proposals for the cleanup of Geddes Brook and Nine Mile Creek will be unveiled to the public in a meeting set for 7 p.m., Wednesday Dec. 10 at the Martha Eddy Room at the New York State Fairgrounds.

The DEC outlined the proposals in a release last week, which would involve the removal of contaminated soil from Ninemile Creek and Geddes Brook.

The plans will be implemented by Honeywell, formerly Solvay Process Co. According to the DEC, contaminants at the sites include arsenic, lead, hexachlorobenzene, mercury, PCBs, and phenol, among others.

Honeywell's Syracue Program Director John McAuliffe presented briefly at the November Geddes Town Board meeting to update residents on the project and field questions. Honeywell joined with DEC in 2006 on the Onondaga Lake Remediation Plan, most recently teaming with SUNY ESF to plant shrub willows on a brownfield site this summer at the former Solvay Settling Basins in Camillus.

The existing contamination of Ninemile Creek will require the dredging and excavating of approximately 59,000 cubic yards of soil, covering an area of about 15 acres. The soil would be replaced with a habitat layer and backfill, and isolation cap where necessary. The proposal also calls for restoration of the streambed and banks, along with surrounding wetlands and habitat. The project would take an estimated two years to complete and cost around $20.2 million.

The "interim remedial measure" proposed for Geddes Brook would excavate contaminated soil from an area of the brook, a bank-to-bank removal of approximately 4,200 cubic yards of sediment, and removal of soil from the adjacent floodplain, at a depth of one to two feet. In select areas, the soil would be replaced with one foot of vegetated cover to establish wetland.

Public comments and input on the plans are encouraged by the DEC, and can by submitted in writing, e-mail or in person at the Dec. 10 meeting.

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