CDS Group aims to reopen former Syracuse Pottery mining site

A plot of land on Pottery Road once provided quality clay for a successful industry, Syracuse Pottery. After about 15 years of the site being closed, three business partners are seeking to reopen it.

Rich Canestrare, Nick DeSantis and Paul Skrupa, who make up CDS group, started the land purchasing process when Syracuse Pottery went out of business. Since then they have had the clay tested. They were amazed at what they found.

"We've had some feedback from people in the testing industry," said Scrupa. "They were very curious as to where these samples were taken from due to the high quality."

Testers told them that they haven't seen clay of such quality in 25 years.

"In retrospective it was used for clay pots, so it must have been very high quality at the time," Skrupa said.

Skrupa said testing done by PW Laboratories found the clay to have potential uses in health care and cosmetics, as well as construction. CDS Group will work with the Clay Mineral Society, a university-based international organization, to further evaluate potential uses for the clay.

CDS Group has two specific sites in mind, which can be faintly seen from Matrix Turf Solutions. One is 1,500 feet from the road and the other, 650. DeSantis said the mining could potentially involve 339,000 cubic yards of clay and 25,000 cubic yards of topsoil. CDS Group would be permitted to mine 20 feet down.

The town of Camillus approved the DEC as lead agent for CDS Group's mining permit application at the Aug. 24 town board meeting. The town will hold a public hearing at 7 p.m. Sept. 28 in the Camillus Municipal building to consider amending town code that would allow CDS Group to reopen the mining site.

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