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City of Ithaca News

Posted on: March 31, 2018

Additional Measures Planned to Remove Lead Contamination near Former Ithaca Gun Factory

Measures Being Taken at Popular Trails to Protect Public from Potential Exposure 


 The City of Ithaca today announced that the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is taking action to address elevated levels of lead contamination detected in soil in the Ithaca Falls Gorge Trail area below the former Ithaca Gun factory site. 


Sampling performed by New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) contractors in February 2018 identified areas of lead-impacted soils near a public walkway and along a path leading to Ithaca Falls. This sampling was conducted as part of ongoing monitoring in the area following excavation of contaminated soil that was completed by EPA in 2015. In response to recent detections, EPA will conduct additional field sampling to further define and delineate the nature and extent of contamination. This information will be used to evaluate next steps.   Additionally, plans for the installation of a fence and gravel to cover trails are being accelerated to prevent continued migration from the gorge face and reduce potential for public exposure at the popular trail.


The City will be posting signs to warn visitors viewing the Falls within the gorge of the location of the identified impacts so that they may limit contact with the soils in this vicinity.  Additional information and remedial plans and timing will be communicated once the regulatory agencies have identified the project details and schedule.  Please contact Mary Mears at USEPA at (212) 637-3660 or for more information.




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