lake calumet cluster


The Lake Calumet Cluster site (LCCS) is a group of several land and waste storage/disposal facilities located in southeastern Chicago, Cook County, Illinois. The site is approximately 87 acres in size and is bordered by the Paxton I Landfill to the north, Land-and-Lakes #3 Landfill to the west, the Norfolk and Western Railroad right-of-way to the east, and 122nd Street to the south. The LCC site consists of the following individual areas: Alburn Incinerator, Unnamed Parcel, U.S. Drum II, and the Paxton Avenue Lagoons. Prior to 1949, the site consisted primarily of wetlands. However, activities up to the 1970s, before enactment of the major environmental laws, the wetlands here were used for filling and dumping. The United States Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) and the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA) have conducted numerous investigations at the site which document soil, sediment, and groundwater contamination in the four areas. The Alburn Incinerator Parcel received slag and various forms of bulk waste and was used for staging, storing, incinerating, and illegally dumping wastes. The Unnamed Parcel is classified as an unpermitted landfill by the State of Illinois. It received various municipal, industrial, and chemical wastes, The U.S. Drum parcel was used as a dumping ground for industrial and municipal wastes. The Paxton Area Lagoons were used as a dump by nearby steel mills in the 1940s. Alburn Incinerator This 35 acre parcel, which has become known as the Alburn Incinerator, does not actually still contain an incinerator. It is a piece of land that was used as landfill from 1967 to 1977. The company that ran the landfill applied for an incinerator permit under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) in 1979. RCRA is the federal law enacted to manage the generation, treatment, and disposal of hazardous waste. In 1982, the permit was revoked due to violations of its permit requirements. The company operating this facility stored and incinerated hazardous waste and sludge, including paints, thinners, varnishes, chlorinated solvents, styrene, ink, adhesives, waste oils, antifreeze, petroleum, coal tar, and waste solvents. Unnamed Parcel This 38 acre area consists of an unpermitted landfill. It is believed that this area received various municipal, industrial, and chemical waste materials from the 1940s to the 1960s. U.S. Drum II This is a 2.5 acre area which was used from the 1940s to the 1970s as a dump for industrial and municipal waste. In the mid-1970s, it was used as a hazardous waste and petroleum recovery facility until a fire in July 1975. In 1979, a waste drum temporary storage and transfer facility operated in this location. Paxton Area Lagoons The lagoons were active in the 1940s, accepting a variety of chemical wastes from nearby steel mills. Drums were also alleged to have been buried here. Numerous field investigations have been performed by US EPA and Illinois EPA. Since 1998, a total of 123 surface soil samples and 19 subsurface soil samples have been collected and analyzed. Additionally, 145 test pit excavations have been performed. In addition, groundwater monitoring wells were installed and sampled for volatile organic compounds (VOCs), semi-volatile organic compounds (SVOCs), and metals. Site Responsibility This site has been addressed through both federal and state actions.

Hazardous Ranking Score

30 / 100

A score of 28.5 or higher qualifies a site for the Superfund National Priority List.

Regional Contact

Region 5
Phone: (312) 353-2000

Contact Region



Site Inspection
Preliminary Assessment
Final Listing On NPL

Contaminants & Health Effects

      Endocrine Disrupter
      Reproductive Toxin
      Persistent, bioaccumulative and toxic


        African American
        American Indian and Alaska Native
        Native Hawaiian


        People living
        within a 1 mile radius


        Average Income


        Occupied homes

        Potentially Responsible Parties

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