North 34th Street

The North 34th Street site includes the former location of Production Plated Plastics and is located in the village of Richland in Kalamazoo County. In 1977, heavy metal contamination was discovered in groundwater samples that were collected from residential wells along North 34th Street.  Investigations conducted by the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) determined the source of the heavy metal contamination was a plastics plating company located on East D Avenue.  Pursuant to court orders, the plastics plating company replaced the affected residential drinking water wells and undertook other response activities.  In 1985, halogenated volatile organic compounds (HVOCs) were identified in the groundwater at the site.  DEQ investigations determined the plastics plating company, as well as a laundry and dry-cleaning business located on North 34th Street, were the cause of the HVOC contamination.  As such, the area-wide impacts were designated as the North 34th Street site.

In the 1980s, the plastics plating company completed work to install, operate, and maintain a groundwater cleanup system. In 1988, MDEQ extended municipal water to the site to provide safe drinking water to the residents with contaminated drinking water wells. The DEQ has also performed work to determine the extent of HVOCs contamination.  The State sued the plating company, however, cost recovery was unsuccessful.  In 1991, the DEQ took over operation and maintenance (O&M) of the groundwater cleanup system after the company went out of business.  The property is now owned by the State of Michigan Land Bank.  Since 1991, numerous cleanup efforts have been implemented—and continue to be implemented--to evaluate conditions and the effectiveness of the groundwater cleanup system.

  • In March of 2018, the city of Kalamazoo informed the MDEQ that as part of a state-wide requirement to test publicly owned treatment works for PFAS the city was proactively collecting effluent samples from permitted discharges to the sanitary system.
  • Effluent samples from the groundwater pumping system at 34th Street were collected by the City’s consultant, Fleis & VandenBrink, on April 13, 2018.The MDEQ’s consultant for the site, AECOM, also was present during the sampling to collect a sample for separate analysis.
  • On May 15, 2018, the city of Kalamazoo notified AECOM of the results of the effluent sampling, which showed PFOS at a concentration of 8,000 parts per trillion (ppt).No other PFAS compounds were detected in the effluent sample.A duplicate sample of the effluent collected by the city indicated the presence of PFOS at a concentration of 7,500 ppt.
  • On May 30, 2018, the DEQ received the results of the effluent sample collected by AECOM.The sampling results indicated the presence of PFOS at a concentration of 9,640 ppt, as well as other PFAS analytes at lower concentrations (non-detect to 39.7 ppt). These results were shared with the city of Kalamazoo, and state and local health departments.
  • On May 31, 2018, the DEQ hosted a meeting with the city, state health department, and county health department to discuss the city’s sampling results and path moving forward.
  • On 6/26/2018, the DEQ received a cost estimate for installing a PFAS treatment system at the facility, and identified funding and a timeline for implementing the treatment system by the end of July.
  • On 6/26/2018, DEQ and AECOM staff collected residential well samples from four residences and one Type II well and expedited analysis of these samples.1 of these samples was non-detect; 4 were greater than 70 ppt.
  • On July 11th and 12th DEQ completed residential well sampling at 24 residences. Results were pending as of the date of this write-up.
  • A townhall was scheduled for 7/18/2018 at the Living Hope Church.


# Effluent Samples Collected

# Effluent Sample Results Received

# Non-Detect PFOS

#ND – 12 ppt PFOS

#> 12 ppt PFOS

Highest Effluent value in ppt PFOS







The above was current as of 7/17/2018.

July 18, 2018 Town Hall Meeting - Presentation by David Harn, DEQ