Elias Cove - Site #13

Trenton, Michigan


Project Goals and Objectives: Remediate mercury, lead, zinc and PCB contaminated sediment from Ellias Cove and restore the shoreline using soft engineering techniques

Project Description: Ellias Cove (formerly known as the Black Lagoon) is a backwater embayment located in the Trenton Channel of the Detroit River. The Black Lagoon received its name in the mid-1980s when U.S.-Canadian scientists investigating the Detroit River discovered that oil and grease released during the 1940s-1970s had accumulated in the sediment of Black Lagoon.

In September 2004, the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality signed the first Great Lakes Legacy Act Project Agreement with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for the remediation of contaminated sediments in the Black Lagoon and Trenton Channel, located in the Detroit River Area of Concern. This project resulted in the removal of approximately 115,000 cubic yards of sediment contaminated with mercury, polychlorinated biphenyl, and oil and grease. In 2006, the shoreline habitat was restored, including nursery habitat for fish. The Ellias Cove shoreline was redesigned using soft shoreline engineering techniques and was restored with a $151,250 grant from the Great Lakes Basin Program for Soil Erosion and Sediment Control. The city of Trenton provided match funding. In the summer of 2007, the Black Lagoon was renamed Ellias Cove in honor of the family who donated the adjacent land to Trenton that became Meyer-Ellias Park.

Cost: $150,000 for the restoration portion

Timeframe: 2006

Partners: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, Great Lakes Basin Program for Soil Erosion and Sediment Control, City of Trenton, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Metropolitan Affairs Coalition’s Greater Detroit American Heritage River Initiative, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Michigan Department of Natural Resources, Michigan Sea Grant, Detroit River Remedial Action Plan and JJR

Ecological Effectiveness: A fishery assessment was conducted prior to sediment remediation and shoreline restoration. No post project monitoring of ecological effectiveness has been performed.

Restoration Contact: City of Trenton