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Lingering PCB issue to close Harper in St. Clair Shores

Jim Lynch
The Detroit News

A busy section of Harper Avenue in St. Clair Shores will be shut down for nearly a month as federal workers continue to deal with the city’s lingering PCB problem.

The road will be closed to traffic in both directions between Lakeland and Bon Brae as crews remove an underground pipe thought to be contaminated.

The Bon Brae-Harper intersection has long been an area of interest for local, state and federal officials as a possible gathering point for polychlorinated biphenyls, also known as PCBs, that have contaminated a pair of local canals. Those canals, on Lang and Revere streets, have been plagued by environmental problems for nearly 15 years now.

PCBs are a chemical compound used as a coolant and can be toxic to people after prolonged exposure.

In a press release issued Friday, the agency said: “Recently, EPA observed contaminated oil flowing from a pipe under Harper Avenue during the agency’s ongoing cleanup of the Ten Mile drain storm water system.”

Officials with the U.S. EPA estimate work to remove the pipe will take roughly four weeks. Postings for detours will be set up at the Bon Brae-Harper intersection.

jlynch@detroitnews.com