Whitehead Tyee
730 S Myrtle St, Seattle, WA 98108

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Updated February 2020

Seattle Iron & Metals (SIM) and 730 Myrtle LLC are conducting an Interim Action (partial cleanup). They will install a stormwater treatment system and remove contaminated soil in that area. They will also grade and pave the gravel lot to reduce dust and allow stormwater capture. Some of the pavement may later be removed to allow additional cleanup of the site, if necessary. 

SIM  is required by a water quality order to install a stormwater treatment system on the property. This will reduce contamination that runs off the site into the LDW. Visit the Water Quality Section’s website for more information about industrial stormwater permits, and specific details about this site’s permit.

In August 2016, Ecology entered into an Agreed Order (AO) with SIM and 730 Myrtle LLC (the Potentially Liable Persons or PLPs) to investigate and develop a cleanup action plan for the site. Under this legal agreement, the PLPs are required to complete the following:

  • Remedial Investigation (RI). The purpose of the RI is to define the nature and extent of contamination at the site and to determine if it is contributing to the sediment contamination in the Lower Duwamish Waterway. During the RI, the PLPs will collect data necessary to adequately characterize the contamination in soil, groundwater, stormwater, and sediments. 
  • Interim Action. An interim action is a partial cleanup that is immediately necessary to protect human health and the environment or to correct a problem that may become substantially worse or more expensive if delayed.
  • Feasibility Study (FS). The FS will use the results of the RI to evaluate and choose measures to cleanup contamination and prevent recontamination of the sediment.
  • Draft Cleanup Action Plan (DCAP). Ecology will identify a preferred cleanup action based on the results of the FS.

To view site reports and fact sheets, click on the "View Electronic Documents" link to the right.

Why this cleanup matters

This site is part of Ecology’s Lower Duwamish Waterway source control efforts, because it is located near the Lower Duwamish Waterway (LDW) Superfund Site. The 5-mile stretch of the Duwamish River that flows north into Elliot Bay was added to the Superfund National Priorities List by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in 2001.

The sediments (mud) in the river contain a wide range of contaminants due to decades of industrial activity and runoff from urban areas. EPA is leading efforts to clean up the river sediments.

Ecology is leading efforts to control sources of contamination from the surrounding land area. The long-term goal is to minimize recontamination of the river sediment and restore water quality in the river. 
The Whitehead Tyee site is one of several sites that will be cleaned up as part of Ecology’s Source Control Strategy – controlling sources of pollution to the river. Contaminants in the soil and groundwater around the river pose a risk to human health and the environment. They can also find their way into the river through storm runoff and other pathways. For more information, visit our Source Control page.

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Site location

The Whitehead Tyee Site is located in an area of mixed industrial and commercial use on the east side of the Lower Duwamish Waterway in south Seattle. It covers 3.22 acres and lies about 500 feet east of the Lower Duwamish Waterway (LDW).

The site is bordered to the north by the Fox Avenue Building cleanup site. To the south (across S Myrtle Street) are several other businesses. To the west (across Fox Avenue) are Seattle Boiler Works and the main Seattle Iron & Metals recycling facility. To the east, on the other side of East Marginal Way S, is a residential neighborhood.

The Lower Duwamish Waterway drainage basin is divided into source control areas. This site is located within the Seattle Boiler Works to Slip 4 (river mile 2.3-2.8) source control area along the east bank of the river.

Site history

The site was developed into a sawmill and lumber storage facility as early as 1918. King County owned the property through 1953. Tyee Lumber and Manufacturing owned it from 1953 to 1982.

Tyee Lumber and Manufacturing used the site for lumber re-sawing and finishing, wood treatment, and refuse burning from 1929 through the 1980s. The Whitehead Company, Inc. and Reliable Transfer & Storage Company purchased the property in 1986 for trucking and storage operations.

Seattle Iron & Metals Corporation (SIM) started leasing the property in 1999, and purchased the property in 2015. SIM continues to use the property for storing trucks, trailers, bins and scrap metal equipment.


Chemicals of concern are in site soil and groundwater. They include:

•Total Petroleum Hydrocarbons (TPH)
•Pentachlorophenol (PCP)

The following chemicals are still being investigated:

•Solvents (Tetrachoroethylene or PCE)
•Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs)
•Polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs)
•Metals (copper, lead, and mercury)

Previous cleanup work

Contamination was identified in 1991 as part of Fox Avenue Building Site investigations. This Site was placed on the Confirmed and Suspected Contaminated Sites List in 2013. 

Cleanup started under the Voluntary Cleanup Program, but now the site has been moved into the formal process for cleanup under the Model Toxics Cleanup Act (MTCA).


The Model Toxics Control Act (MTCA; Chapter 70.105D RCW is Washington’s environmental cleanup law). It provides requirements for contaminated site cleanup and sets standards that protect human health and the environment. Ecology enacts the MTCA and oversees cleanups. The MTCA site cleanup process is completed in steps (see graphic below) over a variable timeline.

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Map showing site location as King County, WA SITE INFORMATION


View Electronic Documents

Cleanup Site Details Report

Facility Site ID: # 9809

Cleanup Site ID: 12115

Seattle, King County

Status: Cleanup Started   Get definitions of Status terminology

Maureen Sanchez
Site Manager
(425) 649-7254

Brad Petrovich
Project Planner and Public Involvement Coordinator
(425) 649-4486

Document Repositories:

Northwest Regional Office
3190 160th Ave SE
Bellevue, 98008-5452

South Park Branch / Seattle Public Library
8604 Eighth Avenue South
Seattle, 98108