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GM Donates $10,000 to Flint for Tree-Planting Project


tree (select to view enlarged photo)

Funds will help support city’s phytoremediation of historic ‘Chevy in the Hole’ plant site

FLINT, MI--May 4, 2013: Two days after announcing plans to purchase the first Durant-Dort Carriage Company factory in Flint, the automaker presented Flint city leaders with $10,000 to purchase and plant trees this spring on the nearby Chevy in the Hole manufacturing site.

The trees will be used as part of a city phytoremediation project on the historic industrial site once operated by General Motors. Phytoremediation is a process in which plants are used to contain or eliminate heavy metals, pesticides and other types of pollution, as opposed to excavating contaminated soil.

“For the better part of a century, this site played an important part in the growth of General Motors,” said Terri Burden, plant manager at Flint Engine Operations. “Now, we – the men and women of GM in Flint – have an opportunity to help transform this former industrial site into an environmental remediation model.”

On Wednesday, Mark Reuss, president, GM North America, announced plans by GM to be the curator of the Durant-Dort office building that is operated by the Genesee County Historical Society.

Additionally, Reuss announced that GM signed a purchase agreement to acquire “Factory One,” which was part of the Durant-Dort Carriage Company. Both facilities are located within walking distance of the property where GM will support phytoremediation efforts.

“The transformation of Chevy in the Hole into a place where visitors can learn about the site’s rich history as well as utilizing its greatest nature resource – the Flint River – will enhance Flint’s quest to become a destination place,” said John Bradburn, GM waste-reduction manager.

The Chevy in the Hole site was home to the Flint Wagon Works from 1883 to 1913. It was also home to the first Buick plant in Flint, which produced Buick engines from 1904 to 1909 and the first production year for Buick Automobiles, the 1904 Model B. While the collection of GM factories on the site was known by different names through the years, the property is commonly referred to as Chevy in the Hole. The last factory on the site closed about a decade ago.

The Flint Economic Development Corp. purchased the parcel in 2008 from Delphi Corp., the last operator of the site. The city of Flint has a plan to create a massive green space along the river, opening it up for recreational, educational and environmental uses.

About GM in Genesee County GM employs 7,500 people in Genesee County at five manufacturing facilities and at GM Customer Care & Aftersales’ world headquarters and two distribution centers. During the past four years, GM has invested more than $1 billion in its operations in the county.