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West Side Corporation Site

Site No. 241026

History of Site

This 4.5-acre site is owned by the now defunct West Side Corporation. It is surrounded by a combination of industrial, commercial, and residential properties. From about 1969 to 1992, the site was used as a storage and distribution center for dry-cleaning supplies, including large quantities of tetrachloroethene (PCE). Soil and groundwater at the site are contaminated with PCE. A plume of contaminated groundwater is extending from the site in a south-southwest direction.

The New York City Department of Environmental Protection (NYCDEP) has voluntarily assisted the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) in remediating the offsite groundwater plume because they have a mutual interest in achieving the objectives of the implemented remedy: to protect the local aquifer which may be used in the future to supplement the NYC public water supply. Specifically, the NYCDEP designed and constructed the off-site groundwater (Operable Unit No. 2) remedy. Funding for the design and construction of the OU2 remedy initially came from the NYCDEP and now is being reimbursed by NYSDEC under a State Assistance Contract. NYCDEP continues to study the possibility of restarting several groundwater production wells located in Southeast Queens to provide a future source of potable water. Restarting these wells may also address flooding problems from a rising water table in the area..


Operable Unit No. 1 (OU1)

On July 31, 2000, NYSDEC signed a Record of Decision (ROD) which selected a remedy to clean up the soil and groundwater on the site itself. In September 2002, an Explanation of Significant Differences (ESD) was issued by NYSDEC revising the OU1 remedy. Specifically, contamination was to be treated in-place using electrical resistive heating (ERH) and soil vapor extraction (SVE) technologies to greatly reduce the amount of PCE in soil and groundwater. NYSDEC will also seek to impose restrictions on the use of the site to ensure the long-term effectiveness of the on-site remedy.

Operable Unit No. 2 (OU2)

Groundwater: A second ROD was signed in February 2002 that addressed contaminated groundwater that has moved from the site to the south-southwest. To hydraulically contain the plume, NYCDEP installed two recovery wells on the adjacent NYCDEP property known as Station 24, treating the extracted water with activated carbon and discharging the treated water to Bergin Basin through the sewer system under permit. The system was designed to pump and treat up to 2.9 million gallons per day. Construction of this system was completed by NYCDEP in May 2012.

In December 2013, an Amended ROD was signed. The amended remedy eliminated operation of the groundwater treatment system, and now includes chemical injections into the shallow and intermediate groundwater zones to treat the contaminated groundwater plume.

Soil Vapor: Elevated levels of PCE were found in soil gas at various locations within the groundwater plume. NYSDEC is currently undertaking a Soil Vapor Intrusion (SVI) study within the residential area located south-southwest of the site. The SVI study will continue until NYSDEC, in consultation with the NYS Department of Health (NYSDOH), determines that further testing is not needed.

Project Chronology

  • August 1997 - The site was classified by the NYSDEC as a Class 2 inactive hazardous waste site designation.
  • July 2000 - ROD signed by NYSDEC for OU1 (onsite soils and groundwater).
  • February 2002 - ROD signed by NYSDEC for OU2 (off-site groundwater).
  • June 2004 - Remedial Design for OU1 completed by NYSDEC.
  • November 2004 - Remedial Construction for OU1 initiated by NYSDEC.
  • May 2005 - Soil Vapor Intrusion Study (OU3) initiated by NYSDEC and NYSDOH.
  • December 2005 - ERH treatment completed/SVE treatment initiated for OU1.
  • February 2007 - Remedial Design for OU2 completed by the NYCDEP.
  • March 2009 - OU2 remedial action initiated by NYCDEP.
  • June 2011 - OU1 soils remediation completed. Onsite groundwater studies initiated.
  • May 2012 - OU2 RA construction completion by NYCDEP.
  • June 2012 - NYSDEC takes over future OU2 site management responsibilities from NYCDEP.
  • July 2012 thru November 2012 - OU2 treatment system optimization operations complete.
  • December 2012 - NYSDEC suspends OU2 treatment system operations.
  • October 2013 - NYSDEC releases OU2 Proposed Amended Record of Decision for public comment.
  • December 2013 - Amended ROD signed by NYSDEC for OU2

Current Status

Operable Unit 1 (on-site soils/groundwater): Design of the on-site cleanup was completed in June 2004. Remedial construction of the ERH/SVE treatment system was initiated in November 2004 and completed in early December 2005. Power up of the ERH treatment system was initiated in December 2005. ERH operation and confirmation of successful performance was completed in April 2006. SVE treatment system operations were completed in June 2011. Additional investigation and remediation of residual VOCs in onsite groundwater is ongoing. An in-situ pilot study utilizing chemical reagants was initiated in Spring 2012 and continues.

Operable Unit 2 (off-site groundwater): Remedial Design of the amended ROD remedy is expected to be initiated by NYSDEC during the Winter 2013.

Operable Unit 2 (soil vapor): Since May 2005, NYSDEC and the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) have tested soil gas and the air in and surrounding over 120 homes near the former West Side facility to monitor the effects of vapor intrusion. As a result, NYSDEC has installed sub-slab depressurization systems in twenty-nine (29) homes to date.

The ongoing vapor intrusion mitigation program will continue to monitor soil gas levels at adjacent residences and assess the need for additional sub-slab depressurization system installations. Additional system installations will be conducted as necessary in the future to provide mitigation

Next Steps

  1. Continue on with the OU1 groundwater pilot study.
  2. Initiate the remedial design for OU2 groundwater treatment using insitu chemical oxidation technology.
  3. Continue with SVI study and mitigation of impacted structures as necessary.


For Technical Questions:

Dave J. Chiusano, Project Manager (OU1) (Offsite groundwater - OU2)
Eric Hausaman, Project Manager (Soil vapor - OU2)
Division of Environmental Remediation
625 Broadway, 12th Floor
Albany, New York 12233-7017

For Health Related Questions:

Ms. Stephanie Selmer
NYS Department of Health
Empire State Plaza, Corning Tower Room #1787
Albany, NY 12237
518-402-7860 or 800-458-1158 ext. 27860