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Havertown PCP

MAY 1997


The installation of the basic cap at the Havertown PCP Site was completed on November 22, 1996. As part of the installation, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) seeded and covered the cap with straw matting to protect it from erosion over the winter. This cap prevents exposure to the contaminated soils underneath the cap.


The cap consists of a layer of clean soil over the contaminated soils, a low linear density polyethylene membrane cap, a drainage layer above the cap, and a minimum of 18 inches of clean soil and/or gravel above the cap to protect it. In some areas, EPA covered the surface with gravel to allow continued use of the properties by businesses owning or leasing these areas. Fences were installed to protect areas of the cap and to define property boundaries. EPA is conducting regular inspections of the cap to ensure that it is being properly maintained.


As part of the cap installation, EPA removed large amounts of soil from the site area. EPA's goal was to remove as much soil as possible from the site in order to provide a more even foundation for the cap. During the soil removal project, EPA also uncovered a large quantity of buried railroad ties, which reportedly were from the construction of Philadelphia's 30th Street Station during the 1930s. These railroad ties were also removed from the site.

EPA removed 2,130 cubic yards of contaminated materials from the site; approximately 70% as contaminated soils and 30% as railroad ties.


EPA also constructed a new two-lane access drive to the businesses in the industrial park, and installed a new business directory sign for the industrial park.


At the request of the township, EPA replaced an old storm water drainage system next to the cap's edge. The township was concerned that the original drainage system might be inaccessible should the system need repairs after the cap was completed.


Two wells also were uncovered during the course of the cap installation process. One of these wells may have been used to dispose of liquid wastes in the past. EPA evaluated the wells and discovered that oil appeared in minimal amounts. To prevent the oil from seeping into the surrounding soils, EPA sealed both wells.


The air monitoring network that EPA set up to observe dust creation at the site indicated that a minimal amount of dust occurred throughout the construction process. On a few occasions during the cap construction, water sprays were used to minimize dust while contaminated soils were being excavated or scraped.


The cap has been designed to allow for the installation of a light industrial building on top of it if the owner is interested. This would keep the property in productive use, in accordance with the current zoning of this area. EPA is planning to install an additional four to five feet of clean soil over the cap to allow for potential construction of a building in the future. (EPA will not be constructing any buildings on the cap.) This work may begin in late May or early June, and will take from six to eight weeks. There will be trucks bringing clean soil to the site and construction equipment working on the site. No contaminated materials will be handled or disturbed at any time during this activity. Once completed, the capped area will be seeded with grass.


EPA is planning to sample surface water, sediments, and soils along Naylors Run. This sampling will determine the beneficial impact of the shallow ground water cleanup on the quality of Naylors Run. Extensive testing of Naylors Run before and after the cleanup system is installed will provide EPA with information on the improvements achieved by the system. The initial round of this sampling will be conducted in late spring or early summer, with another round planned for several months after the system is up and running.


EPA is finalizing plans to begin the construction of the ground water collection trench and treatment plant for the remediation of the shallow ground water under the site. A 250 foot collection trench (approximately 15 feet deep, filled with gravel) is planned for installation behind the Philadelphia Gum Factory. Two oil and water extraction wells will be installed along Eagle Road near the site, and a water treatment plant will be constructed on the former Lobb Lumber property. Construction of this system may begin this summer and is expected to take one year to complete. EPA will present the final plans to the township and will hold a public meeting to discuss this construction project prior to initiating the actual construction.

Questions or comments about the Havertown PCP Superfund Site?

Please contact one of the EPA contacts listed below:

Community Involvement Coordinator
Lisa Brown (3HW43)
U.S. EPA, Region III
1650 Arch St.
Philadelphia, PA 19103-2029
(215) 814-5528 or (800) 553-2509

Remedial Project Manager
Gregory Ham (3HW21)
U.S. EPA, Region III
1650 Arch St.
Philadelphia, PA 19103-2029

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