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Austin Avenue Radiation

Fact Sheet: May 1996

EPA produced this update to keep community members apprised of recent work at the site and work projected for the near future. EPA will produce updates monthly and mail them to all those on the site mailing list. Community members may request to be added or removed from the site mailing list by calling 1-800/553-2509, toll-free, and leaving a message containing the appropriate information.

The Superfund Remedial Program is currently conducting work at the Austin Avenue Site. This phase of the cleanup includes 21 properties in five municipalities of Delaware County which are contaminated with radioactive materials. Experienced project personnel are conducting demolition and disposal activities in a carefully controlled manner. EPA is the lead agency responsible for managing the cleanup. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), in cooperation with EPA, maintains a full-time presence at the site and oversees all work by contractors. Argonne National Laboratories, an affiliate of the U.S. Department of Energy and the University of Chicago, also maintains a full-time presence at the site to conduct and oversee radiologic monitoring.

Recent Work

Demolition and rebuilding activities continue at properties on Wayne Avenue, East Plumstead Avenue, and Harper Avenue and renovation activities are ongoing at a property on Owen Avenue. Contaminated soils and demolition wastes are being transported to the former warehouse site at Austin and Union Avenues to be packaged and stored for disposal or shipped off-site, as appropriate. To date, 47 railcars containing contaminated soil and building debris have been shipped out of state for disposal. Uncontaminated demolition wastes have been shipped directly to off-site disposal facilities.

216, 218, and 219 Wayne Avenue, Lansdowne - Each of the structures at these properties have been completely dismantled. In addition, the foundations at these properties were excavated. After a short delay because of wet soil conditions, rebuilding activities, including placing new footers and building new foundations, began at 216 and 218 Wayne. After a final inspection by Argonne Laboratories, the foundation work at 219 Wayne will begin.

6, 10, and 16 East Plumstead Avenue, Lansdowne - All of the structures at these properties have been dismantled. Soils contaminated with radioactive materials have been excavated and cleanup verification surveys are forthcoming.

346 Owen Avenue, Upper Darby - Contaminated soil was removed and final sampling was conducted to determine if any contamination remains in the soil. A final report from Argonne Laboratories will be reviewed before renovation activities begin.

500 Harper Avenue, Upper Darby - Security was increased in the area of 500 Harper to ensure that vandalism on the property does not continue. Interior dismantlement and the removal of asbestos-containing material was completed. In addition, exterior dismantlement, including the roof and stone walls, began at the property.

64 South Clifton Avenue, Aldan - Security fencing has been installed around the property.

Projected Work for June

Rebuilding activities will continue on the Wayne Avenue properties. Renovation activities will begin at 346 Owen Avenue and the dismantlement of 500 Harper Avenue will continue. Dismantlement activities will begin at 64 South Clifton Avenue. Security fencing will be installed and preparatory work will be completed at 3723 Huey Avenue in Upper Darby. The preparatory work includes ground clearing, soil sampling, property inspections, and radiological surveys.

EPA will continue to maintain daily contact with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to discuss work progress and address issues as they arise. Project meetings between EPA, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Argonne National Laboratories, and Sevenson Environmental Services will continue on a weekly basis and site safety meetings will continue to be held daily. Off-site air monitoring will be conducted continuously and perimeter and personnel air-monitoring will be conducted whenever work is in progress. Security guards will continue to maintain 24-hour security in the areas around the affected properties.

Follow-up inspections will continue at all properties to ensure that all abatement, remedial, and construction activities are performed in accordance with EPA requirements.

Additional Information

If you are considering buying or selling local real estate, you may request a copy of EPA's "Information Sheet for Realtors, Sellers & Prospective Buyers." To help buyers and sellers reach informed conclusions, this document provides an easy-to-read discussion of the history of the Austin Avenue Superfund Site, its current impact on local communities, and the steps EPA has taken to ensure a safe site cleanup. For a copy of this information sheet, please contact Carrie Deitzel at either of the phone numbers listed below or check the appropriate area on the mailing list form and return it to EPA at the address provided.

Field Office Location:
South Union Avenue at Austin Avenue
Monday - Friday 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Austin Avenue Project Contacts

EPA Community Involvement Coordinator
Carrie Deitzel

EPA Remedial Project Manager
Dave Turner

Tim Gallagher

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