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Hazardous Waste Cleanup: Cyclops Corporation (Formerly: Pittsburgh Industrial Plating) in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

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On November 15, 1980, Cyclops submitted a Part A Hazardous Waste Permit Application to USEP A. On December 22, 1980, the USEPA ID: PAD087569620 was assigned. A firm called PIP (Pittsburgh Industrial Plating) , located at One Herron Avenue, was also assigned USEPA ID: PAD987397148 in 1995. On May 21, 1997, PIP wished to retire the latter ID that was issued in 1995. However, both EPA IDs are associated with the same location at 1 Herron A venue. Under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) info Facility Information for PAD087569620, PIP is still associated with that EPA ID as Large Quantity Generator (LQG) (active), although PIP does not own or operate the facility any longer and no waste generation activities currently exist at the location.

Cleanup Status

On August 13, 2013, the Environmental Indicator for Current Human Exposures Under Control was a Yes. On August 13, 2013, the Environmental Indicator for Migration of Contaminated Groundwater Under Control was a Yes.  In August 2017, EPA determined environmental remediation (Corrective Action) was complete complete with Institutional Controls.  and the following Institutional Controls on the land use restrictions be implemented through an Environmental Covenant at the Facility:
I) The Facility property shall not be used for residential purpose unless it is demonstrated to EPA that such use will not pose a threat to human health and EPA provides prior written approval of such use.
2) Any excavation or other construction activity within the footprint of contaminated areas at the Facility shall employ measures to protect workers from unacceptable exposure to contaminants.
3) The Facility property shall not use groundwater unless it is demonstrated to EPA that such use will not pose a threat to human health and EPA provides prior written approval of such use.

Cleanup Background

Benzene was detected at 265 ug/L due to a release from a former gasoline underground storage tank (UST).  The groundwater at the site has not formally received non-use aquifer, however the facility and surrounding properties are on public water.  The Buyer covenants in the Consent Order & Agreement (CO&A) included not to use the groundwater for any consumptive use. Solid Waste Management Units (SWMUs) #4 and #5 had Benzene above the limit, SWMU-3 which is down gradient of the source area did not contain petroleum compounds.  September 24, 1996, PADEP stated the requirements of the CO&A have been met, the groundwater to surface water pathway is not relevant. 

After approximately 250 tons of soil was excavated, treated and re-introduced into the excavation as clean backfill.  Confirmation soil samples analyzed for total petroleum hydrocarbon (TPH) and benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, and xylenes (BTEX) following the source area remediation showed that these constituents were less than analytical detection limits or were well below Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (PADEP) generic groundwater protection levels. Two sampling locations were above the Act 2 soil-to-groundwater MSC for used aquifers, soil is capped beneath the building and cyanide was not detected in groundwater above the MSCs.  Benzene in soil was detected in soil sampling location at 10-12 feet bgs in the underground storage tank (UST) area that exceeded the used aquifer soil-to groundwater MSC.  The exceedance is located outdoors adjacent to the building and is capped by an asphalt parking area.

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Site Description

Interactive Map of Cyclops Corporation, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania


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The facility is situated on approximately five acres of land along Herron Ave in Pittsburg, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania.  There are two buildings located on site. Building one is now a mixture of office, flex space, light industrial and warehouse/distribution.  Building two is now used to store virgin chemicals. 

From 1934 to 1995, the facility was operated by the Cyclops Corporation which manufactured industrial metal building panels. Some documents state that E.G. Smith Construction Products owned the site along with Cyclops. In 1993 the property was transferred to Smith Steelite. John Maneely Company, which did business as Pittsburg Industrial Plating (PIP), purchased the facility in 1995. PIP operated from 1995 until 2002. No operations were active at the facility until 2006, when Sampson Morris Group purchased and redeveloped the property. Sampson Morris is a commercial real estate development and property management organization that specializes in the purchase and repositioning of office and warehouse properties in western Pennsylvania. The current facility tenants include: McCarthy Tire Company, Pittsburgh Poison Cheerleading Studio, Game Fly (video game rental company), and RAS Appliance (refrigerator and appliance shipper).

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Contaminants at this Facility

 Primary concern was benzene from former underground storage tanks.  

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Institutional and Engineering Controls at this Facility

     Institutional Controls on the land use restrictions at the Facility consist of:
    I. The Facility property shall not be used for residential purpose unless it is demonstrated to EPA that such use will not pose a threat to human health and EPA provides prior written approval of such use.
    2. Any excavation or other construction activity within the footprint of contaminated areas at the Facility shall employ measures to protect workers from unacceptable exposure to contaminants.
    3. The Facility property shall not use groundwater unless it is demonstrated to EPA that such use will not pose a threat to human health and EPA provides prior written approval of such use.

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    Land Reuse Information at this Facility

    The facility is being reused.

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    Site Responsibility at this Facility

    RCRA Corrective Action activities at this facility have been conducted under the direction of EPA Region 3 with assistance from Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection.

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