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Garden State Cleaners
EPA ID#: NJD053280160
EPA REGION 2
Congressional District(s): 02
Site Description: Garden State Cleaners (GSC) is an active commercial dry cleaning facility that has been operating since 1969. In 1984, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) conducted an investigation that detected high levels of the volatile organic compounds (VOCs) tetrachloroethylene (PCE) and trichloroethylene (TCE) in the soils around the faciltiy. The GSC site is located approximately 500 feet south of another Superfund site, the South Jersey Clothing Company (SJCC) Superfund site. High levels of PCE and TCE were also found in wells adjacent to and down gradient from these two Superfund Sites. As a result, some residential private wells were closed and the Borough had to construct a new municipal water supply system. Approximately 9,000 people obtain drinking water, and 3,800 acres of farmland are irrigated, from wells within 3 miles of the site. The GSC and SJCC sites were addressed jointly due to their proximity to one another and similar contamination.
Site Responsibility: This site is being addressed through Federal actions.
Threat and Contaminants: Groundwater is contaminated with VOCs, primarily PCE and TCE. Use of contaminated groundwater for domestic purposes and agricultural irrigation may pose a health threat. NJDEP has set up a groundwater "Classification Exception Area" (CEA) to restrict groundwater use in the area of the contaminant plume. Private residences located within the borough boundary downgradient from the sites are connected to the municipal water supply system.
Cleanup Approach: EPA has addressed cleanup of the site in two phases. For the first phase, in spring 1994, EPA installed a small-scale soil vapor extraction (SVE) system; operation of the system began in June 1994. In March 1995, with the cleanup objectives met, EPA removed the SVE system. The second phase involved cleanup of the contaminated goundwater plume. EPA conducted this work in conjunction with the SJCC Superfund Site. In August 1995, EPA completed a design for the extraction and treatment of the contaminated groundwater. In fall 1997, EPA started construction of the system. EPA has been operating the groundwater extraction and treatment system since February 1999.
Entire Site: EPA began an intensive investigation of the sites in 1989 to determine the nature and extent of contamination and to identify alternatives for cleanup of the sites. In September 1991, based on the results of the investigation, EPA signed a Record of Decision selecting the following remedy: (1) in-situ treatment of contaminated soil via the vapor extraction process; (2) extraction of groundwater with concentrations of VOCs above cleanup levels; (3) treatment of groundwater with an on-site air stripping column and carbon adsorption units; (4) reinjection of the treated water into the aquifer; and (5) long-term monitoring of groundwater. Recent investigations indicated that the SVE system did not completely remove all of the sources of groundwater contamination. Soil contaminated with PCE remains above the cleanup criteria, mainly underneath the Garden State Cleaners building. As a result, the Record of Decision was amended in September 2010. The amended remedy includes acquisition and demolition of the Garden State Cleaners building, excavation of the contaminated soil, and in-situ treatment of soil that cannot be practicably excavated.
Site Facts: Based on information obtained from the site owners and other sources, EPA determined that GSC is neither financially nor technically capable of undertaking the remedial actions chosen. Instead, EPA is conducting the required work using Trust Fund monies.
Cleanup Progress: In March 1995, EPA completed the cleanup of the contaminated soils at the Site. In August 1995, EPA completed a design for the extraction and treatment of the contaminated groundwater. In fall 1997, EPA started construction of the system. EPA has been operating the groundwater extraction and treatment system since February 1999. The groundwater extraction and treatment system is currently treating over 400 gallons of contaminated groundwater per minute, and discharging the treated water back into the aquifer. In 2006 and 2007, EPA added three additional groundwater extraction wells. In 2010, EPA started remedial design activities for the additional source clean up. In 2011, as part of a national pilot program to accelerate the pace of cleanups, EPA acquired the Garden State Cleaners property and demolished the building to facilitate excavation of contaminated soil beneath the building. Excavation of the contaminated soil was completed in September 2011.
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