549 46th Avenue and 45-28 Vernon Boulevard, Long Island City, Queens, NY 11101

Long Island City

brownfield CVOCs VOCs "vapor intrusion"

549 46th Ave LLC, Pushcart Center
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Site Description[1]
This site was accepted into the Brownfield Cleanup Program (BCP) in September, 2008. The Paragon Paint site (located at 549 46th Ave. and 4540 Vernon Blvd, designated Block 26, Lot 4) currently includes a 4-story former paint manufacturing building connected to a 3-story warehouse with basement, and a 3-story garage. A paved shipping and receiving courtyard is accessed by a narrow driveway connected to 46th Ave along the western end of the warehouse building. Historically, the site had been used for industrial purposes for over 100 years, primarily as a paint manufacturing company. The property was developed by Paragon Paint Company between 1915 and 1923 and operated as a paint manufacturing facility until 1998. Prior to Paragon Paint, tenants of the property included Ward and Company's Lard Oil Works, which was part of the larger D.D. Williamsom Chemical Manufacturing and the Chalk Manufacturing Company. Little information regarding on-site operations prior to Paragon Paint Company is known. The property is currently inactive. The site is located in an industrial area that is characterized by a variety of warehouse, industrial service and light manufacturing businesses. The neighborhood mid-blocks contain many 3 and 4 story residential buildings. There are small 2 and 3 story mixed use residential/ commercial buildings adjacent to the southeast. Anable Basin is adjacent to the western portion of the northern boundary. Subsurface investigations indicate the presence of contaminants in subsurface soil, groundwater, and soil gas throughout the property. A soil vapor intrusion (SVI) investigation, to be conducted in adjacent properties, is proposed to address potential off-site exposure. An interim remedial measure work plan is being prepared for the removal of underground storage tanks (USTs) and associated contaminated soils. A Phase II Environmental Site Assessment and Additional Subsurface Investigation have been performed at the site (June 2006 and June 2007), however a full on-site Remedial Investigation is necessary to fully delineate the extent and nature of contamination.

Site Environmental Assessment
Subsurface investigations conducted through April 2007 on the Paragon Paint site indicated presence of contaminants in subsurface soil, groundwater, and soil vapor throughout the property. A total of thirteen (13) soil borings/groundwater monitoring wells and three interior sub-slab soil vapor sampling points were installed and sampled. Light non-aqueous phase liquid (LNAPL) was detected in 8 monitoring wells at thicknesses ranging from 0.1 feet to 6.3 feet. The LNAPL has been identified primarily as paint thinner and fuel oil. During the most recent sampling event (conducted May 2007), light non aqueous phase liquid (LNAPL) was observed in eight of the thirteen monitoring wells installed on site, at thicknesses up to 6.3 feet. The LNAPL was identified as primarily paint thinner. Weathered fuel oil was also identified in one monitoring well, MW-3. Due to the location and degree of weathering of the product, the source of the LNAPL appears to be the USTs. In the soil samples, volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and semi-volatile organic compounds (SVOCs) were detected at concentrations exceeding unrestricted use soil cleanup objectives (SCOs) across the site, in 7 of the 13 borings. VOCs detected at concentrations exceeding SCOs include ethylbenzene (detected up to 22 mg/kg); 1,2,4-trimethylbenene (detected up to 450 mg/kg); 1,3,5-trimethylbenze (detected up to 210 mg/kg); n-propylbenzene (detected up to 120 mg/kg); isopropylbenzene (detected up to 60 mg/kg); and naphthalene (detected up to 48 mg/kg). SVOCs detected at concentrations exceeding SCOs include benzo(a)pyrene (detected up to 5.9 mg/kg); benzo(a)anthracene (detected up to 7.1 mg/kg); and benzo(b)fluoranthene (detected up to 5.9 mg/kg). Contamination was detected both at the water table interface as well as in deeper, saturated soils. It should be noted that due to high concentrations, dilution of the samples for analysis resulted in detection limits greater than SCOs for several contaminants. Groundwater samples were collected from the 5 monitoring wells which did not contain LNAPL (as described above). VOCs detected in groundwater samples at levels exceeding TOGS 1.1.1 Ambient Water Quality Standards (AWQS) include: isopropylbenzene (detected up to 87 µg/L); isopropyltoluene (detected up to 8.9 µg/L); n-butylbenzene (detected up to 36 µg/L); n-propylbenzene (detected up to 82 µg/L); naphthalene (detected up to 20 µg/L); sec-butylbenzene (detected up to 280 µg/L); and tert-butylbenzene (detected up to 98 µg/L). Hydrocarbon, alcohol, and solvent-related compounds were detected in sub-slab soil vapor and indoor air samples, which were performed in the area of the former paint factory. Hydrocarbon compounds detected at elevated levels include 1,2,4-trimethylbenzene, ethylbenzene, toluene, xylenes, propylene and MTBE, and ranged in concentration from 2.68 µg/m3 (1,2,4-trimethylbenzene) to 39.5 µg/m3 (MTBE). Alcohol compounds included ethanol and isopropanol and were detected at concentrations ranging from 1.3 µg/m3 (isopropanol) to 92.4 µg/m3 (ethanol). Solvent-related compounds include 1,2,4-trichlorobenzene, MEK, acetone, methylene chloride, n-heptane, and tetrahydrofuran and ranged in concentration from 2.34 µg/m3 (n-heptane in indoor air) to 69.2 µg/m3 of methylene chloride. An additional soil vapor intrusion (SVI) investigation, to be conducted in adjacent residential properties, is proposed to assess potential off-site exposure. The property is adjacent to mixed-use residential and commercial buildings. An on-site Remedial Investigation is needed to fully delineate the extent of contamination. More information regarding the site can be found in the documents placed in the Site Document Repositories.

Site Health Assessment
Ingestion of site-related contaminants in drinking water is not expected since the area is served with municipal water. Contact with sub-surface contaminated soil is not expected since the area is covered with concrete and building foundations. Inhalation of site-related contaminants in indoor air via vapor intrusion is a potential exposure pathway for both on-site and off-site structures. Further investigation of this exposure pathway is on-going.

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