Water Quality Assurance Revolving Fund (WQARF) Site

West Central Phoenix (WCP) East Grand Avenue

Community Involvement Activities Public Health Impact Site Hydrogeology
Contacts Public Meeting Calendar Site Map
Contaminants Public Notice Calendar Site Status Update
Online Information Repository Site History

The WCP East Grand Avenue WQARF site is located in Phoenix, Arizona. The contaminated groundwater plume is bounded approximately by Whitton Avenue to the north, Earll Drive to the south, 27th Avenue to the east, and 33rd Avenue to the west.

The plume boundaries depicted on the site map represent the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality’s (ADEQ) interpretation of the data available at the time the map was constructed. The map is intended to provide the public with basic information, as to the estimated extent of known contamination as of the date of map production. The actual extent of contamination may be different. Therefore, the plume boundaries may change in the future as new information becomes available.

Soil Vapor Extraction System at VW&R facility

Site Status Update:

In Sept. 2013, Univar shut down  the soil vapor extraction (SVE) system at the former Van Waters and Rogers (VW&R) facility. Univar (parent company of VW&R) shut down the SVE system due to an insufficient return of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) during recent operation.   To date, the system has removed approximately 1,200 pounds of VOCs.  Groundwater monitoring is conducted by Univar every six months. Monitoring of the contamination plume has shown a decrease in contaminant concentration.

Univar is conducting the feasibility study (FS) to evaluate specific remedial measures and strategies required to meet the remedial objectives (ROs).

Community Involvement Activities:

A community advisory board (CAB) has been formed for the site. These meetings are open to the public. Details of meeting agendas and minutes can be viewed at the ADEQ website. 

Site History:

1957 - 1970: The former VW&R facility is the primary source of contamination at the site. VW&R operated near 27th Avenue and Osborn Road from 1957 to 1970.  Operations included warehousing, distribution of industrial, agricultural chemical products, upholstery supplies, laundry, and dry cleaning supplies. 

1982 - 2000: VOCs were first detected in groundwater in the WCP area in July. The City of Phoenix (COP) detected trichloroethene (TCE) in four municipal public supply wells, COP #70, #71, #151, and #152.  The Arizona Department of Health Services, Salt River Project, and the COP confirmed the presence of VOCs in the groundwater with sampling in 1983, 1985, and 1986. Groundwater from COP wells #70 and #71 contained the highest concentrations of TCE and, therefore, were immediately shut down. Wells #151 and #152 were monitored for VOC concentrations from 1982 until 1989. As a result of sampling conducted during February of 1989, COP elected to take both wells #151 and #152 off-line on March 7, 1989.

In 1987, the WCP area was designated a WQARF priority list site. In 1997, ADEQ established the WQARF Registry, which replaced the priority list. The site was placed on the WQARF Registry in April 1998 with a score of 26 out of a possible 120. The site score was re-evaluated in 2000 with a revised score of 31.

1993 - 2002: The remedial investigation (RI) field activities at this site were conducted between 1993 and 2002. In January 2002, ADEQ entered into an agreement with Univar (parent company of VW&R) to conduct the monitoring groundwater quality and to conduct the FS.

2003: Since March, groundwater monitoring has been conducted by Univar. Also, Univar installed an SVE system at the former VW&R facility to clean up the soils. 

2004: The SVE system became operational in January. ADEQ issued the draft remedial investigation (RI) report in May. The RI was centered on the former VW&R facility.

2006: In January, ADEQ issued the proposed RO report for public comment to meet the requirements established under Arizona Administrative Code (A.A.C.) R18-16-406. ADEQ issued the final RO report in June. The final RI report for the site was issued in July.

2007: The total quantity of VOCs removed from the soil by the SVE system operated was approximately 990 pounds. This equates to approximately 80 gallons of VOCs that were removed from the soil.

2008: Two ADEQ monitor wells that were located in the COP right-of-way were added to the SVE extraction system to increase the capture of the VOCs. These wells had become dry, due to the regional drop in groundwater levels.

2009: The SVE system continues to extract VOCs from the soils below the former facility. The system removed approximately four pounds of VOCs for the first nine months of this year. Groundwater samples were collected semi-annually.

2010: VOCs continue to be extracted from the soils below the former facility through the operation of the SVE system. The system removed a monthly average of approximately 2.5 pounds of VOCs. Groundwater samples were collected semi-annually.

2011: The SVE system removed an average of approximately 1.4 pounds of VOCs monthly. Groundwater monitoring and sampling were conducted in March and September.

2012: The SVE system removed an average of approximately 1 pound of VOCs monthly. Groundwater monitoring and sampling were conducted in March.

2013: In September, Univar shut down the SVE system due to insufficient return of VOCs. Groundwater monitoring and sampling were conducted in March and September.

2014: Groundwater monitoring and sampling were conducted in March and September.


The current contaminants of concern in groundwater include the chlorinated solvents tetrachloroethene (PCE), TCE and 1,1-dichloroethene (1,1-DCE). Contaminants of concern at the site may change as new data become available. Other contaminants at the site include benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, and nitrates.

Public Health Impact:

To date, testing in the WCP area indicates no exposure to the contamination. Sampling shows that the contaminated soils are under asphalt parking lots or asphalt-surfaced storage areas, or under the concrete floors of buildings. Contaminated drinking water wells in the area have been shut down. In addition, notices have been sent out to all known residences within the WCP area for the testing of domestic wells for contamination.

Site Hydrogeology:

The site is located within the West Salt River Valley sub-basin of the Phoenix Active Management Area. The Salt River Valley is an alluvial filled basin located in the basin and range physiographic province. The site is underlain by primarily sandy silts and silty sands, with interbedded clay layers and gravelly sand zones.

Due principally to the ongoing drought, depth to groundwater has declined considerably in the past several years. In 1997, the depth to groundwater was approximately 105 feet below ground surface (bgs), and by 2002 it was approximately 123 feet bgs.  Depth to groundwater as of March 2004 was 130 feet to 139 feet bgs.  Depths to groundwater currently range from approximately 120 feet to 143 feet bgs. Groundwater flow is to the south-southwest beneath the site.

The Grand Canal is located along the northern edge of the site. The Grand Canal is generally lined on the bottom and both sides in the vicinity of the site. However, some recharge to the aquifer occurs due to infiltration from the canal.


Name Phone/Fax E-mail
Kevin Snyder, ADEQ Project Manager (602) 771-4186*/ (602) 771-4138 fax [email protected]
Wendy Flood, ADEQ Community Involvement Coordinator (602) 771-4410*/(602) 771-4236 fax [email protected]

*In Arizona, but outside the Phoenix area, call toll-free at (800) 234-5677.

Online Information Repository:

Interested parties can review site information here on this page and at the ADEQ Record Center located at 1110 W. Washington Street, Phoenix, Arizona. Please contact (602) 771-4380 or (800) 234-5677 ext. 6027714380 for hours of operation and to schedule an appointment. To review site information at a location near you, please contact the designated Community Involvement Coordinator.

Site Map

Fact Sheet

Map of all West Central Phoenix Plumes

Community Involvement Plan

Feasibility Study (FS) Work Plan

Public Notice

Final Remedial Investigation Report

Registry Report

CAB Meeting Agendas and Minutes