West Van Buren
The West Van Buren WQARF site is located in the western portion of Phoenix, Arizona. The site is bounded approximately to the north by West McDowell Road, to the east by 7th Avenue, to the south by West Lower Buckeye Road, and to the west by 75th Avenue. In addition, a finger shaped plume exists from approximately West Buckeye Road and South 41st Avenue to West Watkins Street and South 11th Avenue.
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.
More than 50 monitor wells have been installed to further delineate the plume for an approximate total of 123 groundwater monitor wells. Groundwater monitoring and sampling is currently conducted on a semiannual basis generally in March and September.
The final remedial investigation (RI) report was completed in August 2012. An early response action (ERA) has been proposed by the Roosevelt Irrigation District (RID) and conditionally approved by ADEQ. Two interested parties, RID and the West Van Buren Working Group (WVBWG), submitted individual draft feasibility studies (FSs) reports in July 2014. The FS reports were developed as part of the WQARF process that follows completion of the RI.
1987: The November 13 Decision Record created the Van Buren Tank Farm WQARF area. The amended decision record dated December 11 changed the name to West Van Buren.
1996: On September 20, Univar entered into Consent Order W-109-96 with ADEQ.
1997: Maricopa County began SVE system operation. After six months of operation, soil containment levels were reduced below the regulatory standards. In May, American Linen Supply Company (ALSCo), 720 W. Buchanan Street, settled with ADEQ for $2 million dollars.
1998: In April, West Van Buren (WVB) was placed on the WQARF Registry with an Eligibility and Evaluation score of 50 out of a possible 120. In October, Dolphin Incorporated (Dolphin), 740 S. 59th Avenue, began operation of SVE and air sparge systems at their facility.
2000: In 2000, Reynolds Metals (now ALCOA), between 35th Avenue and 43rd Avenue and West Van Buren Street and Southern Pacific Railroad right-of-way, excavated and removed contaminated soil from their site and received a No Further Action (NFA) for soils in specific areas from ADEQ. In January, Dolphin entered into RCRA Consent Order Z-2-00. Consent Judgment CV 2000-001824 was filed.
2001: In March, ADEQ/ALSCo began an Early Response Action (ERA) utilizing SVE, air sparge and groundwater pump and treat systems. Union Pacific Railroad Company and Maricopa County settled with ADEQ for $450,000.
2002: In June, Reynolds/Alcoa settled with ADEQ for $1.96 million. In August, Univar received a NFA determination for soil from ADEQ and the Univar Consent Order W-109-96 was terminated by ADEQ. By October, the ALSCo SVE system had removed over 900 pounds of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from the soil and the system operation was ceased. In December, Dolphin ceased remedial system operation and conducted rebound testing.
2003: The ALSCo ERA groundwater pump and treat system ceased operation in September after treating approximately 118 million gallons of groundwater.
2004: In April, Dolphin completed rebound testing and received ADEQ authorization for SVE system shut down.
2006: In September, ADEQ installed seven monitor wells and sampled 125 groundwater monitor wells as part of the semi-annual sampling process. Dolphin satisfied the Consent Order and Consent Judgment, which were closed on June 6.
2007: A new Land and Water Use Questionnaire was sent to stakeholders to update the Land and Water Use Study completed in October 2001. In June, ADEQ completed installation of six groundwater monitor wells. Air Liquide USA, LLC and Air Liquide America Specialty Gases, LLC (Air Liquide) signed a Consent Order to continue conducting investigation work on their property.
2008: Three monitor wells were installed by ADEQ to help delineate the extent of the groundwater contamination and to further investigate potential source areas. Air Liquide completed the installation of four groundwater monitor wells and conducted quarterly groundwater sampling. Prudential Overall Supply (Prudential) signed a Consent Order to continue investigating soil and groundwater at their facility. Prudential also conducted a passive soil gas survey at their facility in May and June and installed three groundwater monitor wells in July. Water levels were measured monthly and groundwater samples were collected in August and September.
2009: Air Liquide and Prudential continued to do work under consent orders. ADEQ solicited comments for the remedial objectives (ROs) of West Van Buren . ADEQ signed a working agreement with RID to review its regional groundwater ERA proposal.
2010: Groundwater monitoring and sampling was conducted in June and September. Groundwater sampling of RID wells and surface sampling of RID canals was also conducted in June. Prudential performed a pilot test to determine if SVE would be suitable for soil remediation. ADEQ conditionally approved RID’s ERA on June 24.
2011: Groundwater monitoring and sampling was conducted in March and September. Groundwater sampling of RID wells and surface sampling of RID canals was also conducted in April and September. Prudential began installation of a SVE system to remediate soils beneath the facility. RID began a pilot test at RID well RID-95 to observe and study the effects of VOCs in groundwater on granular activated carbon (GAC).
2012: Groundwater monitoring and sampling was conducted in March and September. Air Liquide finalized a SVE pilot test work plan in March and conducted testing in June. The Remedial Investigation (RI) was completed for West Van Buren in August. RID submitted a modified ERA in October.
2013: Groundwater monitoring and sampling was conducted in March and September. Groundwater sampling of RID wells and surface sampling of RID canals was conducted in April and September. ADEQ conditionally approved RID’s ERA on February 1. Prudential began operation of a SVE system in December to remediate soils beneath the facility. ADEQ signed a working agreement with the West Van Buren Working Group (WVBWG) to review their regional feasibility study (FS) work plan. RID submitted a separate regional FS work plan for approval. ADEQ solicited public comments on the FSs. RID and the WVBWG have begun conducting two FSs. Penn Racquet Sports, Inc., (Penn), 306 South 45th Avenue, settled with ADEQ for $30,000 dollars under Consent Decree 13-01631.
2014: Groundwater monitoring and sampling was conducted in March. Groundwater sampling of RID wells and surface sampling of RID canals was conducted in March. Three new monitor wells were installed by ADEQ to help delineate the extent of the groundwater contamination and to investigate potential source areas. Air Liquide continued to monitor groundwater conditions underneath their facility. Prudential continued to operate their SVE system and monitor groundwater conditions below their facility. The operations and maintenance manual (O&M) for RID’s modified ERA was put out for pubic comment in June. The WVBWG and RID submitted individual regional FS reports for WVB in July.
The current contaminants of concern in groundwater include tetrachloroethene (PCE), trichloroethene (TCE), 1,1,1-trichloroethane (1,1,1-TCA), 1,1-dichloroethane (1,1-DCA), cis-1,2-dichloroethene (cis-1,2-DCE), 1,1-dichloroethene (1,1-DCE) and chromium. Contaminants of concern at the site may change as new data become available.
Municipal groundwater in the area is not used for drinking water purposes. The area is served by the City of Phoenix municipal water system or other regulated systems. If you own a private well, are using that well for drinking water, live within the site boundaries, and have not had your well tested, please contact the ADEQ Project Manager.
The WVB is within the basin and range physiographic province and is generally characterized as a series of extended terrains. The basin and range province consists of high-angle normal faulting which created broad basins and surrounding mountain ranges. Historically, the Gila, Salt and Aqua Fria River system influenced the WVB. However, due to upstream reclamation projects, these streams are no longer perennial and the river system influence has declined.
The aquifer is divided into three sections: the upper alluvial unit (UAU), middle alluvial unit (MAU) and the lower alluvial unit (LAU). Contamination in the site to date has been limited to the UAU and the MAU.
The UAU is composed primarily of coarse-grained sediment deposited by the ancestral Salt River. The UAU extends from the surface to approximately 200 feet below ground surface (bgs) in the eastern portion of the site and to approximately 400 feet bgs in the western portion of the site.
The MAU is composed of thick sequences of clay, silt and sand with some interbedded gravel and cobbles lens. The MAU is approximately 100 feet thick in the eastern portion of the site and approximately 500 feet thick in the western portion of the site.
As of Sept. 2006, the water level in the aquifer was approximately 98 feet bgs in the eastern portion of the site and 130 feet bgs in the western portion of the site. As of March 2013, the water level in the UAU aquifer was approximately 95 feet bgs in the eastern portion of the site and 105 feet bgs in the western portion of the site. Water levels are influenced by pumping and drought conditions. Multiple sources are responsible for the commingled plume of contaminated groundwater. Contaminated groundwater also enters the site from the north and the east.
*In Arizona, but outside the Phoenix area, call toll-free at (800) 234-5677.
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.