We highlighted "Closure Corner" on the W&M website because we strongly believe that closing sites, more than anything else, defines our company. All talk and marketing materials aside, getting projects completed is what you're looking for and it speaks volumes of what we can do for you. So we have provided below a few examples of sites closed by W&M.
– Michael Whitehead, CEO
Large Manufacturing Client Receives Certificate of Completion
A large manufacturing client of W&M's in central Houston, TX received a Certificate of Completion from the TCEQ for a portion of a 100 acre property. A response action was conducted in March of 2013, consisting of the excavation and removal of soils impacted with lead, copper and thallium. Excavated soils were taken off-site for recycling .
Confirmation samples collected from the various source areas demonstrated that impacted soils exceeding regulatory limits for Tl, Cu, and Pb were removed. Confirmation sampling verified that remaining in place soil concentrations were below Texas Risk Reduction Program Protective Concentration Levels. The removal action has been effective in removing impacted soil exceeding critical limits allowing the, once industrial property, to be developed for residential use.
MSD in Houston Ship Channel
W&M obtained a Municipal Setting Designation (MSD) for a Houston ship channel client. The MSD was complicated due to the close proximity of the San Jacinto River and water supply wells. W&M was able to prove that the contaminants that were released from past practices would not impact either the river or the water supply wells. For more information contact Gene Murray or Andy Adams.
Two No Further Action Letters Obtained for LPST Sites in Houston Area
W&M obtained two No Further Action letters for Leaking Petroleum Storage Tank (LPST) sites located in the greater Houston area. One, a telecommunications service operations center, was particularly complicated by off-site migration and potential receptors in the vicinity of the site. The second site was associated with a former underground storage tank used to power a backup emergency generator for a call center. W&M closed both sites ahead of schedule and under budget, exceeding the client’s expectations. For more information, contact Nic Andreani (512-493-9696).
W&M Obtains Site Closure for Oil and Lube Center in Cedar Hill
W&M’s Client, a local oil and lube center, obtained regulatory closure through the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) Leaking Underground Storage Tank (LPST) Program. The regulatory closure removes the Client from quarterly monitoring responsibilities. W&M worked closely with the TCEQ coordinator on the site. The site had significant issues with co-mingled plumes, Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) metals being detected in the groundwater. With diligent work with the TCEQ coordinator, W&M was able to deliver regulatory closure and eliminate the need for further monitoring, which was scheduled at a significant cost savings of approximately 50% of the existing budget. For more information on LPST Closures or other site concerns, contact Andy Adams (713-316-0025).
NFA Letter Issued for Dallas Church
W&M helped a non-profit religious organization in West Dallas receive regulatory closure for a property they intend to acquire for construction of a community Church. The property had been investigated in 2004 on behalf of another non-profit entity under the TCEQ’s Brownfields site Assessment (BSA) Program. Although the property was eligible for closure at that time, the acquisition fell through and the property remained undeveloped. W&M completed a Phase I Environmental Assessment on behalf of the City of Dallas under their EPA Brownfields Grant, and subsequently submitted the updated environmental information along with a new BSA Application to TCEQ on behalf of the church. The TCEQ issued a No Further Action letter in late December 2009, which allowed the acquisition and development to proceed. For more information, contact Frank Clark (972-509-9611).
Persistence Pays Off and Saves Client Money
W&M worked with the TCEQ to reduce the frequency of groundwater monitoring events required for a former battery disposal facility (site) in north Texas. The site is currently in the TCEQ Voluntary Cleanup Program (VCP) and was granted a Conditional Certificate of Completion. In 2002, the TCEQ requested quarterly groundwater monitoring events to ensure that chemicals of concern (COCs) were not migrating off-site. W&M was successful in negotiating a reduced monitoring frequency from quarterly to semi-annual monitoring after two and a half years, semi-annual to annual after three and half years, and eventually down to once every three years. Based on the number of monitoring wells at the site, we estimate that W&M has already saved our client $40,000 ($4,000 per monitoring event) and will save our client an additional $148,000 over the next 10 years. Our work at this site as a client advocate shows that “persistence pays off”. For more information, contact Michael Whitehead (972-516-0300).
Tank Removal and No Further Action (NFA) in Plano, TX
W&M assisted an industrial client with the rapid removal and administrative closure of an underground petroleum storage tank (PST) site located in Plano. During the process of updating the fuel tank registration, the client determined that the best course of action was to remove the tank from the ground. W&M coordinated and supervised the tank removal this summer. Confirmation sampling identified relatively low concentrations of petroleum related compounds (petroleum hydrocarbons and BTEX) in the soil and groundwater. W&M filed a Release Determination Report (RDR) and recommended no further action. As a result, the site received a “No Further Action” letter from the TCEQ within four months of the tank removal. For further information contact Gene Murray (972-516-0300) or Aaron Brewer (512-501-4085).
LPST Closure in Garland
W&M assisted an industrial client with the rapid closure of a Leaking Petroleum Storage Tank (LPST) site located in Garland. During the process of updating the fuel tank registration, the client determined that the best course of action was to remove the tank from the ground. W&M coordinated and supervised the tank removal this summer. Confirmation sampling identified relatively low concentrations of petroleum related compounds (petroleum hydrocarbons and BTEX) in the soil and groundwater. W&M filed a Release Determination Report (RDR) that was supplemented with data from one monitoring well. As a result, the site received a closure letter from the TCEQ only three months from the time the tank was removed. For more information, contact Michael Whitehead (972-509-9608).
W&M Obtains Voluntary Cleanup Program Certificate of Completion for Prominent Downtown Building
W&M’s Client, a national pension plan, obtained regulatory closure through the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) Voluntary Cleanup Program (VCP) by the issuance of a Certificate of Completion (COC). The COC ensures that, upon selling property, the new owner and/or lender are free from environmental liability from the State of Texas. The client was initially headed towards closure through the use of a Municipal Setting Designation (MSD). After some initial work at the site, W&M proposed a plan for closure by using a Class 3 groundwater bearing unit (GWBU) instead of using an MSD. A Class 3 GWBU is applicable when the quality or quantity of groundwater is insufficient to supply drinking water at the site. By implementing a Class 3 GWBU and working closely with the TCEQ coordinator, W&M was able to deliver the COC within nine months of signing the contract. By eliminating the need for an MSD, W&M reduced the time to closure by approximately a year. The total project time was nine months. W&M delivered regulatory closure ahead of schedule and at a significant cost savings. For more information on VCP Closures, Class 3 GWBUs, Municipal Setting Designations, or other site concerns contact Andy Adams (713-316-0025).
Closure Certificate Issued for Health Care Development Property in North Dallas
W&M has been working with the developer of a former retail strip center in North Dallas to seek closure for subsurface contamination discovered during pre-acquisition site investigations. The property formerly contained some retail and office tenants, including a small dry cleaner business. The dry cleaning solvent perchloroethylene (PCE) and its daughter products were identified in soil in the vicinity of the dry cleaner suite, but no significant groundwater impacts were observed. W&M performed aquifer testing to establish a Class 3 groundwater bearing unit was located beneath the site area, therefore restricting the practical use of groundwater due to low yield. With the approval of the Class 3 designation, both soil and groundwater cleanup targets were adjusted, and no response actions were required. The site received a letter authorizing closure in September 2009, and construction has started on a new health care facility at the property. For more information, contact Michael Whitehead (972-509-9608) or Frank W. Clark, P.E. (972-509-9611).
W&M Helps Client Receive Closure for Former Auto Dealership in Houston
W&M’s California client recently received approval for the final closure of soil and groundwater impacts at a former auto dealership located in Houston. The property was used for over 30 years for auto sales and repair. Contamination by petroleum hydrocarbons and chlorinated solvents was discovered during site redevelopment in the areas of former hydraulic lifts and an oil/water separator. Response actions at that time included the removal of affected soil and the installation of a series of monitoring wells to assess groundwater impacts, including a well inclined at 45 degrees to evaluate conditions below a structure. Based upon the low levels of contamination present in groundwater and the nature of the local geology, monitored natural attenuation (MNA) was recommended, and after four years it was determined that all chemicals of concern were below their respective cleanup targets. The site, now a fitness center, was issued a closure letter from TCEQ in September 2009, and no groundwater response actions were required. For more information, contact Frank W. Clark, P.E. (972-509-9611).
W&M Assists Client with LPST Closure in Mid-Cities
W&M assisted a North Carolina-based client with the closure of a former gasoline station located in the mid-cities area. The site had been an operating filling station in the 1980’s, but had since been re-developed into a retail store. Site investigation detected low levels of gasoline constituents in groundwater. W&M completed a Drinking Water Survey Report and prepared a Release Determination Report (RDR) as required by the Petroleum Storage Tanks rules. After review of the site data and evaluation of local receptors, W&M drafted an Expedited Site Closure Request to TCEQ demonstrating that the site risks were acceptable given its current use. TCEQ agreed with the technical submittal and granted a No Further Action (NFA) letter in August 2009. For more information, contact Frank W. Clark, P.E. (972-509-9611).
Closure for Dry Cleaner Remediation Program Site
W&M working with Ecology & Environment has received a No Further Action letter for a dry cleaner site located in San Antonio. The site was closed through the TCEQ’s Dry Cleaner Remediation Program (DCRP). According to the TCEQ’s DCRP Site Prioritization List, as of July 15, 2009 there were 156 active sites and 16 sites that had been closed (not counting our site in San Antonio). For more information, contact Michael Whitehead (972-509-9608). For more information on the DCRP, click here.
W&M Client Receives Final Closure for South Dallas Brownfields Property
A non-profit community development corporation (CDC) received Final Closure from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) for a retail property located in south Dallas. The property had been contaminated from a historic dry cleaning business that formerly occupied one of the tenant suites in the building. In a model case of public/private cooperation, the site received the benefit of environmental assessment funds from the City of Dallas Brownfields Program and TCEQ’s Brownfields Site Assessment (BSA) program. The dry cleaning solvent perchloroethylene (PCE) and its daughter products were identified in soil and groundwater, and had migrated beyond the property boundary, but no groundwater wells were located in the area. W&M worked with the CDC, City of Dallas Economic Development Office and Housing Department to seek approval of an MSD to restrict the use of groundwater beneath the property. With the approval of the MSD, groundwater cleanup targets were adjusted to reflect the fact that it is not used for potable purposes. The site received final closure from TCEQ in early July 2009. For more information, contact Frank W. Clark, P.E. (972-509-9611).
TCEQ Certifies Municipal Setting Designation (MSD) for First MSD in Grand Prairie
A private client of W&M received formal approval and certification from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) for a Municipal Setting Designation (MSD) to restrict groundwater use at its property located in Grand Prairie. The property had contained an historic printing operation that experienced a release of solvents from an in-ground sump that eventually contaminated local groundwater. The groundwater plume had been defined, and although no impacts to wells were identified, the concentrations exceeded default cleanup criteria established by TCEQ for Class 1 groundwater. The site was entered into the Texas Voluntary Cleanup Program (VCP) in 1997, and expensive attempts at groundwater cleanup by previous consultants proved unsuccessful. Since all other exposure pathways had been addressed, a restriction on groundwater use was sought using the MSD process. W&M coordinated with the City of Grand Prairie environmental staff, assisted with the notification of over 200 property and well owners, and attended a public meeting and City Council hearing to describe the MSD process and demonstrate that the MSD is protective of environmental receptors. Grand Prairie approved the MSD in February 2009 (its first); TCEQ concurred and issued an MSD Certificate on August 21, 2009. For more information, contact Frank W. Clark, P.E. (972-509-9611) or Michael Whitehead (972-509-9608).
W&M Obtains VCP Closure for Dallas Warehouse
W&M working for a property and investment fund management firm received a Final Certificate of Completion (COC) from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) Voluntary Cleanup Program (VCP). The Final COC releases the property owner and future property owners from environmental liability from the state and EPA associated with all contaminants of concern and all media. The site was impacted with chlorinated solvents and previous efforts to remediate and close the site had been unsuccessful. W&M’s solution was to address the chlorinated solvents with a Municipal Setting Designation (MSD) from the City of Dallas followed by a MSD from the TCEQ. The MSD was used to eliminate the groundwater ingestion pathway from consideration as it related to risk assessment of the site. Since the MSD adjusted clean up levels were much higher than the default clean up levels or Protective Concentration Levels (PCLs), the site was closed through the VCP without any physical remediation. W&M completed this VCP project within the requested timeframe and at significant cost savings using the MSD over traditional groundwater treatment options. As a result, the property owner has dropped their yearly environmental insurance and plans to market the property as a clean parcel of land free from environmental encumbrances. For more information on this project, contact Andy Adams (713-316-0025).
W&M Obtains Municipal Setting Designation for Dallas Warehouse Building
W&M took another step closer to regulatory closure of a warehouse building in Dallas located off of I-35. The property owner engaged W&M to cleanup and close the site through the TCEQ's Voluntary Cleanup Program (VCP). The groundwater at the property is impacted with chlorinated solvents from an unknown source. Using W&M’s expertise in risked-based corrective action strategies, a Municipal Setting Designation (MSD) was implemented to eliminate the groundwater ingestion pathway since no one is drinking the groundwater in this area of Dallas. The MSD option can potentially avoid costly cleanup and/or long term groundwater monitoring at qualified properties. At this time, the site has obtained an MSD from both the City of Dallas and TCEQ. With the MSD in place, it is anticipated that the VCP Final Certificate of Completion will be issued since all Chemicals of Concern (COCs) are below applicable Protective Concentration Levels (PCLs) or cleanup levels. The MSD process employed by W&M resulted in no physical remediation at the site. W&M delivered the MSD within the forecasted timeframe and within the proposed project budgets. For more information, contact Michael Whitehead (972-509-9608).
LPST Closure in Dallas
W&M assisted a real estate client with the rapid closure of a Leaking Petroleum Storage Tank (LPST) site located in Dallas. W&M identified five underground storage tanks (USTs) on the site and had them removed in April 2009. Confirmation sampling identified relatively low concentrations of petroleum related compounds (petroleum hydrocarbons and BTEX) in the soil and groundwater. W&M filed a Release Determination Report (RDR) and completed a survey of local environmental receptors. An Assessment Report Form (ARF) was submitted to the TCEQ documenting that the residual concentrations of Chemicals of Concern (COCs) in soil and water did not represent an unacceptable risk to human or ecological receptors. As a result, the site received a closure letter from the TCEQ in July 2009, only three months from the time the impact was originally detected. For more information, contact Michael Whitehead (972-509-9608).
W&M understands that in some cases, like the examples above, it takes more effort to find the right solution to address environmental concerns. In the end, you need a client advocate and an experienced professional that works hard to find cost effective solutions to your real estate issues. For more information, contact Michael Whitehead (972-509-9608).