Jamaica, Ridgewood sites assessed for environmental contaminants

Jamaica, Ridgewood sites assessed for environmental contaminants
The Dept. of Environmental Conservation is assessing sites in Jamaica and Ridgewood for contaminants and is inviting the public to comment on their proposed programs for cleaning up vacant warehouses.
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By Naeisha Rose

Residents in Jamaica and Ridgewood were invited to comment on Brownfield Cleanup Programs in their area, the state Department of Environmental Conservation says.

The Jamaica site is located at 147-07 94th Ave. and the Ridgewood site is at 18-46 Decatur St., and both spots are under review to be cleaned up for contamination, according to the DEC.

The DEC classifies a brownfield site as any property where a contaminant is present at levels exceeding the health-based or environmental standards set by the state organization.

The Jamaica site is 35,000 square-feet and before it became vacant it was used as a produce warehouse, meat storage facility and refrigeration sales, according to www.dec.ny.gov. It has three interconnected buildings, a concrete-paved loading dock, and asphalt-paved parking areas.

The former warehouse is north and south of residential areas, and north of the Long Island Railroad, according to the site description.

The DEC is conducting an environmental and health assessment of the facility and residents who want to be informed about any contaminants or comment on any foreseeable projects to clean up the former warehouse can go to the Central Library at 89-11 Merrick Blvd. or to Community Board 12 at 90-28 161 St. in Jamaica.

The DEC has finished a health and environmental assessment of the site at Ridgewood and discovered two contaminants, trichloroethene and tetrachloroethene, chemicals us in dry-cleaning.

The Ridgewood site is a warehouse for building materials and was formerly a tuxedo supply company that performed on-site dry-cleaning from 1991 to 2015.

The warehouse is located next to a multi-family walkup building at 18-48 Decatur St. to the north, a two-family building at 18-40 Decatur St. to the south, is east of the LIRR and west on OF? another two-family building on 18-39 Decatur St., according to the DEC.

The former tuxedo shop is also approximately 350 feet south of Cambridge Elementary School, which serves pre-school to fifth-grade students at 59-09 Felix Ave.

The two-story warehouse facility is 0.11 acres in size and an environmental assessment of the soil and groundwater found that the site had volatile organic compounds, semi-volatile organic compounds, PCBs and pesticides.

The tetrachloroethene and trichloroethene moderately exceed normal levels, according to the environmental assessment, which is enough for on-site mitigation of the structure, according to the DEC.

The DEC found the contaminants near the old dry cleaning equipment room of the site, and the health assessment determined that the soil’s vapor may move into surrounding buildings and could affect indoor air quality for people nearby.

Ridgewood residents can get information or leave comments for the proposed brownfield cleanup of the area to members of Community Board 5 who are located at 61-23 Myrtle Ave. or at Queens Library at Ridgewood located at 20-12 Madison S.

Reach reporter Naeisha Rose by e-mail at nrose@cnglocal.com or by phone at (718) 260–4573.

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