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Record of Decision System (RODS)



Address:  BLDG #28 
City & State:  FORT BENJAMIN HARRISON  IN  46216
County:  MARION
EPA ID:  IN4210090003
EPA Region:  05
NPL Status:  Not on the NPL
Non-NPL Status:  Other Cleanup Activity: Federal Facility-Lead Cleanup
ROD Type:  Record of Decision
ROD ID:  EPA/541/R-99/143
ROD Date:  08/26/1999
Operable Unit(s):  00
Media:  Soil
Contaminant:  Dioxins/Dibenzofurans, Inorganics, Metals, PAH, Pesticides
Abstract:  The former Fort Benjamin Harrison (FBH) was a United States (US) Army Installation located in the City of Lawrence, Marion County, Indiana. The former installation, consisting of 2501 acres, was approximately 12 miles northeast of downtown Indianapolis. Residential areas and farmland bound FBH, with the exception of light industrial areas to the southeast.

FBH was established as an infantry regiment post. Over the years it served as a training camp, induction and reception center, and was home to several Army schools, disciplinary barracks, a hospital, and a prisoner-of-war camp. In 1950 FBH became the Army Finance Center. In 1980 FBH was reorganized as the US Army Soldier Support Center (USASSC) responsible for personnel support, including finance, religion, legal aid, music, public affairs, morale, welfare, and recreation. USASSC housed five major tenants, including the Defense Finance and Accounting Service - Indianapolis Center, the Enlisted Records and Evaluation Center, Hawley Army Community Hospital, Readiness Group Harrison, and the 123rd Army Reserve Command.

In 1991 FBH was placed on the Department of Defense Base Closure List. As a result of the Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) program for FBH, environmental studies were conducted to address releases or suspected releases of hazardous substances.

The EI at FBH was conducted in two phases. Phase I, was completed in 1994, investigated the environmental media - soil, surface water, and groundwater - at sites identified in the enhanced preliminary assessment. The Phase I concluded that seven EI sites required no further action. This decision is documented in a previous proposed plan. The Phase II, conducted in the fall and winter of 1996/1997, concluded that three sites required further evaluation. The three sites are the Pesticide Mixing and Storage Areas, Building 605 (EI Site SM20); the Golf Course Pesticide Mixing Areas, Building 674, (EI Site SM21); and the Former Sewage Treatment Plant (EI Site SM26). These three sites are the subject of the August 1999 ROD.

Pesticides, herbicides, insecticides, and rodenticides were stored and mixed in and around Building 605. This building is located just southeast of Building 604, which housed the former entomology office and a small plumbing shop. Pesticides were mixed in an outside fenced area on the northwest side of Building 605. The mixing area is covered and has a bermed concrete floor with a catch basin for floor spills. Spills were sent to the Defense Reutilization Marketing Office (DRMO) for storage and disposal. Empty pesticide containers and mixing vessels were triple-rinsed and disposed as sanitary waste. The rinse water was used as either a pesticide dilutant or disposed through DRMO. Building 605 is located above a steep embankment and near a concrete-lined drainage ditch that is about 100 feet northeast of the building. This drainage ditch leads to Hawthorne Pond, which is approximately a quarter-mile downstream.

Building 674 was a small concrete-block structure located along the Shafter Road on the south side of the FBH golf course. The single-story building was used as an office for FBH golf course maintenance personnel, and for storing maintenance equipment. Maintenance personnel formerly used a small wooden shed adjacent to Building 674 as a pesticide mixing and storage facility. Pesticides were stored in the shed and mixed on a concrete pad located between the shed and Building 674. The shed did not have a concrete floor and had no spill containment. Pesticides also were reportedly mixed in the gravel lot on the north side of Building 674. In 1988, Building 674 was demolished and removed from the site. A fence was installed along the golf cartpath that passes near the location where the building stood. The topography at the site slopes to the south toward Shafter Road. Along the north side of Shafter Road is an open turf-covered ditch that drains surface waterrunoff during periods of heavy rain and diverts it westward along the road.

EI Site 1 is the self-help Auto Craft Shop. This structure, formerly building 705, was used by Army personnel and their dependents to work on personal vehicles. Vehicle maintenance operations conducted at the shop included: oil changing, tire and battery storage, replacement, and service; brake repair; electrical systems repair; parts cleaning and degreasing; and engine tuneups.

Until 1982, waste oil was contained in 55-gallon drums stored inside Building 705 at a drum accumulation area. The building has a concrete floor with floor drains that lead to an oil/water separator (OWS). Based on information provided by FBH personnel, the sanitary sewer was the ultimate discharge point for the floor drain and OWS. In 1982, a 550-gallon steel underground storage tank (UST) was installed near the northeast corner of the building to store the waste oil. The UST was installed near the northeast corner of the building to store the waste oil. The UST was removed in 1992 before Phase I field activities began. Petroleum, oils, and lubricants (POLs) subsequently were stored in a plastic secondary containment basin located outside the northeast corner of the building.

EI site 3 is the location of the former Post Gas Station (Building 619). According to historical records, Buildings 619 once served as the Post Exchange Gasoline Station. This building is located along the service road behind Building 670 on the east side of Lawton Loop. Five USTs were installed at this site in 1937, and were removed in 1992. Gasoline reportedly was contained in two 10,000 gallon tanks and fuel oil was contained in two 2,000 gallon tanks and one 1,000-gallon tank. No records exist indicating the occurrence of spills, leaks, or releases of petroleum products from this site. In addition, no records exist detailing the historic operations of this facility.

EI site 4 is the Directorate of Installation Support Engineering/Maintenance (Building 26). This building is located at the intersection of Post Road and Otis Avenue. The following maintenance facilities were based in this building: carpentry shop, electrical shop, preventative maintenance shop, and heating and air conditioning shop.

Most maintenance activities were conducted at specific job sites where services were requested; however, some minor supporting maintenance functions were performed in Building 26. Sawing, sanding, painting, varnishing, and other woodworking activities were performed in the carpentry shop. In the past, areas of the shop were used to store paint thinner, asbestos, and asphalt coating. Electrical maintenance activities were primarily conducted at the job site, although past activities in the shop included transferring polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) to secure storage locations. According to DIS personnel, electrical transformers previously were stored in the electrical shop in the northwest corner of the building. Work performed by the preventative maintenance shop included painting and minor repairs on plumbing fixtures.

Numerous chemicals were stored in the heating and air conditioning shop, including acids, bases, used petroleum naptha, phosphates, biocides in solution, and other similar materials for use in maintenance operations. At one time, the DIS also operated a metal and paint shop in Building 26. Small amounts of acids, bases, paint strippers and thinners, and alcohols were stored in the shop.

EI site 5 is the electrical shop (Building 4). Maintenance operations associated with the Electrical Shop generally were conducted at the job site; however, some supporting repair work was performed in the shop, and it was use din the past to store and repair transformers containing PCB oils. A diesel-powered electrical generating station was located in an open lot south of Building 4. The generators are still present. Three 10,000 gallon USTs containing fuel topower the generators were located along the west side of the building. The tanks were installed in 1972 and removed in 1992.

EI site 6 was the former Coal Storage Yard (Building 2), the heating plan. From 1952 through 1988, coal-fired boilers were used in the heating plant operations. Use of coal was discontinued in 1989 on conversion of the heating plant to gas. For a number of years, several hundred tons of coal were stored in an open pile on an approximately 1-acre concrete pad. During wet weather, the coal pile at the yard reportedly produced a sludge that flowed over the concrete pad toward the west and into a concrete-lined drain that diverted it into a nearby settling/evaporation basin.

EI site SM 18 is the pesticides mixing and storage area (Building 27). Building 27 was a former boiler room/maintenance shed located on Otis Avenue just east of Building 26. The building as a low shed, half of which was underground. The interior was divided into two main rooms and had a concrete floor. Several steam lines ran through the building. Pesticides and herbicides were stored in it during the 1970s. Following the period of pesticide storage, the building was flooded by broken steam lines. Water was pumped from the basement onto the lawn near the southeast corner of the building. In the summer of 1998, Building 27 was demolished and disposed offsite along with the surface soil at this site.

EI site SM19 is the pesticide mixing/storing area (building 514). EI Site SM19 is located at the southeastern edge of the Fort golf course near Lee Road. Building 514 was used until the mid-to late 1980s for the temporary storage of excess pesticides and herbicides. Pesticide application equipment also was stored in the building.

EI sites SM25b and SM25c are located along the tenth hole of the former FBH golf course, approximately in the geographic center of the former installation. The two sites are suspected locations of per-World War I dumps. Archaeological reports indicate that EI site SM25b was in use from 1889 to 1913, and EI Site 25c was in use from 1890 to 1920.

The state of Indiana purchased the golf course from the Army in June 1995. EI sites SM25b and SM25c were withheld from the transaction until the field sampling for the EI was complete. An expedited investigation and assessment of the sites was conducted in 195 and 1996 to facilitate property transfer and the reconstruction work performed on the golf course before public use.

EI site SM25f is the historic military site (WWII-era Dump). The site is located just south of Gates Lord Hall, under what is now an asphalt-paved parking lot. The site was identified during a 1983 archeological investigation as a World War II-era dump that was used in 1947. A subsequent archaeological survey performed in 1992 revealed that the former dump site probably has been destroyed and/or removed by the Army, since the area had been paved and tow new barracks constructed in the immediate vicinity.

EI site SM25h is the historic military site (Building 518). This site lies north and west of Building 518, in Fort Harrison State Park. It was identified as a prehistoric Native American campsite and a military dump in use from 1930 to 1950. Archaeological investigations at the site have uncovered various artifacts and construction debris.

EI site SMh lies north and west of Building 518, in Fort Harrison State Park. It was identified as a prehistoric Native American campsite and a military dump in use from 1930 to 1950. Archaeological investigations at the site have uncovered various artifacts and construction debris.

EI site SM25I is a located in a grassy field west of Building 654 behind Lawton Loop West. An archeological report from 1984 stated that a scatter of debris and a concrete pad possibly related to a water treatment facility were located at this site. The potential for contamination at the site was linked tot he possible remnants of thewater treatment facility and the unknown source of the scattered debris.

EI site SM25j is located in a grassy field behind Lawton Loop, just west of Building 645 and 646 on Lawton Loop West. An archeological report from 1984 stated that the light scatter of historic debris was present behind the row of residences, and as exposed mostly in garden plots. The debris was dated to WWI (1908+) and included glass, plastic, and brass cartridge. During a subsequent survey in 1992, no surface indications of the site were found. The potential for contamination at the site was linked to the unknown source and extent of the scattered debris.

EI site SM26 is the location of a former sewage treatment plant (STP). The former STP is located in the wooded area south of Shafter Road, and west of Building 674, just upstream of the junction of Schoen Creek with an unnamed tributary. The site lies on a hillside and the adjacent lowland. Remnants of the STP still visible at the site include concrete walls that formed the cells of the contract beds and filter beds, as well as earthen berms that surround the former sludge-drying beds. These former beds are situated in the lowland adjacent to the unnamed tributary of Schoen Creek. In addition to these structures, the aerial photographs show a septic tank located east of the former contact beds, but this structure is not visible at the site and is probably buried. Past operational records for this treatment facility have not been found. Until closure of FBH, the area was used for the disposal of lawn debris (e.g., leaves, grass clippings), and half of the contact bed cells are filled with debris.

EI site SM27 is the location of a former sewage treatment plan identified on aerial photographs and FBH historical site maps from 1913 to 1938. The former STP was located in the wooded area just north of Building 509. Currently, a running track and athletic field cover a portion of the site. Fort Branch Creek lies just to the east of the site. Remnants of the former STP structures are not apparent, but heavy scatter of concrete rubble and surface debris were found in the area that could be associated with the facility. Operational records for this facility have not been found.

EI Site 30 is the Beaumont Triangle and is located southeast of the intersection of Beaumont Road and Brooks Boulevard. The property is currently owned by the 123rd Army Reserve Command. The area north of the site is used for recreation and contains several ball fields. The site is an open field. Review of Army photographs indicated that this area was used in the past for the open storage of coal.

EI Site 31 is the former salvage yard. It is located long the west side of Lee Road and northeast of Building 518, the former sanitary waste incinerator. The general area has been displayed on historical maps as a wood yard, salvage yard, and scrap yard. No specific information as available regarding the use of the site or the type of materials that may have been used or stored there. During site walkovers and field investigation activities, piles of concrete blocks, brush, and miscellaneous items were found scattered around the site. Much of the site currently is covered by dense woods that appear to be 20 to 30 years old.

EI site 32 is the Green Avenue POL site. This site is a combination of three areas formerly associated with the storage and handling of petroleum products: the Intersection Spill Site, the former Gas Station/Oil House (Building 6), and the area north of the former Gas Station/Oil House. All three sites are located east of the intersection of Post Road (formerly Greene Avenue) and 56th Street. The three areas were combined into one investigation site because of their proximity and the similarity of potential contaminants.

A Record of Decision document addressing OU 0 was signed in March 1999.
Remedy:  The selected remedies address the principal sources of risk at the three sites by removing all soil with contaminants that exceed the target risk levels. Excavated soils will be disposed offsite, so that the sites will not require any long-term management.

The selected remedy for environmental investigation (EI) site SM20 (Pesticide Mixing and Storage Areas, Building 605) is excavation and offsite disposal of approximately 335 cubic yards of contaminated soil. The excavated soil must be characterized and disposed at an appropriately-licensed special-waste disposal facility. This alternative requires site preparation (including installation of fences, signs, and erosion-control mechanisms, and the mobilization of field teams), excavation, verification sampling, transportation of soils to a disposal facility, and site restoration. The site must also be restored with the addition of clean fill material, topsoil, and/or re-seeding.

The selected remedy for EI site SM21 (Golf Course Pesticide Mixing Areas, Building 674) is excavation and offsite disposal of approximately 120 cubic yards of contaminated soil. Excavation and disposal of the contaminated soil at EI site SM21 will proceed in the same way as described for EI site SM20.

The selected remedy for EI site SM26 (Former Sewage Treatment Plant, west of Building 674) is excavation and offsite disposal of contaminated soils. Under this remedy, six inches of soil within the bermed sludge-drying beds would be excavated and removed from the site, approximately 700 cubic yards of soil. A hydraulic excavator or backhoe will be used within the sludge-drying beds to remove the contaminated soils. In order to facilitate use of powered equipment in the sludge-drying beds, all trees less than six inches in diameter will be removed, if necessary. Trees greater than six inches will be left in place, if possible.

Estimated Capital Cost: not provided
Estimated Annual O&M Costs: not provided
Estimated Present Worth Costs: not provided
Total Costs: $229,000
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