Superfund Information Systems: Site Profile

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The former Federal Creosote Superfund Site occupied approximately 50 acres of a highly developed residential/commercial area in the Borough of Manville, Somerset County, New Jersey. The Site was operated as a coal tar wood treatment facility from 1911 to 1956, which contaminted soil and groundwater at the Site. After operations ceased and the wood treatment facility was dismantled, the property was purchased by a developer. In the 1960s 137 single family homes were built on 35 acres of the Site. This residential area became known as the Claremont Development. The remaining 15 acres of the site was developed into the Rustic Mall which consisted of commercial and retail establishments. The cleanup of contaminated Site soil has been completed, and the Site has been deleted from the National Priorities List. Long-term groundwater monitoring at the Site is ongoing.

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What Has Been Done to Clean Up the Site?

Residential Soil: In July 1998, EPA started a short-term cleanup, called a removal action, to protect the health of area residents. At 11 properties, EPA temporarily covered areas containing high surface soil levels of carcinogenic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in exposed surface soils. Long-term cleanup actions initially focused on properties where the buried lagoons and canals were located. EPA selected an early action remedy for these areas (known as Phase 1) in September 1999. This Phase 1 action called for cleanup of 29 residential properties and involved the permanent relocation of 19 families to facilitate the removal and off-site thermal treatment of source material. In September 2000, EPA selected a remedy for Phase 2. It called for the remediation of soils on all other residential properties containing creosote above risk-based cleanup goals. Under the selected Phase 2 remedy, contaminated soils were excavated from 64 additional properties, treated and disposed of off-site. In total, EPA has cleaned up 93 residential properties in need of remediation. The remediation of these properties required permanent and temporary relocation of residents, excavation to depths ranging from 1 to 35 feet below ground surface, and has resulted in the removal of over 275,000 tons of soil from the residential development.

Commercial Area and Groundwater: EPA selected the remedy for Phase 3 in 2002. As with the previous residential soil remedies for the Site, the Phase 3 remedy called for excavation and off-site thermal treatment and disposal of contaminated soils. For groundwater, the remedy called for a long-term sampling and analysis program to monitor concentrations of creosote components in Site groundwater. The program will allow EPA to assess the migration and attenuation of the creosote in the groundwater over time. Institutional controls are in place and restrict the installation of wells and the use of groundwater.

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What Is the Current Site Status?

The soil at the Site has been cleaned up in three phases. In Phase 1, source material from subsurface disposal canals and lagoons was removed from residential properties and borough right-of-ways. In Phase 2, residual levels of contaminants in soil above the cleanup goals were removed from residential properties. In Phase 3, source material and residually contaminated soils were removed from the Rustic Mall property. An institutional control, which restricts the use of groundwater, has been established for the contaminated groundwater beneath the site.

Approximately 275,000 tons and 177,000 tons of contaminated soil were removed from residential properties and commercial properties, respectively. The contaminated soil was shipped off site for treatment and disposal. Long-term groundwater monitoring is ongoing.

The Federal Creosote Site was deleted from the National Priorities List in June 2014.

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