Condemned Property Assessment

The Village of Lindenhurst was interested in condemning a parcel of property as part of a future redevelopment project for a court house.

The Village of Lindenhurst was interested in condemning a parcel of property as part of a future redevelopment project for a court house. The property, last used by an exterminator, was already being inspected by NYSDEC in response to previous complaints. The Village retained PWGC to assess the property for environmental issues prior to finalizing the condemnation proceedings.


PWGC began the assessment of the property with a Phase I investigation. Based upon the results of the investigation, PWGC conducted an offsite groundwater investigation followed by an onsite investigation in conjunction with the Suffolk County Department of Health Services (SCDHS). Since PWGC was not given access to the property by the existing owner, the interior of the building was not inspected. Based upon the findings of the Phase I, several potential cesspools and storm drains were identified on site. These structures are identified as Underground Injection Control (UIC) structures and had the potential to act as a conduit for impact to reach the subsurface. PWGC also identified a potential Underground Storage Tank (UST) in the front of the building. Due to the fact that PWGC still didn’t have access to the property and could not directly sample the structures, PWGC collected groundwater samples at the property line to assess the groundwater quality coming onto and leaving the site. Results of this investigation revealed elevated levels of the pesticide Chlordane as well as elevated levels of Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs), that PWGC believed were from an offsite up gradient source. Due to the presence of elevated levels of Chlordane in the groundwater, the Village contacted the SCDHS and provided them with a summary of the results in order to obtain their help to move forward with the environmental assessment of the site.

Based upon PWGC’s findings, the SCHDS concurred with PWGC that onsite investigation of the property would be warranted. PWGC had several meetings with the SCDHS in order to discuss access issues, devise a comprehensive scope of work, determine sampling locations and sampling parameters, and determine how the cost would be shared between the SCDHS and the Village. The SCDHS obtained an investigation warrant and the SCDHS was granted access to the property under court order. Since PWGC was not given access to the site, PWGC re-sampled the offsite wells concurrently with the SCDHS onsite investigation. During the course of the investigation PWGC and the SCDHS worked together to evaluate results and modify the scope of work based upon the conditions in the field. Analyses of the samples were spilt between PWGC and the SCDHS. Upon receipt of both PWGC and the SCHDS laboratory results, PWGC prepared an investigation report for the SCDHS and the Village, which summarized the findings of the investigation. The report also included remedial recommendations for the site. The Village of Lindenhurst was able to use PWGC’s report in order to make an informed decision whether to proceed with the site’s condemnation.

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