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EIS-Ch3 2

EIS-Ch3 2

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Published by Sarah McKenzie

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Published by: Sarah McKenzie on Aug 03, 2013
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3-1July 2013
3. Affected Environment, EnvironmentalConsequences, and ProposedMitigation Measures
3.1 Soil Conditions and Contamination
The EIS includes analysis of potential environmental hazards from past land use conditions and fromdemolition and construction associated with the Proposed Project.
3.1.1 Soil Conditions
Soils in the Proposed Project area average about 40 feet thick, overlying limestone bedrock of thePlatteville Formation (
Geologic Atlas of Hennepin County 
, Minnesota Geological Survey, 1989). TheProposed Project area contains a single soil type, identified as U4A - Urban Land Udipsamments(cut and fill land) Complex, with 0 to 2 percent slopes.
The city of Minneapolis was historicallyexcluded from the Soil Survey because of urban development and extensive soil reworking. According to the Geologic Atlas of Hennepin County, the surficial soils in the Proposed Project areaare Middle Terrace glacial-meltwater stream sediments of sand, gravelly sand, and loamy sand,which are overlain in places by thin deposits of silt, loam, or organic sediment. The surficial depositsare frequently covered by thick fill or reworked local materials where heavily developed.
3.1.2 Potential Environmental Hazards from Past Uses Background
 A governmental database records search has been completed for the Proposed Project area, whichsupplements Phase I Environmental Site Assessments (ESAs) completed for specific propertieswithin the Proposed Project area. The studies and searches have been used to determine thepotential extent of the environmental hazards from past site uses that could be encountered by theProposed Project. The EIS summarizes the findings of the studies, searches, and surveys as theinformation relates to potential contamination found within the Proposed Project area.
Scope of Environmental Review
Information on soil and contamination conditions has been gathered from the following property-specific documentation available at this time:
Phase I Environmental Site Assessments (ESAs)
Phase II ESAs or comparable investigations
The EDR Radius Map Report with Geocheck 
[governmental database records search],Environmental Data Resources, Inc. (EDR); March 11, 2013
What’s in my Neighborhood?
[an on-line governmental database], Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA); accessed March 8, 2013
Natural Resources Conservation Service Web Soil Survey,http://websoilsurvey.nrcs.usda.gov/app/;accessed  August 27, 2012
3-2July 2013Property-Specific Environmental Reviews within the Proposed Project area have been performed by American Engineering Testing, Inc. (AET) for the MSFA. Those Reviews and a summary TechnicalMemorandum are included in
Appendix B
of the EIS. The EDR report of governmental databaserecords search is also included in
Appendix B
. Affected Environment
Identified Environmental Hazards
Environmental review has identified contaminant impacts to soil, groundwater, and soil gas media onvarious properties. Contaminants include metals, petroleum, volatile organic compounds (VOCs),and other organic compounds such as polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) andpolychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs).These findings are consistent with historical operations within the Proposed Project area, includingthe following: railroad; foundry and ironworks; machining, welding, and sheet metal;blacksmith/tinsmith; electroplating; engraving; plumbing and heating; furniture factory; carpentry andwagonwright; laundry; paint, print, and binding; paper and box factory; bottling and liquor storage;morgue and hospital; warehouse; lumber yard; parking; and auto repair and gas station.
Affected Properties
Environmental review indicates that the identified contaminant impacts result in an affectedenvironment at the following properties within the Proposed Project area (see
Figure 3.1-1
Block 71 – 300 9
Avenue South: VOCs, PAHs, and metals including barium, copper, andarsenic
Block 73 – 424 Chicago Avenue South and 701 4
Street South (contaminant impacts in LightRail Transit right-of-way adjacent to Block 73): petroleum
Block 94 – 530 Chicago Avenue South: petroleum and PAHs
Block 106 – 309 9
Avenue South: VOCs, PAHs, and metals including lead, copper, andarsenic
Metrodome – 900 5
Street South: organic vapors (i.e., VOCs) and PCBs
Degree of Certainty
MPCA regulatory files for the identified properties have been requested for review, but the files havenot yet become available for review. Given the information accessed, the degree and distribution of contaminated soil conditions is not yet well defined throughout the Proposed Project area. Whilepotential soil contamination is not considered to be everywhere within the Proposed Project area, itwould be difficult to rule out soil contamination at any given location without further assessment. Environmental Consequences
Direct Consequences
The environmental consequences of contamination in soil, groundwater, and soil gas media beginwith potential risks to site workers, site users, or off-site receptors. The type, magnitude, extent, andother characteristics of contamination will require additional assessment to better define the potentialrisks to human health and the environment. Once more fully defined, the risks will require proper planning and mitigation during the site redevelopment process.
Indirect Consequences
The coarse-grained natural soil deposits are considered susceptible to groundwater contaminationand vapor migration if releases occur. However, the prevalence of paved surfaces and thick fill in
3-3July 2013places serves to insulate the underlying natural soils and groundwater from contaminant migration.The Proposed Project design and construction process is expected to include additional assessmentand removal of contaminant impacts in shallow soils. The Proposed Project is not expected to alter the general soil conditions or permanently enhance the potential for contaminant migration.However, dewatering during construction has a potential to affect groundwater hydraulic conditionsand the distribution of any associated contamination. Mitigation
Regulatory Considerations
In most cases, mitigation measures for environmental contamination in the State of Minnesota areundertaken in coordination with the MPCA. The MPCA offers the following fee-for-service voluntaryprograms which can provide liability assurances to owners, prospective purchasers, or developers:
Petroleum Brownfield Program (PBP) for petroleum contamination
Voluntary Investigation and Cleanup (VIC) program for non-petroleum impactsThe MPCA voluntary programs operate in coordination with state regulatory programs such asSuperfund and the Petroleum Remediation Program (PRP) to offer liability assurances consistentwith voluntary programs and regulatory statutes, rules, and policies. The voluntary programs alsooffer users prescribed guidelines and standardized approaches for investigation, response actionplanning, remediation, and monitoring of mitigation measures.
Materials Management
During site preparation for the Proposed Project, the MSFA may encounter the presence of contamination or solid waste that must be properly managed to minimize risks. The followingmaterials management categories, each requiring unique permitting and documentation measures,are anticipated for materials expected to be encountered within the Proposed Project area:
Landfill disposal/management of hazardous or solid waste
Landfill disposal or potential reuse of regulated fill soil following federal, state and localgovernment notification procedures
Potential on-site or off-site reuse or approved disposal of unregulated fill soil depending on soilcharacteristics and conditions at the prospective receiving site
Potential on-site or off-site reuse or disposal of uncontaminated soil depending on soil suitabilityfor planned construction uses
Soil and bedrock, either contaminated or uncontaminated, which may remain
in situ
Discharge or sanitary disposal of potentially contaminated waters which may require advancedplanning, permitting, pre-treatment, or other management measures
Risk Management
The presence of soil gas contamination in the ground may result in migration and encroachmentrisks to buildings, whether existing or yet to be constructed.
Given the information developed in this EIS, further investigation of potential vapor intrusion risksappears warranted.
If investigation activities indicate a potential for vapor intrusion to buildings at concentrationsexceeding action levels, then vapor mitigation measures would be necessary. Such mitigationmay include active or passive vent and barrier systems, as necessary.

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