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Posted on: August 16, 2022

KDHE to Conduct Public Meeting September 8 at Atwater Neighborhood Resource Center in Wichita

For Immediate Release Graphic


The Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) will conduct a public meeting September 8 at 6:30 p.m. at the Atwater Neighborhood Resource Center, 2755 E. 19th St N., Wichita, Kansas, regarding a plan to address contamination at the 29th and Grove Site. The draft Corrective Action Decision details the proposed remediation work and is now available for the public to review at the Angelou Northeast Branch Library at 3501 E. 21st N., Wichita and at KDHE offices and website. Spanish interpretation services will be available during the public meeting. If accommodations for the public meeting are needed for persons with disabilities, please notify Mary Daily at 1000 SW Jackson St, Suite 410, Topeka Kansas 66612-1367 or by calling 785-296-8896 by September 2, 2022.

Contamination from the 29th and Grove Site was first discovered during investigations related to redevelopment of the 21st Street Corridor. The source of contamination was traced back to a portion of the Union Pacific Railroad rail yard located south of K-96 highway between highway I-135 and Grove Street. The primary contaminant of concern is trichloroethene (TCE) which is commonly used for metal degreasing. TCE is a type of volatile organic compound (VOC). KDHE signed agreements with Union Pacific Railroad to investigate the extent of VOC contamination in soil and groundwater. Investigations indicated the contamination in the groundwater has migrated from the rail yard to the south and extends to the area of Murdock Avenue.

“After investigation of the contamination,” said Mary Daily, Project Manager and Professional Geologist, KDHE “we have identified the following actions as the best way to protect the public health and the environment.”

  • At the source area, enhance the natural process of bioremediation of the contaminants by adding nutrients and other amendments to the soil and groundwater so that bacteria can degrade the contamination.
  • At the source area, remove remaining shallow contaminated soil present under a concrete pad for a storage area.
  • Pump contaminated groundwater to the surface and treat the water to remove contaminants. The water would be treated by air stripping technology and/or granular activated carbon technology. After contaminants are removed from the water, the treated water would be reinjected back into the subsurface and/or discharged to a nearby stream by permit.
  • Establish an environmental use control to restrict the use of the rail yard where the release of TCE occurred to prevent exposure to contaminated soil and groundwater.
  • Evaluate the performance of the remedy by monitoring groundwater and surface water.
  • Prevent installation of new domestic-use wells in areas with groundwater contamination.
  • Conduct periodic reviews of receptors and potential exposure pathways to ensure that the remedy remains protective of human health.

KDHE may modify the preferred remedial alternative identified in the draft Corrective Action Decision based on current information or public comments. Key documents concerning the site, including the draft Corrective Action Decision, will be available for review and copying during the public comment period from August 18 to September 16, 2022 at the following locations:

Kansas Department of Health and Environment
Bureau of Environmental Remediation
1000 SW Jackson, Suite 410
Topeka, Kansas, 66612-1367
CONTACT: Mary Daily
Phone: (785) 296-8896

Angelou Northeast Branch Library
3501 E. 21st N.
Wichita, Kansas 67214
Phone: (316) 688-9580 

The public may provide comments on the draft Corrective Action Decision during the 30-day public comment period by submitting them in writing to KDHE at the address provided above by U.S. mail and postmarking by September 16, 2022 or by e-mail. Comments may also be submitted to KDHE at the public meeting on September 8.


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