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EXTON, Pa. - All field work outlined in a $2.1 million agreement between the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Louis and Ruth Frame, former owners of the A.I.W. Frank portion of this Chester County Superfund site has been completed.
The $2.1 million agreement required the Frames to perform cleanup work valued at $1 million and pay $1.1 million toward EPA’s past site costs. Another provision allows the Frames to reacquire the property with a resell option.
Field work included removal of drums from one of the buildings and PCB-contaminated sediment from an on-site sump and drainage ditch, repair of a building and disposal of an area of contaminated soil. Four fuel oil underground storage tanks also were removed under the guidelines of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection.
The Frames still must seed the excavated areas, establish controls to prevent the installation of wells around the ground water plume, and maintain carbon filter treatment units, previously installed to remove contaminants from the drinking water of nearby residents.
Several manufacturing facilities previously conducted operations at the site, which includes two adjoining parcels of land covering approximately 16 acres. The Frames owned the larger portion of the site from 1969 to 1975 and leased it to A.I.W. Frank, a corporation that used hazardous chemicals to produce styrofoam cups and plates. A.I.W. Frank purchased the property in 1975 and eventually went bankrupt.
In 1981, Continental Refrigerator Corporation acquired the property to manufacture refrigerators and freezers, and also later declared bankruptcy. The Mid-County Mustang portion of the site is approximately one acre. EPA currently is negotiating with the owners of that portion of the site. Work on the Mid-County Mustang portion will include construction of a new water supply line and a plant to treat contaminated groundwater.
More than 900 people live within one mile of the property. West Valley Creek, which flows through the site, is used for recreational activities. The area surrounding the site, which was originally farmland, is undergoing rapid development including residential, commercial and light industrial areas.