Panther Island / Central City News

Environmental Remediation on Panther Island

Environmental Remediation is an important part of the local sponsors responsibilities leading up to the construction of the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Bypass Channel. This is important because before USACE can begin constructing the 1.5 mile long bypass channel, which will provide over 2,400 acres of flood protection for our city, the local sponsor must remove any contaminated soil in the area of the future channel.

Due to the historical industrial zoning, numerous environmental problems existed in the project area varying from chemicals and different pollutants including heavy metal contaminants, ground water and petroleum byproducts.

From its inception, the project has been part of a Volunteer Cleanup Program (VCP) through the Texas Commission of Environmental Quality (TCEQ). This means every part of the environmental remediation related to the project is cleaned to residential standards. To date, 18 out of the 27 total properties identified have been cleaned to residential standards. A certificate of completion from TCEQ has been received for each of the 18 parcels.

StarRFoam is the most recent cleanup project taking place in the project area. This is a property located in what will be the North section of the Bypass Channel of the Central City Flood Control Project. USACE requires that property supplied by TRWD for the Project is clean prior to USACE beginning construction. The property was accepted into the Voluntary Cleanup Program (VCP) by TCEQ and has an approved Response Action Plan (RAP) to remediate the site. This project will follow the RAP to clean the site and make it ready for USACE use in the future. The work being done on site includes the removal and hauling of contaminated soils on property to meet TCEQ requirements for a Certificate of Completion from VCP. Once a certificate of completion is received this property will be ready for use by USACE.

To date, over 300,000 cubic yards of contaminated soil has been removed as part of the project. In addition to the removing up of contaminated soil, the remediation efforts have also treated and pumped over 44,000,000 gallons of water. The cleanup is vital to get the areas of the project up to residential standards and ready for the digging of the bypass channel.