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Hazardous Waste Cleanup: F. Bowie Smith and Son, Incorporated in Baltimore, Maryland

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Cleanup Status

  • On December 5, 2012, F. Bowie submitted the RCRA Facility Investigation/Corrective Measures Study (RFI/CMS).
  • The former F. Bowie Smith & Sons Facility (F. Bowie Smith), now owned by Birchwood Realty Co., Inc. (Birchwood), entered the Facility Lead Program on April 4, 2005. RCRA Corrective Action activities at this facility are being conducted under the direction of EPA Region 3 with assistance from the State of Maryland. The site characterization process is complete.
  • On May 20, 2015, F. Bowie Smith performed groundwater sampling at the site to evaluate current conditions at the site.
  • On June 28, 2016, EPA issued a Statement of Basis (SB) in which it described the information gathered during environmental investigations at the Facility and proposed a Final Remedy for the Facility.
  • Consistent with the public participation provisions under RCRA, EPA solicited public comment on its proposed Final Remedy.  On July 7, 2016, notice of the SB was published on the EPA website and in a local newspaper.  The comment period ended on August 6, 2016. 
  • Since EPA did not receive any comments on the SB and EPA has determined it was not necessary to modify the proposed Final Remedy set forth in the SB, the remedy proposed in the SB is the Final Remedy selected by EPA for the Facility on August 9, 2016.
    EPA's Final Remedy for the Facility consists of the following:
    • Monitored natural attenuation  
    • Compliance with and maintenance of land and groundwater use restrictions 
  • An environmental covenant was signed by F. Bowie, EPA and MDE on January 31, 2018 which subjects the property to institutional controls.

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Site Description

Interactive Map of F. Bowie Smith and Son, Incorporated, Baltimore, Maryland

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F. Bowie Smith operated a wood-treatment facility at the site from 1952 until 1985. From 1982 until 1988, the site was partially occupied by the Chesapeake Wood Company, a firm that provided wholesale and custom lumber. The Chesapeake Wood Company was not engaged in chemically treating wood, but treated wood was stored on site. A Preliminary Assessment was completed in 1988 and a Site Inspection was conducted in 1990.

Site buildings were demolished, and two geomembrane and soil caps were installed in the northwest area of the site, pursuant to an amended Consent Order between the State of Maryland and Birchwood Realty. The most recent groundwater monitoring report was submitted in December 2008.

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Contaminants at this Facility

Contaminants of concern at the site, in both soil and groundwater, are pentachorophenol (PCP), creosote-derived constituents (mainly naphthalene), arsenic, and chromium.

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Institutional and Engineering Controls at this Facility

Institutional /Engineering Control Summary
Restrictions or Controls that Address: Yes No
Restrictions or Controls that Address: Yes No
Groundwater Use
Residential Use
Vapor Intrusion
Capped Area(s)
Other Engineering Controls
Other Restrictions

    Institutional Controls for the facility include:
    • Groundwater at the Facility shall not be used for any purpose other than the operation, maintenance, and monitoring activities required by MDE and/or EPA.
    • No new wells shall be installed on Facility property.
    • A vapor intrusion control system, the design of which shall be approved advance by EPA, shall be installed in each current and new structure constructed at the facility unless it is demonstrated to EPA that vapor intrusion does not pose a threat to human health and EPA provides prior written approval.
    • On an annual basis and whenever requested by EPA, the then current property owner shall submit to EPA and MDE a written certification stating whether or not the groundwater and land use restrictions are in place and being complied with.
    • The Facility shall be restricted to commercial and/or industrial purposes and shall not be used for residential purposes unless the then current landowner demonstrates to EPA that such use will not pose a threat to human health or the environment or adversely affect or interfere with the selected remedy and the Facility obtains prior written approval from EPA for such use.
    • The Facility shall not be used in any way that will adversely affect or interfere with the integrity and protectiveness of the capped areas unless the then current landowner demonstrates to MDE and EPA that such use will not pose a threat to human health or the environment, and MDE and EPA provide prior written approval for such disturbance. The then current landowner will also develop and implement a Cap Management Plan. The Cap Management Plan shall be submitted for EPA and MDE review and approval and, at a minimum, must include: the procedures to maintain the cap over the contaminated soil; a schedule for inspections to be performed as part of cap maintenance, no less frequent than once a year; and physical maintenance requirements of the capped areas to prevent degradation of the cap and unacceptable exposure to the underlying soil.

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    Land Reuse Information at this Facility

    The facility is under continued use.

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    Site Responsibility at this Facility

    RCRA Corrective Action activities at this facility are being conducted under the direction of the EPA Region 3 with assistance from Maryland Department of Environmental Protection.

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