EPA has received anecdotal reports from residents that materials excavated during the construction of the Walt Whitman Bridge, potentially containing contaminants, were used as fill dirt prior to construction of some homes in the area. During the early stages of the site investigation in 2017 and 2018, EPA sampled the surface soil of 21 residential properties in these areas. The results of the sampling did not show contaminant concentrations that would pose a human health risk. The results also did not show a relationship between the soil sampled and contaminants identified in the surface soils of the Norwood Landfill.
For Site Investigations, sampling activities must be based upon the identification of a potential source of contamination. The anecdotal information on landfill activities from long-time residents and historic aerial photos indicate the Winona Homes neighborhood should be the focus of EPA’s investigation. EPA will conduct additional residential sampling in 2020 to further evaluate the soil conditions in the Winona Homes neighborhood. The additional sampling will help to answer the questions posed by residents of whether fill has been placed in this Neighborhood and whether the fill contains contaminants in the surface and sub-surface at levels which are a threat to human health.