121-123 Reynolds Street - US EPA Brownfield Cleanup Grant Application

 About the Project

The City of Rochester is applying for grant funding to complete an Environmental Cleanup project at the City-owned property located at 121-123 Reynolds Street (Site). This competitive grant opportunity is part of the United States Environmental Protection Agency’s (USEPA) Brownfield Grant Program which could provide up to $200,000 in funding for the cleanup and remediation of brownfield sites. The Site consists of one (1) parcel of land and totals 0.19 acres. 

Site Background

The subject property was formerly two separate parcels containing a single family dwelling located on the southern portion of the Site, and a former gasoline service station and blacksmith shop on the northern portion of the Site. Subsequent to the City acquiring the parcels via foreclosure in 2008, the parcels were combined into its current single parcel addressed as 121-123 Reynolds Street, Rochester, New York, and the single family house was demolished by the City.

In June 2011, petroleum-type contaminated soil was encountered during excavation of the basement foundation of a new residential house on the adjoining 125 Reynolds Street parcel located immediately south of the Site. The 121-123 Reynolds Street site was the presumed source of the petroleum contamination encountered at 125 Reynolds Street.

The City retained DAY Environmental Services (DAY) to complete a Phase I Environmental Site Assessment (ESA), perform investigative work, and complete some preliminary Interim Remedial Measures (IRMs) at the Site. The investigation included: a geophysical survey, exploratory test pit excavations and soil sampling and analysis, the permanent closure via removal of four (4) 1,000-gallon underground storage tanks (USTs), the removal of approximately 125 tons of petroleum-impacted soil from around the UST excavations, and the collection and analysis of confirmatory soil samples. The DAY Data Package summarizes the environmental investigation and remediation completed in 2011.

On behalf of the City, DAY completed a Phase II ESA in January 2016 under the City’s Brownfield Assistance Program that is funded under a Brownfields Grant from the USEPA. DAY’s scope of work for the Phase II ESA further evaluated the extent and magnitude of soil and groundwater contamination at the Site and included the following scope of work: 

  • Advancement of test borings and field screening of associated soil/fill samples. 
  • Installation, development, and sampling of groundwater monitoring wells including collection of static water levels and other field measurements. 
  • Preparation of a Phase II ESA Report
  • Preparation of an Opinion of Probable Cost for Cleanup

The Site is currently vacant but recent private investments in the area make the Site a prime candidate for new residential redevelopment.

Recognized Environmental Conditions (RECs) at the Site indicated the presence of Volatile Organic Compound (VOC) impacts in soil and groundwater. As part of the grant application, the City will devise a cleanup strategy that would enable the Site to be redeveloped in the future.

Citizen Participation

The City announced its intention to apply for grant funding at the October 19, 2017 meeting of the Southwest Common Council. The USEPA Grant Application Summary - SWCC Meeting October 19 2017 briefly details the site history, and proposed environmental investigation scope of the project. The City is also soliciting letters of support from community members and groups that are interested in community revitalization. The draft Analysis of Brownfield Cleanup Alternatives (ABCA) provides additional detail and a cost comparison of the contaminant remediation options available to the City.

Citizen comments will be addressed and incorporated into the final grant application and submitted to the USEPA for consideration on November 16, 2017.


If you have additional questions about the project or the grant application, contact the City’s project manager: Joseph J. Biondolillo, Associate Environmental Specialist, Division of Environmental Quality (585) 428-6649, or email him.