Environmental Investigation for a New Road and Car Park


Burswood Entertainment Complex – 2011 – 2013

MDW Environmental Services (MDWES) was commissioned by Georgiou to provide advice in the mitigation of risk associated with contaminated land at the Burswood Entertainment Complex.  A wide range of environmental services were provided including: Environmental Site Investigation; Soil Management & Remediation; Air Quality Monitoring and Consultation.  The scope of works required the re-alignment of a road with new underground drainage and services to allow for a new multi story car park development.

The Burswood Peninsula on which the Site stands was a former landfill Site.  MDWES was charged with the responsibility of characterising the Site’s soil profile, determining the nature and true depth of the landfill, which included assessing any impact to the soil or groundwater matrix had occurred. Further to this make recommendations for the Environmental Site management.

The Detailed Site investigation (DSI) by MDWES identified that the landfill was uncontrolled and materials within the proposed excavation zone were not limited to inert waste.  During the extensive investigation, MDWES uncovered drums of unknown waste, car parts, metals, plastics, glass and unknown liquids as well as asbestos containing materials (ACM).

Analysis of the soils found elevated concentrations of metals, PAH, BTEXN, TPH/TRH, PCBs, Phenols and ACM within the soil matrix.  A range of remediation options were considered from in-situ treatment and re-use to disposal to landfill.  Due to cost constraints and potential risk of exposure to airborne asbestos fibre disposal was deemed the most appropriate option.

A key component of the DSI was the groundwater monitoring program, which identified elevated concentrations of metals and TPH.  The monitoring of the groundwater bores continued for the duration of the project to ensure that baseline levels recorded for groundwater were not compromised or impacted as part of the excavation works or dewatering on site.

As part of the environmental investigative works MDWES also undertook a soil vapour gas risk assessment. The results of the soil vapour monitoring analyses identified that there was no risk from land gas to the Site workers or to future development.

Due to the uncontrolled nature of ACM within the soil matrix and asbestos concentrations above the Department of Health (DoH) exposure guidelines a program of asbestos hazard awareness was rolled out across the Site.  The objective of the program was to minimise potential exposure to airborne asbestos fibres for all site personnel working within the excavation zones.  The program included training in the use of respiratory protective equipment (RPE) such as half face respirators and personal respirator fit testing as per Australian Standards.

Based on the results of the DSI, it was recommended that an Environmental Site Management Plan (ESMP) for Asbestos (air) and Contaminated Soils be developed and implemented during the remediation / construction phase of works.  A comprehensive ESMP was written and implemented by MDWES with the co-operation of the Client.

As part of the ESMP implementation MDWES oversaw the excavation and removal from Site of soil contaminated with metals, PAH, BTEX, TPH/TRH, PCBs, Phenol and ACM to a landfill facility for processing.  Protocols were also put in place to protect Site workers from environmental hazards such as asbestos fibre and dust.  Protocols included required use of PPE and RPE, decontamination showers and clean areas to change.  Protocols for vehicles entering and leaving site were developed to ensure that any impact was contained within the designated site boundary. An air quality monitoring program was implemented each day for the duration of the excavation works within the landfill Site to ensure the adopted dust suppression techniques were working.  These requirements ensured site worker safety and the well-being of the patrons of the entertainment complex.  The laboratory results of the air monitoring detected a positive result for airborne asbestos material on several occasions.

MDW Environmental Services successfully project managed the development site providing cost effective solutions to a range of environmental issues.  This was achieved through robust communication, fostering a good relationship with the client. Project merits also included paying close attention to the needs of the client so that the project was progressed with minimal intrusion or impact to the Client’s objectives.