The West Kingston Town Dump/URI Disposal Area site is located along the eastern side of the Chipuxet River Valley in South Kingston, Rhode Island. The 2.6-hectare site is on land that had been part of a sand and gravel quarry since the 1930s and is surrounded on all sides by property at a higher elevation. The West Kingston Town Dump was used as a solid waste dump from 1951 to 1978. Household, commercial, institutional, and industrial wastes were disposed of at the dump. The URI Disposal Area includes at least three separate disposal areas which operated from 1945 to 1987. Wastes disposed of included empty paint cans, oil containers, pesticide containers, lab wastes, lab equipment, machinery, drums, and old tanks.
Surface water in the site vicinity includes Hundred Acre Pond, 500 m west of the site, and Thirty Acre Pond, immediately south of Hundred Acre Pond. The Chipuxet River flows south from Thirty Acre Pond, entering Worden Pond 5.6 km downstream of the site. The Pawcatuck River drains Worden Pond and flows east, entering Little Narragansett Bay approximately 60 km downstream of Worden Pond. The site lies within the Chipuxet River Basin, a major groundwater reservoir that includes 21 m of discontinuous silt, sand, and gravel above the underlying bedrock. The water table is 6 m below ground surface; the overburden and bedrock are treated as a single aquifer due to the absence of any confining layers within a 6.5-km radius of the site.
Groundwater is the major pathway by which site related contaminants can migrate to trust habitats. Regionally, groundwater flows southwest while local flow is west toward Hundred Acre Pond. Due to a history of sand and gravel excavation, the majority of the site is lower in elevation than the surrounding area. Therefore, it is not possible for hazardous substances to migrate offsite via surface water flow.
Hundred Acre Pond, Thirty Acre Pond, and the Chipuxet River are potentially affected by the site.