Author ORCID Identifier

Year of Publication


Degree Name

Master of Science in Civil Engineering (MSCE)

Document Type

Master's Thesis




Civil Engineering

First Advisor

Dr. Kelly G. Pennell


Hazardous waste sites and aging wastewater infrastructure are common in the United States. There are hundreds of thousands of contaminated sites and more than a million miles of sewer pipes. Populations living close to hazardous waste sites often suffer from increased risk of adverse health effects due to exposure to contaminated environmental media. Vapor intrusion is one process by which nearby populations can be exposed to volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Aging wastewater infrastructure is important for vapor intrusion site assessments because sewer pipes can serve as preferential vapor transport pathways. Near contaminated sites, pipe deterioration allows migration of contaminants into sewers and potential accumulation of chemical vapors in sewer gas and nearby buildings. The objectives of this study are to develop a screening-level method to identify contaminated sites where additional evaluation of vapor intrusion is necessary, and then conduct field sampling at these sites to investigate sewers as potential vapor intrusion pathways. Sampling was conducted at four study sites, which consist of former and current dry cleaning facilities located in Lexington, Kentucky. The results of this study demonstrate that preferential vapor intrusion pathways such as sewers can facilitate the spread of vapor intrusion exposure risks beyond source areas of contamination.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)