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Release Date: 03/11/1999
Contact Information: Amy Miller, EPA Press Office (617-918-1042)

BOSTON - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's New England Office announced today that property owned by Henry's Tire & Wrecking, located on Route 114 in South Sutton, NH, is one of the 14 abandoned, contaminated sites that will be assessed as part of EPA's Brownfields program.

EPA will invest $820,000 to assess environmental conditions of specific sites in 13 New England communities. EPA estimates the site assessment cost for the Sutton project to be $75,000.

"This is an investment in New England's urban centers. Suburban sprawl threatens our environmental and economic future. One way to control sprawl is to reuse forgotten, abandoned urban properties and turn them into urban economic development opportunities," said John P. DeVillars, EPA's New England Administrator. "Brownfields redevelopment is an example of smart economics and smart growth. These site assessments are important steps towards reuse of these properties."

Brownfields are abandoned or under-used industrial and commercial facilities where expansion or redevelopment is being thwarted by real or perceived environmental contamination. EPA's Brownfields program has evolved into a collaborative effort involving more than 15 federal partners. EPA-New England has helped communities restore and develop dozens of contaminated urban properties across New England, resulting in the creation of thousands of jobs and generating millions of dollars in income and tax revenue.

Under the agency's Brownfields program, environmental consultants contracted by EPA will perform the assessments - ranging in value from $35,000 to $75,000 each - to determine the nature and extent of contamination on the properties, and to estimate the costs of cleaning up the site for redevelopment. The assessments, which are scheduled to begin by early summer, generally take several months to complete.

The Sutton lot is a 25.4-acre site that was used as a junk yard and automobile repair shop. The town is interested in developing the property as open space and for housing.