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EPA Announces Brownfield Grants to Help Michigan Communities Assess and Clean Up Contaminated Properties and Promote Economic Redevelopment

Brownfields Program helps return blighted properties to productive reuse

04/25/2018
Contact Information: 
Rachel Bassler (bassler.rachel@epa.gov )
312-886-7159

CHICAGO (April 25, 2018) – U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has selected three communities in Michigan for Brownfields environmental Assessment, Revolving Loan Fund, and Cleanup grants. The grants totaling $700,000 will provide communities with funding to assess, clean up and redevelop underutilized properties while protecting public health and the environment.

“EPA’s Brownfields Program expands the ability of communities to recycle vacant and abandoned properties for new, productive reuses, using existing infrastructure," said EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt. "These grants leverage other public and private investments, and improve local economies through property cleanup and redevelopment.”

“Clearly there is no shortage of creativity, innovation and ingenuity when it comes to brownfields redevelopment projects in the great State of Michigan,” said EPA Region 5 Administrator Cathy Stepp. “EPA looks forward to expanding our work with our partners to redevelop brownfields so they can once again be thriving parts of their communities – spurring local economies with jobs and new businesses as well as generating tax revenues and spending.”

The three Michigan grantees are:

  • Allegan: The City of Allegan will receive a $200,000 award to support the redevelopment of the downtown and mill districts. The city will investigate potential contamination as the first step in rehabilitating properties in this district bounded by the Kalamazoo River. Allegan used earlier EPA brownfield funding to investigate properties along the riverfront, resulting in projects that created over 160 jobs and leveraged $17 million in private investment.
     
  • Alpena Authority for Brownfield Redevelopment: Alpena’s Brownfield Redevelopment Authority will receive a $300,000 Brownfield Assessment grant to continue redevelopment efforts in the South Downtown and River neighborhoods. Alpena previously received a Brownfields grant to investigate properties including sites that are now a downtown hotel and new retail locations.
     
  • Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, Redford Charter Township: MDEQ is receiving its second consecutive $200,000 award to clean up a bulk petroleum storage facility. This grant will allow MDEQ to continue remediation of the former General Oil property in Redford Charter Township. EPA grant funds will be used to remove the remaining underground storage tanks and address contaminated soil and groundwater.

“The City of Allegan views the Assessment Funds as the key to unlocking the development potential of two of the City’s most important districts, our Mill District and our Downtown District. These funds will allow the City to work with developers on accomplishing the initial steps of assessing properties as we collectively develop plans to breathe new life into various sites throughout these two districts,” Joel Dye, Allegan City Manager.

“The City of Alpena has made tremendous progress over the past 15 years in redeveloping various brownfield sites within the city. These funds will allow us to continue the repurposing of additional contaminated properties and the furthering of economic development opportunities in Alpena,” Greg Sundin, City of Alpena Michigan, City Manager.

“The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality looks forward to eliminating the blight and contamination from the former General Oil property in Redford Charter Township,” said MDEQ Director C. Heidi Grether. “Cleaning up this site will benefit the neighboring residents and businesses and promote economic development opportunities for the township. We are pleased to receive additional financial support from the U.S. EPA to help fund the remediation and prepare the site for reuse.”

List of the FY 2018 Applicants Selected for Funding: https://www.epa.gov/brownfields/applicants-selected-fy18-brownfields-assessment-revolving-loan-fund-and-cleanup-grants

For more information on the ARC grants: https://www.epa.gov/brownfields/types-brownfields-grant-funding

For more information on EPA’s Brownfields program: https://www.epa.gov/brownfields

For more information on how Brownfields restoration has positively impacted local economies and the quality of life for neighboring communities: https://www.epa.gov/brownfields/brownfields-success-stories

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