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News Releases from Region 05

EPA Brownfields Funding Announced for Eau Claire, Green Bay, Sheboygan, Washington County and Wauwatosa

05/31/2017
Contact Information: 
Joshua Singer (Singer.joshua@epa.gov)
312-353-5069

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

May 31, 2017

CHICAGO – Today, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency selected 172 communities and organizations across the country, including Eau Claire, Green Bay, Sheboygan, Washington County and Wauwatosa in Wisconsin, to receive funding for brownfields site revitalization to help local governments redevelop vacant and unused properties, transforming communities and local economies.

“EPA is committed to working with communities to redevelop Brownfields sites which have plagued their neighborhoods. EPA’s Assessment and Cleanup grants target communities that are economically disadvantaged and include places where environmental cleanup and new jobs are most needed," said EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt. "These grants leverage considerable infrastructure and other investments, improving local economies and creating an environment where jobs can grow. I am very pleased the President’s budget recognizes the importance of these grants by providing continued funding for this important program.”

The following communities and organizations in Wisconsin were selected to receive funding:

  • Green Bay was selected to receive a $300,000 Brownfields Assessment Grant to investigate environmental conditions at properties with redevelopment potential.  The city will focus efforts on sites in the Broadway, Velp Avenue, and University Avenue corridors.  Previous EPA brownfields grants to Green Bay have funded dozens of environmental investigations and redevelopment projects, including Schreiber Foods, the world’s largest employee-owned dairy.
  • The Blugold Real Estate Foundation Inc. in Eau Claire was selected to receive two Brownfields Cleanup Grants totaling $400,000.  Grant funds will be used to clean up contaminated soil at the former County Materials Corp. properties at 1061 and 1111 Menomonie St. in Eau Claire.  When cleanup is completed plans call for an event and recreation center to be developed at the site.
  • Washington County was selected to receive a $600,000 Brownfields Coalition Assessment Grant to investigate environmental conditions at properties with redevelopment potential. The communities of Hartford, West Bend, Jackson, Richfield and Slinger will use this grant to continue their brownfields redevelopment efforts. A 2014 EPA brownfields grant has resulted in multiple assessments and a brownfields inventory that includes a reuse project in Slinger. The reuse project is projected to create 19 full time jobs, $3.2 million in increased tax base, and $3.5 million in additional sales.
  • The city of Wauwatosa was selected to receive a $200,000 Brownfields Assessment Grant to continue its brownfields redevelopment efforts, with an emphasis on projects in Redevelopment District One and Mid-Town Tosa, both areas of high brownfields concentration. Previous EPA brownfields grants to Wauwatosa have resulted in over $20 million in leveraged funding from state, federal and private investment.
  • Sheboygan County was selected to receive a $300,000 Brownfields Assessment Grant to focus on Sheboygan’s downtown and areas along the Sheboygan River.  These neighborhoods have seen successful redevelopment in recent years and include some of the oldest industrial and manufacturing sites in the city.

Studies have shown that residential property values near brownfields sites that are cleaned up increased between 5 and 15 percent and can increase property values in a 1.24-mile radius of that site. A study analyzing data near 48 brownfields sites shows an estimated $29 million to $97 million in additional tax revenue was generated for local governments in a single year after cleanup. This is two to seven times more than the $12.4 million EPA contributed to those brownfields.

As of May 2017, more than 124,759 jobs and $24 billion of public and private funding have been leveraged as a result of assessment grants and other EPA brownfields grants. On average, $16.11 was leveraged for each EPA brownfields dollar and 8.5 jobs leveraged per $100,000 of EPA brownfields funds expended on assessment, cleanup, and revolving loan fund cooperative agreements.

List of the FY 2017 Applicants Selected for Funding: https://www.epa.gov/brownfields/brownfields-list-fy17-grants-selected-funding

About EPA’s brownfields program: https://epa.gov/brownfields.

Successful brownfields stories: https://www.epa.gov/brownfields/brownfields-success-stories.