EPA Selects Manitowoc, Milwaukee to Receive Brownfields Grants Totaling $1.1 Million
Additional grant brings statewide total to $1.4 million to help Wisconsin communities Build Back Better
CHICAGO (May 17, 2021) – Today, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced that Manitowoc and Milwaukee have been selected to receive grant awards totaling $1.1 million in Brownfields funding through its Multipurpose, Assessment and Cleanup (MAC) Grants. The funding will help the two communities assess and cleanup abandoned industrial and commercial properties that have been targeted for redevelopment.
“EPA’s brownfields program is providing critical funding to help empower Wisconsin communities to address the environmental, public health and social issues associated with contaminated land,” said Acting EPA Regional Administrator Cheryl Newton. “EPA commends community leaders for using these funds to take vital steps forward to improve the environment and the local economy. These grants underscore EPA’s commitment to lifting up and protecting all communities - especially overburdened and underserved communities - throughout Wisconsin.”
“I have always been a strong supporter of the EPA’s Brownfields Program and these federal investments in communities across Wisconsin will help lay the groundwork for local efforts to turn brownfield sites into usable spaces that can help revitalize neighborhoods and create economic development,” said Sen. Tammy Baldwin, a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee.
"I am committed to helping build communities free of contaminants and pollutants to protect the public health of Milwaukee residents. That's why I am excited to learn that another EPA Brownfields Grant will be coming to Milwaukee to help remove contaminants and return properties to productive use helping to either create housing or jobs in my district," said Rep. Gwen Moore.
Manitowoc and its project partner, Two Rivers, will use the $600,000 grant to investigate properties in both cities. Priority sites include the Village Square and a railyard and coal transloading site in Manitowoc and the Jay Streu Property in Two Rivers. The award announced today is the sixth received by Manitowoc. The city used previous funding to clean up the former Manitou Manor and Mirro Plant #3 as well as investigating 28 other properties. Private investment of over $61 million has been spent of redevelopment projects at these sites.
“The City of Manitowoc and our partners in Two Rivers and Progress Lakeshore continue to aggressively work on the redevelopment of key brownfield sites and this grant has allowed us to once again access critical assessment funding through the EPA. We appreciate the continued support from the EPA, without which the visible progress currently underway in our communities and future projects would not be possible,” said Manitowoc Mayor Justin Nickels.
The City of Milwaukee will use its $500,000 grant to remediate historic contamination at 3100 W Capitol Drive. The property, which has been vacant since 2010, was used as a gas station and petroleum handling facility. Milwaukee-area governments and not-for-profit organizations have received over 40 EPA brownfield grants since the program began. The funds have been used to complete the cleanup of dozens of sites and the investigation of hundreds more. Hundreds of residents living near Milwaukee brownfield sites have also received training for jobs in the environmental sector through EPA workforce development grants.
“The City of Milwaukee has directed attention and resources to environmental remediation, and we have a lot to show for it. Sites have been cleaned up and repurposed, adding jobs and value to our city. With this newest investment, we will resolve a long-standing environmental issue, and, at the same time, address flooding and transportation problems. I appreciate the support we continue to receive from the EPA,” said Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett.
EPA also announced the City of Stevens Point has been selected for a $300,000 Brownfields Assessment Grant bringing the statewide total to $1.4 million.
“The Wisconsin DNR congratulates the city of Manitowoc, including its partners in Two Rivers and at Progress Lakeshore; along with the cities of Milwaukee and Stevens Point for securing these EPA Brownfields Grants,” said Wisconsin DNR Secretary Preston D. Cole. “For more than 20 years, the DNR has helped hundreds of communities across the state clean up contaminated properties both large and small, revitalizing neighborhoods and improving the air, land and waters of Wisconsin. We look forward to working with these cities and their partners on these important cleanup and redevelopment projects, and stand ready to work with all Wisconsin communities seeking to improve their environmental conditions and redevelop brownfield sites.”
Nationally, a total $65.5 million will be awarded to 151 grantees to support underserved and economically disadvantaged communities across the country assess and clean up contaminated and abandoned industrial and commercial properties. Approximately 50% of selected recipients are receiving EPA Brownfields grant funding for the first time and more than 85% are located in or serving small communities.
The list of the fiscal year 2021 applicants selected for funding is available here:
EPA anticipates that it will award the grants once all legal and administrative requirements are satisfied by the selected recipients.
Since its inception in 1995, EPA's Brownfields Program has provided nearly $1.72 billion in grants to assess and clean up contaminated properties and return them to productive reuse. Communities in Wisconsin have received 163 grants totaling more than $86 million. This has led to significant benefits for communities across the country. For example,
To date, communities participating in the Brownfields Program have been able to attract more than $34.4 billion in cleanup and redevelopment funding after receiving Brownfields funds. This has led to over 175,500 jobs in cleanup, construction, and redevelopment.
Based on grant recipient reporting, recipients leveraged on average $20.13 for each EPA Brownfields dollar and 10.3 jobs per $100,000 of EPA Brownfield Grant funds expended on assessment, cleanup, and revolving loan fund cooperative agreements.
In addition, an academic peer-reviewed study has found that residential properties near brownfield sites increased in value by 5% to 15.2% as a result of cleanup activities.
Finally, analyzing data near 48 brownfields, EPA found an estimated $29 million to $97 million in additional tax revenue for local governments in a single year after cleanup—2 to 7 times more than the $12.4 million EPA contributed to the cleanup of those brownfield sites.
For more on the Brownfields Grants: https://www.epa.gov/brownfields/types-brownfields-grant-funding.
For more on EPA’s Brownfields Program: https://www.epa.gov/brownfields.