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EPA selects nine Pacific Northwest and Alaska projects to receive $4.59 million for Brownfields cleanup and assessment

149 communities nationwide to receive $64.6 million in Brownfields grants

06/05/2019
Contact Information: 
Bill Dunbar (dunbar.bill@epa.gov)
206-553-1019

SEATTLE - Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is announcing that nine Northwest and Alaska communities have been selected to receive a total of $4.59 million to assess and clean up contaminated properties under the agency’s Brownfields program. (For details see attached project snapshots list)

Nationwide, 149 communities have been selected to receive 151 grant awards totaling $64,623,553 in EPA Brownfields funding through our Multipurpose, Assessment, and Cleanup Grant Programs. These funds will aid under-served and economically disadvantaged communities in opportunity zones and other parts of the country in assessing and cleaning up abandoned industrial and commercial properties. Forty percent of the communities selected for funding will receive assistance for the first time.

“These grants fulfill several of President Trump’s top priorities simultaneously: helping communities in need transform contaminated sites into community assets that not only create jobs and jumpstart economic development but also improve public health and the environment,” said EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler. “We are targeting these funds to areas that need them the most. Approximately 40 percent of the selected recipients are receiving Brownfields grants for the first time, which means we are reaching areas that may previously been neglected, and 108 of the selected communities have identified sites or targeted areas for redevelopment that fall within Opportunity Zones.”

One hundred and eight communities selected nationally for grants this year have identified sites or targeted areas in census tracts designated as federal Opportunity Zones. An Opportunity Zone is an economically distressed community where new investment, under certain conditions, may be eligible for preferential tax treatment.

Background

Grants awarded by EPA’s Brownfields Program provide communities across the country with an opportunity to transform contaminated sites into community assets that attract jobs and achieve broader economic development outcomes while taking advantage of existing infrastructure. For example, Brownfields grants have been shown to:

Increase Local Tax Revenue: A study of 48 brownfields sites found that an estimated $29 million to $97 million in additional local tax revenue was generated in a single year after cleanup. This is two to seven times more than the $12.4 million EPA contributed to the cleanup of these sites.

Increase Residential Property Values: Another study found that property values of homes near revitalized brownfields sites increased between 5% and 15% following cleanup.

A Brownfields property is a parcel for which the expansion, redevelopment, or reuse may be complicated by the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substance, pollutant, or contaminant. There are estimated to be more than 450,000 brownfields in the U.S.

As of May 2019, 30,153 properties have been assessed under the EPA Brownfields Program, and 86,131 acres of idle land have been made ready for productive use. In addition, communities have been able to use Brownfields grants to leverage 150,120 jobs and more than

$28 billion of public and private funding.

The 2019 National Brownfields Training Conference will be held on December 11-13 in Los Angeles. Offered every two years, this conference is the largest gathering of stakeholders focused on cleaning up and reusing formerly utilized commercial and industrial properties. EPA cosponsors this event with the International City/County Management Association.

Region 10 Brownfields Projects

Anchorage, Alaska

Shelley Rowton, 907-343-7531

Assessment Grant: $300,000 hazardous substances, $300,000 petroleum

EPA has selected the Municipality of Anchorage for a Brownfields Assessment Coalition Grant. Community-wide hazardous substances and petroleum grant funds will be used to conduct 10 Phase I and 10 Phase II environmental site assessments and prepare six cleanup plans and two site reuse plans. Grant funds also will be used to prioritize brownfields and support community outreach activities. The five target areas for this grant are East Downtown/Fairview/Ship Creek, Downtown Core, Midtown/Spenard, Mountain View, and Chugiak/Eagle River. Coalition partners are the Anchorage Community Development Authority and Eklutna Inc.

Ponderay, Idaho

Erik Brubaker, 208-265-5468

Multipurpose Grant: $800,000 hazardous substances

EPA has selected the City of Ponderay for a Brownfields Multipurpose Grant. Hazardous substances grant funds will be used to conduct four Phase I and one Phase II environmental site assessments and clean up the Panhandle Smelting and Refining Company site, which sits along the undeveloped Pend d’Oreille Bay Trail with concrete abutments and a large slag heap on the lake’s edge. This undeveloped trail has the potential to connect Ponderay with the lakefront cities of Sandpoint and Kootenai.

Beaverton, Oregon

David Tetrick, 503-526-2537

Assessment Grant: $200,000 hazardous substances, $100,000 petroleum

EPA has selected the City of Beaverton for a Brownfields Assessment Grant. Community-wide hazardous substances and petroleum grant funds will be used to conduct 10 Phase I and five Phase II environmental site assessments. Grant funds also will be used to develop a Public Involvement Plan and conduct community engagement and cleanup planning activities. The target area for this grant is the Creekside District located in Beaverton’s downtown.

Prosper Portland, Oregon

Colin Polk, 503-823-3211

Cleanup Grant/OPPORTUNITY ZONE: $500,000 hazardous substances

EPA has selected Prosper Portland for a Brownfields Cleanup Grant. Hazardous substances grant funds will be used to clean up the former USPS Portland Processing and Distribution Center located at 715 NW Hoyt Street in the City of Portland. The 14-acre site is located in an area known as the Broadway Corridor, which is near Portland’s Central Business District. From 1882 to 1959, the eastern area of the site was owned by the Northern Pacific Terminal Company, which conducted railyard operations on the site. From 1893 until the 1930s, a manufactured gas plant operated in the northwest corner of the site. The site was used as a USPS mail processing facility from 1962 until 2018 when it was vacated. The site is contaminated with polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, ethylbenzene and metals. Grant funds also will be used to conduct community outreach activities, such as convening public meetings and developing fact sheets and webpages.

City of Olympia, Washington

Mike Reid, 360-753-8591

Assessment Grant: $500,000 hazardous substances, $100,000 petroleum

EPA has selected the City of Olympia for a Brownfields Assessment Coalition Grant. Community- wide hazardous substances grant funds will be used to conduct ten Phase I and eight Phase II environmental site assessments and develop four cleanup plans. Community-wide petroleum grant funds will be used to conduct four Phase I, and two Phase II, environmental site assessments and develop one cleanup plan. Grant funds of both types also will be used to update the city’s brownfields inventory and conduct community outreach and reuse planning activities. Assessment activities will focus the Peninsula and West Bay neighborhoods. Coalition partners are the Port of Olympia and the Olympia Metropolitan Park District.

Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation, Okanogan and Ferry counties, Washington

Amelia Stranger, 509-634-2585

Assessment Grant (OPPORTUNITY ZONE): $154,337 hazardous substances, $145,663 petroleum

EPA has selected the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation for a Brownfields Assessment Grant. Community-wide hazardous substances and petroleum grant funds will be used to conduct three Phase I and seven Phase II environmental site assessments. Grant funds also will be used to develop three cleanup plans and conduct reuse planning and community outreach activities, including holding three public meetings. The target area for this grant consists of five priority sites, including three wood products facilities, a blighted residential property, and the chemical handling area of the former Hinman Ranch.

Port of Skagit County, Sedro-Woolley, Washington

Heather Rogerson, 360-757-9828

Cleanup Grant: $395,000 hazardous substances

EPA has selected the Port of Skagit County for a Brownfields Cleanup Grant. Hazardous substances grant funds will be used to clean up two areas of the former Northern State Hospital Campus at 2070 Northern State Road in the City of Sedro-Woolley. The 225-acre site operated as a mental health hospital beginning in 1912. The former hospital functioned as a self- contained community with over 600,000 square feet of buildings, a power plant, landfill, and maintenance shops all housed on the site. The site is currently home to the Cascades Job Corps workforce training program, a chemical dependency treatment center, and a mental health evaluation and treatment center. Cleanup Grant funds will focus on the former laundry building and gymnasium field areas within the larger hospital property. Groundwater, soil, and soil vapor at the Former Laundry Building site are contaminated with chlorinated solvents. Elevated concentrations of arsenic have been found in the shallow soil at the gymnasium field. Grant funds also will be used to conduct community involvement activities, including facilitating community meetings.

Spokane, Washington

Teri Stripes, 509-625-6597

Assessment Grant: $450,000 hazardous substances, $150,000 petroleum

EPA has selected the City of Spokane for a Brownfields Assessment Coalition Grant. Community-wide hazardous substances grant funds will be used to conduct nine Phase I and six Phase II environmental site assessments and to prepare six cleanup plans and four reuse plans. Community-wide petroleum grant funds will be used to conduct five Phase I, and two Phase II, environmental site assessments and to prepare two cleanup plans and two reuse plans. Grant funds of both types also will be used to update the inventory of brownfield sites and conduct community outreach activities. The target area for this grant is the 770-acre University District located along the Spokane River. Coalition partners are the University District Public Development Authority, Washington State University Health Sciences Spokane, Gonzaga University, and the Empire Health Foundation.

Trust for Public Land, East Wenatchee, Washington

Cary Simmons, 206-274-2908

Cleanup Grant: $500,000 hazardous substances

EPA has selected the Trust for Public Land for a Brownfields Cleanup Grant. Hazardous substances grant funds will be used to clean up the 9th Street Park site at the 400 block of 9th Street NE in the City of East Wenatchee. The 2.3-acre site operated as a cherry orchard from the 1930s until 2008. The cherry trees were removed in 2011. The site is contaminated with metals and arsenic, which are common in the East Wenatchee area due to the region’s history of orchard cultivation. Grant funds also will be used to conduct community engagement activities and develop a site management plan that educates site workers on the soil condition and outlines safe practices while conducting site work.

List of all applicants selected for Brownfields funding:

https://wcms.epa.gov/brownfields/applicants-selected-fy19-brownfields-multipurpose-assessment-and-cleanup-grants

Brownfields Grants: https://www.epa.gov/brownfields/types-brownfields-grant-funding grant-funding

EPA’s Brownfields Program: https://www.epa.gov/brownfields

2019 Brownfields Conference: https://www.brownfields2019.org/

“Brownfields: Properties with New Purpose, Improving Local Economies in Communities with Brownfield Sites”: https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2019-06/documents/bf_booklet.pdf