The City of Richmond has been awarded an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Community-Wide Brownfields Assessment Grants for Petroleum and Hazard Substance Sites. The total award of $400,000 consists of $200,000 designated for Petroleum Sites and $200,000 for Hazardous Substance Sites.
The City’s Department of Economic and Community Development (ECD) will administer the grant funding. ECD aggressively pursued and obtained this highly competitive grant funding, and is one of 240 grant awardees nationwide. Only 106 of the 240 grant awardees support communities with populations greater than 100,000. This community-wide grant covers costs associated with the completion of Phase I and II Environmental Site Assessments for eligible property owners or prospective purchasers of previously used commercial and industrial properties. The grant period begins October 1, 2013 and concludes September 30, 2016.
“This EPA grant will allow the City to continue to promote and encourage economic development throughout the city as well as provide a potential source for additional open space amenities for Enterprise Zone neighborhoods,” said Mayor Dwight C. Jones. “Any additional tools that help entice businesses and employers to the City of Richmond and to our Enterprise Zones are a welcomed opportunity as that increases the city’s tax base.”
Brownfields Assessment Grant funding will facilitate the assessment, remediation, and redevelopment of Enterprise Zone Brownfield sites for the creation of commercial/mixed-use projects in commercial areas such as the Hull Street Corridor and new modernized industrial facilities such as those targeted for the Commerce Road Corridor or the Port of Richmond. The proposed assessment areas are well aligned with Mayor Jones’ Sustainability Initiative, recommendations from the Richmond Region Green Infrastructure Report, the Groundwork Richmond VA Feasibility Study and Strategic Plan, and the City’s Downtown Master Plan.
The City plans to use a Brownfields Advisory Committee to assist with site identification and dissemination of grant information. The Advisory Committee’s quarterly meetings will be open to the public.