EPA is awarding a total of $2 million in Brownfield Assessment and Cleanup Grant dollars to municipalities and organizations across the state of Vermont. Additionally, three communities have been selected by the State of Vermont for inclusion in the Brownfield Economic Revitalization Alliance (BERA) program.
The EPA Brownfields grants, funded by EPA’s Brownfields Assessment, and Cleanup grant program, provide communities with funding necessary to assess, clean up and ultimately redevelop contaminated properties, boost local economies and leverage jobs while protecting public health and the environment.
“EPA is proud to further assist Vermont and its citizens with this Brownfield funding. Cleaning and revitalizing contaminated sites helps create jobs, and can be the catalyst to create new businesses or village centers, all while making our environment cleaner and the community healthier,” said Curt Spalding, regional administrator of EPA New England’s office. “This is just one way EPA works to make a difference in communities all across New England.”
Vermont’s BERA initiative is a collaboration of the Agency of Commerce and Community Development, Agency of Natural Resources, and Agency of Transportation to get brownfield redevelopment projects completed faster, cheaper and easier and to enable communities that host these properties to take full advantage of the benefits of a revitalized downtown center. This is achieved by facilitating better communication between federal, state, regional and local officials, providing priority funding from state programs, and access to coordinated and timely permitting.
“I congratulate the communities of Bellows Falls, Springfield and Richmond for submitting successful applications to participate in the Brownfield Economic Revitalization Alliance program,” noted Governor Peter Shumlin. “Given Vermont’s deep and commonly held understanding of the close relationship between our economic vitality and our environmental health, the BERA program is a model of the collaboration necessary to tackle the complex work of redeveloping contaminated sites. Each of these projects represent an exciting opportunity to improve the lives of Vermont residents and the resilience and livability of our communities. “
Town of Brattleboro: $400,000 Brownfields Assessment Grant
Lamoille County Planning Commission: $400,000 Brownfields Assessment Grant
Central Vermont Regional Planning Commission: $400,000 Brownfields Assessment Grant
Northwest Regional Planning Commission: $200,000 Brownfields Assessment Grant
Springfield Regional Development Corporation: $200,000 Brownfields Cleanup Grant
Two-Rivers Ottauquechee Regional Commission: $400,000 Brownfields Assessment Grant
In New England, since the beginning of the Brownfields program, EPA has awarded 334 assessment grants totaling $97 million, 68 revolving loan fund grants and supplemental funding totaling $85.2 million and 241 cleanup grants totaling $64.5 million. These grant funds have paved the way for more than $2.5 billion in public and private cleanup and redevelopment investment and for nearly 14,458 jobs in assessment, cleanup, construction and redevelopment. These investments and jobs target local, under-served and economically disadvantaged neighborhoods – places where environmental cleanups and new jobs are most needed.
Robertson Paper Mill:
A former Paper Mill, located in Bellows Falls, that was constructed at the turn of the century and has been underutilized for many years will be redeveloped for new industrial space. Rockingham Area Development Corporation is the developer of this property that has environmental contamination from past industrial use. This is a great project to kick-start the Bellows Falls “Island” redevelopment.
Jones and Lamson:
This former tooling facility was one of many that helped create the Pioneer Valley. The Jones and Lamson building has been vacant for over 30 years and has fallen into disrepair. On top of the structural building issues the past uses of this property have left behind a mix of environmental contamination that needs to be remediated. Springfield Regional Development Corporation is the developer of this project and has a planned use for new industrial/commercial space. This project is part of the northern gateway in Springfield and a key piece of Springfield history.
The former Saputo creamery in Richmond has been left vacant and abandoned for many years. The creamery is located in downtown Richmond and is a perfect location for infill. The project needs are large due to asbestos within the dilapidated building and widespread impacts to surficial soils. The developer for the project is looking to create mixed space development that will include housing, commercial and a senior center.