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Bellingham Awarded $100,000 EPA Brownfields Assessment

Release Date: 06/20/2002
Contact Information: Andrew Spejewski, EPA Press Office, 617-918-1014

BELLINGHAM, MASS. – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced today that it is awarding a targeted Brownfields assessment grant valued at $100,000 to the town of Bellingham. Under the award, EPA will assess environmental contamination at a 20-acre former mill property, providing the town and potential developers with information that will help facilitate eventual cleanup and redevelopment of the site.

"Towns like Bellingham are working very hard to make their communities productive and livable and they're focusing particular attention on parcels that have been used before and can be re-used again," said Ira Leighton, deputy regional administrator for EPA's New England Office, speaking at the site today during a ceremony with town officials. "This grant is going to give Bellingham the information it needs to put this mill property back to productive use."

Across the country, EPA estimates there are between 500,000 and one million Brownfields – properties that are abandoned or underdeveloped because of contamination or fear of contamination. EPA has awarded $52 million in brownfields grants across New England to date, including $24 million to communities in Massachusetts. Across New England, these grants have led to 640 completed site assessments, $300 million leveraged for redevelopment and more than 2,000 jobs created.

The assessment awarded to Bellingham will evaluate a 20-acre former mill site on the Charles River. The assessment will aid Bellingham in determining what contamination exists from the operation of the mill, and give the town and potential developers the necessary information to start the process of cleaning up and redeveloping the site. Bellingham's plans for redeveloping the site include affordable senior housing.

Also today, EPA announced targeted Brownfields assessments for the towns of Essex and Foxborough, Mass. The two assessments are worth a total of $150,000. Today's announcement follows Monday's announcement of three assessments to Connecticut towns, valued at $200,000