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EPA awards over $2.1 Million in Brownfields grants to Bay Area Groups

Release Date: 5/10/2005
Contact Information: Margot Perez-Sullivan; 415-947-4149

SAN FRANCISCO-- Today the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency awarded nearly $2.2 million to eight Bay Area groups for assessment, inventory, redevelopment and cleanup of Bay Area properties.

Nationally, the EPA awarded 302 grants totaling $75.9 million today as part of the agency’s Brownfields program, which provides funding to clean up and redevelop contaminated properties.

“Funding for brownfields projects will allow communities to revitalize properties that have been sitting idle far too long,” said Wayne Nastri, regional administrator of the EPA’s Pacific Southwest office. “The program yields positive results by bringing new life to the under used properties in many communities.”

Grants in the Bay Area include:
San Pablo’s East Bay Asian Local Development Corporation will use $200,000 for site cleanup, community planning, outreach and redevelopment of the city’s under-used and abandoned former industrial sites. Once developed, the site will include 74 affordable homes and 86 affordable rental units.
The city of East Palo Alto was awarded two grants totaling $400,000. The city will use $200,000 to assess the county’s former dump, Cooley’s Landing. Once the site is assessed, cleaned up and restored, it will be opened to the public as a recreational park with historical displays. The BRIDGE Housing Corporation will alleviate the housing crisis by converting industrial sites into 67 affordable housing units for low-income senior households.
The city of Emeryville was awarded two grants totaling $400,000. The city plans to conduct hazardous substances and petroleum assessments in the federally designated “Enterprise Zone” to redevelop the area with housing and services.
North Richmond Community Housing Development Corporation was awarded three grants totaling $600,000. Cleanup of the Oshi, Endo, and Sakai Nursery sites in the Pullman Park Plaza area will remove human and environmental hazards and allow redevelopment in the area with a mix of rental and owner occupied affordable housing.
The city of Petaluma will use $200,000 to create an inventory of potentially contaminated sites and conduct community outreach. A host of industrial activities have been identified as potentially impacting the environment in this historic river town; brownfields redevelopment will attract jobs, and eliminate adverse physical and economic conditions.
Contra Costa County Redevelopment Agency was awarded two grants totaling $200,000. The grant funds will be used to conduct hazardous substance assessments and petroleum assessments of the Bennett’s Marina waterfront site in Rodeo to develop cleanup plans and conduct community outreach activities. The Agency hopes to revitalize the waterfront area, boost the local economy and create jobs.
West Contra Costa Unified School District of Hercules will use $199,420 to cleanup a former wastewater treatment plant, ideal for a school facility. The cleanup and redevelopment of the site will remove potential threats to human health, address the school system’s overcrowding problem and create open space and recreational opportunities to the community.

“The Brownfields Program puts both property and people back to work,” EPA Administrator Steve Johnson said. “These grants will help communities across America convert eyesores into engines of economic rebirth.”

The Brownfields program promotes redevelopment of America's estimated 450,000 abandoned and contaminated waste sites. Since its inception in 1995, the program has awarded 709 assessment grants totaling over $190 million, 189 revolving loan fund grants worth more than $165 million, and $26.8 million for 150 cleanup grants.

In addition to facilitating industrial and commercial redevelopment, Brownfields projects have converted industrial waterfronts to river-front parks, landfills to golf courses, rail corridors to recreational trails, and gas station sites to housing. The program has led to more than $7 billion in public and private investment in cleanup and redevelopment, helped create more than 31,000 jobs, and resulted in the assessment of more than 5,100 properties.

For more information on the grant recipients, go to: