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EPA and Partners Mark Opening of New Iberia, LA, Park; Site of former contaminated, abandoned lot transformed into public green space

Release Date: 05/20/2014
Contact Information: Jennah Durant or Joe Hubbard, or 214 665-2200

DALLAS – (May 20, 2014) Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and partner agencies marked the opening of a new public green space in New Iberia, LA. The site, formerly an abandoned and contaminated gas station and service shop, was cleaned and revitalized with the help of grants and technical assistance from EPA.

“All over the country, communities like New Iberia are transforming blighted properties with the help of EPA’s Brownfields program,” said EPA Regional Administrator Ron Curry. “Giving new purpose to this property improves the neighborhood’s sustainability.”

Having been abandoned for several years, the property became an eyesore for the neighborhood near downtown New Iberia. With the surrounding area being mostly residential, and with the scenic Bayou Teche less than 100 feet away, the site clearly had potential for the community. During an assessment of the abandoned site in 2006, EPA found evidence that extensive cleanup would be required in order for it to be put to use again.

Using about $300,000 in funding, including $200,000 in grants from EPA’s Brownfields program, the city of New Iberia cleaned up contamination from the former gas station and car repair shop. The process included removing nearly 345 tons of soil and sealing in new fill with a specially designed membrane. With input from neighborhood residents, the city created a new public green space on the site.

EPA’s Brownfields program supports revitalization of abandoned, contaminated properties in communities with grants for site assessment, cleanup, and job training. Since 1995, the program has leveraged more than $14 billion in funding from the private and public sectors, resulting in almost 61,000 jobs.

More information on EPA’s brownfields Program

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