Brownfield Redevelopment Program
What is a brownfield?
The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) defines brownfields as "abandoned, idled, or under-utilized industrial and commercial facilities where expansion or redevelopment is complicated by real or perceived environmental contamination." The term "brownfield" was first used to distinguish developed land from unused suburban and rural land, referred to as "greenfield" sites.
As the EPA definition suggests, land reuse issues can often create challenges because of perceived - not actual - contamination. Most land in urban areas is well suited for redevelopment (because of the presence of existing infrastructure, etc.) and is not contaminated. Even when land does face environmental contamination, it often can be redeveloped at a reasonable cost and in a timely manner.
The purpose of Kent's Brownfields program is to create jobs and generate tax revenues through industrial and neighborhood redevelopment on brownfield sites.
In 2012, the City of Kent was awarded two United States Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) Community-Wide Assessment Grants to provide up to $400,000 in funding to support the reuse and revitalization of properties within the City. In conjunction with the U.S. EPA Grants, the City is soliciting the support and involvement of community-based organizations and the general public in the development of a sustainable Site Reuse and Revitalization Program.
The U.S. EPA grants support five general types of activities – all of which are relevant to the City’s priority reuse/revitalization initiatives:
• Conducting a community-wide inventory of potential opportunity sites;
• Identifying priority opportunity sites and conducting assessment activities;
• Planning for cleanup and reuse;
• Community outreach; and
• Planning for revitalization of priority areas or corridors.
The goal of the U.S. EPA program is to turn underutilized sites from community blight to community benefit, restoring them to safe, viable properties that contribute to the economic wellbeing of the City. Additional sources of State or Federal funding may be sought for cleanup/revitalization work.
For more information contact:
Josh Hall, Economic Development Specialist at 253-856-5707 or JHall@KentWA.gov