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Kansas City, Missouri Selected to Receive Up to $175,000 to Assist Under-served, Economically Disadvantaged Communities

Release Date: 10/19/2010
Contact Information: Belinda Young, (913) 551-7463, young.belinda@epa.gov


Environmental News


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

(Kansas City, Kan., Oct. 19, 2010) – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced Friday, that the City of Kansas City, Missouri was selected to receive up to $175,000 in grant funds or technical assistance to help facilitate community involvement in developing an area-wide plan for under-served and economically disadvantaged communities. A total of 23 communities nationwide were selected to receive assistance totaling $4 million. EPA is awarding these funds to help facilitate community involvement in developing an area-wide plan for a brownfields impacted area, such as a neighborhood, district, city block or corridor.

This area-wide planning pilot approach is to address community brownfield challenges, which recognizes that revitalization of the area surrounding the brownfield site(s) is just as critical to the successful reuse of the property as assessment, cleanup, and redevelopment of an individual site. The pilot program will help further community-based partnership efforts within underserved or economically disadvantages neighborhoods by confronting local environmental and public health challenges related to brownfields, while creating a planning framework to advance economic development and job creation.

Kansas City will focus on the Municipal Farm property in the Eastwood Hills neighborhood, population 7,053. The property occupies 327 acres, approximately 30 percent of the neighborhood, and encompasses several municipal institutional sites that have either known or perceived environmental risks. Eastwood Hills has a population, median housing value, and median income that are declining faster than the city as a whole. The brownfields area-wide plan will determine the suitability for a community garden in the project area, identify infrastructure and economic development strategies for the brownfields, and determine the types of land use that best meet community needs.

A brownfield site is real property, the expansion, redevelopment, or reuse of which may be complicated by the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substance, pollutant, or contaminant.