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Wrentham, Mass. Receives $200,000 Brownfields Grant

Release Date: 08/19/2008
Contact Information: Jeanethe Falvey, (617) 918-1020

(Boston, Mass. – August 19, 2008) - The United States Environmental Protection Agency has awarded the Town of Wrentham, Massachusetts $200,000 for a Brownfield’s cleanup grant. Brownfields grants aid communities in the process of revitalizing former industrial and commercial sites, transforming them into green-space and turning them back into community assets.

Through a competitive national selection process, EPA awards Brownfields grants to help pay for the assessment, cleanup and redevelopment of abandoned, contaminated parcels - ‘brownfields’. Often these parcels are abandoned or not dealt with because they are too expensive or risky for a community to address or invest in with the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substances or pollutants.

"EPA’s Brownfields program has had incredible success helping New England communities revitalize overlooked and abandoned properties,” said Robert W. Varney, regional administrator of EPA's New England regional office. "What were once perhaps dangerous or unsightly areas, will now become a source of revenue as they provide for skilled jobs, greater real estate potential and a cleaner environment.”

The grant funding for the town of Wrentham will go towards cleaning up the Marra property at 775 South Street, a former sand and gravel pit that was then used as a junk yard after the 1970s. Soil at the site is contaminated with dieldrin and other hazardous materials.

"This grant is a great opportunity for the Town of Wrentham, now we can move forward with projected development of that area that we have been planning for the past several years. We are grateful for the help that his grant will provide, it will be a tremendous boost for our local economy," stated John J. McFeeley, Town Administrator for Wrentham, Mass.

EPA's Brownfields program promotes redevelopment of America's estimated 450,000 abandoned and contaminated waste sites. EPA estimates that every acre of reclaimed Brownfields saves 4.5 acres of green space which, on average, has doubled the value of surrounding properties. Municipalities and select organizations can also receive funding for cleanup grants and to establish revolving loan programs that provide low interest loans for cleanups.

In addition to industrial and commercial redevelopment, Brownfields projects have converted industrial waterfronts to riverfront parks, rail corridors to recreational trails, landfills to golf courses and gas stations to housing.

For more information:

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Brownfields in New England (epa.gov/region1/brownfields)
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National information on Brownfields (epa.gov/brownfields)

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