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Oklahoma City gets $300k grant from EPA for environmental assessment projects
The federal Environmental Protection Agency announced a new $300,000 grant to support environmental cleanup of under-used properties ripe for redevelopment.
Vice Mayor and Ward 3 Councilman Larry McAtee accepted the grant Wednesday on behalf of the City of Oklahoma City in a ceremony at City Hall with EPA Region 6 Acting Regional Administrator David Gray.
“Oklahoma City has used Brownfields Assessment Grants since 2006 in more than 100 public and private redevelopment projects,” said Councilman McAtee. “We look forward to focusing these funds on future redevelopments in the Core to Shore area.”
The latest grant brings the total EPA brownfields grant investment in Oklahoma City to more than $10 million. It has helped spark nearly $1 billion in public and private development, according to an EPA database.
Brownfields are under-used properties that can be redeveloped with proper assessment and cleanup of environmental contamination. The Planning Department applies for and administers the competitive grants for Oklahoma City’s Brownfields Program.
“It’s truly a remarkable milestone and speaks to the professionalism, capability and vision of the leaders and city staff in Oklahoma City,” said Gray.
The money will be invested in the Core to Shore area between central Oklahoma City and the Oklahoma River. A third of it is for petroleum assessments, with the rest for other hazardous substances.
The grant is used for environmental assessments. The City also has a revolving loan fund that provides loans to support cleanup and prepares cleanup plans, oversees site cleanups, markets the loan fund and conducts community outreach.
Oklahoma City’s Brownfields Program, like those around the country, catalyzes the potential for private development that generates jobs and spurs economic growth. An EPA Brownfields Program study showed $12.4 million in EPA investment in 48 brownfields sites across the country produced up to $97 million in additional tax revenue for local governments thanks to new growth.
For more information on the EPA’s work in Oklahoma City, the Brownfields page on okc.gov.
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