EPA's Brownfields Program empowers states, communities, and other stakeholders to work together to prevent, assess, safely clean up, and sustainably reuse brownfields. 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. The Small Business Liability Relief and Brownfields Revitalization Act of 2002, as amended by the Brownfields Utilization, Investment and Local Development Act of 2018, was passed to help states and communities around the country clean up and revitalize brownfield sites. Under this law, EPA provides financial assistance to eligible applicants through five competitive grant programs: Multipurpose Grants, Assessment Grants, Revolving Loan Fund Grants, Cleanup Grants, and Environmental Workforce Development and Job Training Grants. Additionally, funding support is provided to state and tribal response programs through a separate mechanism.
EPA has selected the City of Bloomington for a Brownfields Assessment Grant. Community-wide grant funds will be used to update the city's brownfields inventory, prioritize sites, and conduct up to 12 Phase I and up to 10 Phase II environmental site assessments. Grant funds also will be used to develop up to 10 cleanup plans and support community outreach activities. Assessment activities will focus on the city's College Avenue/Walnut Street Corridor, which serves as one of the primary residential and employment centers for Bloomington. Priority sites include a 24-acre abandoned hospital, a 5.4-acre scrap and recycling yard, a gas company maintenance garage, a former automobile manufacturing plant, an auto junkyard, and a former lumber yard.