Congresswoman Louise Slaughter (D-Fairport) has announced a $200,000 Brownfield grant from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to develop a comprehensive plan to clean up the Jay Orchard Street Neighborhood, according to a press release.
Slaughter said the grant will allow the study of site redevelopment feasibility alternatives, analyze the economic impact of those alternatives, and continue the momentum underway for the revitalization of the site, and the neighborhood.
“Clean and safe neighborhoods are important for every family in Rochester, and essential if we want to attract new businesses and residents to our area,” Slaughter stated. “I’m glad that the EPA has given us the resources to make our neighborhoods more livable, and I look forward to seeing progress on cleaning up abandoned properties, and rebuilding this area.”
In 2002, the Small Business Liability Relief and Brownfields Revitalization Act was passed to help states, and communities, around the country clean up and revitalize brownfields sites, officials stated.
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.
In addition, according to officials, the Orchard-Whitney site has been home to numerous industrial entities since the 1900s, but has been vacant since 2008.
Through the EPA’s Brownfields Area-Wide Planning Program, the organization has provided financial assistance to eligible applicants through competitive grant programs for brownfields site assessment, site cleanup, revolving loan funds, area-wide planning, and job training.
Additional funding support has been provided to state and tribal response programs through a separate mechanism.
The EPA also assists communities in responding to local brownfields challenges, particularly where multiple brownfield sites are in close proximity, connected by infrastructure, and limit the economic, environmental and social prosperity of their surroundings, officials said.
The Charles Settlement House and Charles House Neighbors in Action will work in partnership with the city on the project.