The Eugene BrownfieldsCoalition is inviting local residents, business owners, and communityorganizations to learn about how the City is working to revitalize localbrownfields. An Open House will take place on Thursday, December 1, from 2 to6pm at the Daydream Island Room at Echo Hollow Pool, located at 1655 EchoHollow Rd. in Eugene. City staff and technical experts will be on hand toanswer questions about the Brownfields Program and to talk about redevelopmentopportunities in the region that may be eligible for funding.
A brownfield is a site that is perceived to have potentialcontamination issues, but in reality the site may or may not have anyenvironmental contamination. Because the property owner may be unsure aboutcontamination and potential liabilities, many of these sites are left‘under-developed’. A brownfield site is often a vacant lot, a vacant building,or a lot with only a small built structure on it. They are consideredunder-developed because they could be providing more to the community if theywere redeveloped into parks, housing, or businesses. As an under-developedsite, a brownfield can be an eyesore and a safety hazard. If redeveloped, thesite could bring value to the neighborhood and the community.
The first step to turning a brownfield into a productive use is anenvironmental assessment, which determines how much contamination is present,if any. By providing funding for an assessment, the Eugene BrownfieldsCoalition can help property owners better understand whether there are actualenvironmental issues on the site, and connect them to tools for cleanup andredevelopment. Assessment is a key step in removing barriers to redevelopmentand enhancing public health and community livability.
The Eugene Brownfields Coalition consists of the Cities of Eugeneand Springfield, and Lane County. The Coalition received a BrownfieldsAssessment Grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in 2013. Sincethen, the Coalition has created an inventory of 400 brownfield opportunitysites, conducted environmental assessments of 15 properties, and planned forredevelopment of brownfields into new housing, commercial uses, and publicspaces. This fall, the Coalition is applying for renewal of these EPA funds tocontinue and build on our revitalization momentum.
For more information on our Brownfields program, please visit www.brownfieldscoalition.org or call 541-682-5540.