Siler City is one of seven communities in North Carolina selected to receive funding from the Environmental Protection Agency for brownfield cleanup and assessment.
The grants, which total more than $ 2.8 million statewide, will help underserved and economically disadvantaged communities across the country assess and clean up contaminated and abandoned industrial and commercial properties.
Siler City will receive an assessment grant of $ 300,000 which will be used to inventory and prioritize the site and to conduct 12 environmental assessments of Phase I and Phase II sites.
Grant funds will also be continued to develop three clean-up plans and support community outreach activities. Assessment activities will focus on the 11th Street Corridor and the 2nd Avenue Corridor.
Priority sites in Siler City include a former 2.3-acre cutting dealership and a cluster of four adjacent vacant plots that previously housed a restaurant, dry cleaner, car wash, and propane dealership.
“Through our Brownfields program, the EPA is delivering on the Biden administration’s commitment to uplift and protect overburdened communities across America, especially communities that have experienced long periods of disinvestment and decay,” EPA administrator Michael S. Regan said in a press release. “These assessment and clean-up grants will not only support economic growth and job creation, but will also enable communities to tackle the environmental, public health and social issues associated with contaminated land.”
“EPA funding for brownfields has a proven track record in transforming communities and turning abandoned and contaminated sites into real public goods,” said John Blevins, EPA Region 4 Acting Administrator . “Brownfield projects stimulate economic development and attract jobs, develop innovative and sustainable partnerships, and can revitalize underserved communities.”
Nationally, the EPA has selected 151 communities to receive 154 grants totaling $ 66.5 million in brownfield funding through its Multi-Purpose, Assessment and Clean-up (MAC) Grants. Approximately 50% of selected grantees will receive first-time EPA Brownfields Grant funding and over 85% are located in or serving small communities. In the Southeast, 37 grants totaling more than $ 14 million will go to organizations or communities in the eight southeastern states of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee.