City given $400K toward environmental cleanup projects

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The city of Wilson already has used more than $1 million in federal funds for environmental cleanup and recently received $400,000 more.

“The award of EPA supplemental funding is a significant achievement for Wilson’s brownfield program,” Wilson Planning and Community Development Manager John Morck said. “As of March 31, the program has three cleanup projects that either have been completed or are nearing completion. This totals nearly 55,000 square feet on 1.24 acres, which have been remediated and are now usable for redevelopment or recreation. Projects supported by the city through the EPA (revolving loan fund) project have and continue to bring significant capital investment into the project areas.”

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency release, Wilson was among two dozen communities granted $9.3 million total as a way to support the remediation and redevelopment of sites contaminated with hazardous substances or pollutants.

“The supplemental funds will allow the city to continue the efforts of cleanup of brownfields sites through the EPA revolving loan fund Program,” said Michelle Brown, Wilson’s brownfield program manager.

So far, the city has used $1,055,359 in funds to provide low-interest loans and sub-grants to those planning to cleanup contaminated sites.

“Brownfields funding will provide the city of Wilson with resources to clean up contaminated lands and return them to productive use,” EPA Region 4 Administrator Mary S. Walker said in the release. “These funds will leverage additional resources and help support an enhanced quality of life for these communities.”

Once a project is complete and the loan is repaid, the amount is returned to the fund and the money is lent to a new brownfields reuse project.

“In addition to spurring economic redevelopment in the area and the creating of local jobs, the EPA revolving loan fund grant has been and will continue to be used to benefit the residents of the city by improving the local environment and improving access to community resources and services,” Morck said.

Visit tinyurl.com/yxudsz4s for more information on the redevelopment of brownfields properties throughout Wilson.