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EPA Brownfields Program

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. On January 11, 2002, President George W. Bush signed into law the Small Business Liability Relief and Brownfields Revitalization Act. Under the Brownfields Law, EPA provides financial assistance to eligible applicants through four competitive grant programs: assessment grants, revolving loan fund grants, cleanup grants, and job training grants. Additionally, funding support is provided to state and tribal response programs through a separate mechanism.

Assessment Grants

$200,000 for hazardous substances
$200,000 for petroleum

EPA has selected the Bucks County Redevelopment Authority for two brownfields assessment grants. Hazardous substances grant funds will be used to conduct community outreach, update the county's brownfields site inventory, and perform a minimum of four Phase I and two Phase II environmental site assessments at priority sites, primarily in the county's six most distressed municipalities. Petroleum grant funds will be used to perform the same tasks at sites with potential petroleum contamination.

Community Description

The Bucks County Redevelopment Authority was selected to receive two brownfields assessment grants. Located north of Philadelphia along the Delaware River, Bucks County (population of 605, 379) has a long history of industrial and commercial activity. The county was home to great industrial giants, including U.S. Steel, Rohm & Haas, AE Stanley, and 3M. The communities around the county flourished thanks to the industries that grew around the river, taking advantage of the transportation benefits, proximity of water for industrial operations, and the convenience of using the river for waste disposal. As transportation and environmental laws changed, the location along the river no longer was advantageous. Many of the industrial and commercial operations closed or cut back, leaving behind deteriorated and vacant sites. The downturn in these industries has left the neighborhoods around the sites with the county's highest rates of unemployment, especially among skilled workers. The waterfront communities that are the primary focus of this project have a disproportionate number of large brownfields properties, many of which block access to the river. Once these properties are assessed and cleaned up, the Authority envisions their reuse for mixed commercial, office, residential and open space, all linked by pedestrian and bike paths. This revitalization is expected to make the river more accessible, and bring jobs, recreational opportunities, and quality housing to the underserved municipalities of the county.


For further information, including specific grant contacts, additional grant information, brownfields news and events, and publications and links, visit the EPA Brownfields Web site (http://www.epa.gov/brownfields).

EPA Region 3 Brownfields Team
EPA Region 3 Brownfields Web site (https://www.epa.gov/brownfields/brownfields-and-land-revitalization-delaware-maryland-pennsylvania-virginia-west)

Grant Recipient: Redevelopment Authority of the County of Bucks, PA
(215) 781-8711

The information presented in this fact sheet comes from the grant proposal; EPA cannot attest to the accuracy of this information. The cooperative agreement for the grant has not yet been negotiated. Therefore, activities described in this fact sheet are subject to change.

EPA 560-F-06-052
May 2006
United States
Protection Agency
Washington, D.C. 20460
Solid Waste
and Emergency
Response (5105T)

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