Fort Wayne, IN
EPA Brownfields Initiative
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.
Date of Announcement: May 1998
Profile: The Pilot targets a brownfields property in the Hanna-Creighton neighborhood, one of the most severely distressed neighborhoods in the state.
EPA has selected the City of Fort Wayne for a Brownfields Pilot. The Pilot targets the Bowser Pump Plant site within the Hanna-Creighton neighborhood (population 2,786), one of the most severely distressed areas in the state. The population in this neighborhood is 89% African American and suffers from a 45% poverty rate, 25% unemployment rate, and one of the highest crime rates in the city. The Hanna-Creighton neighborhood is located within a state-designated Urban Enterprise Zone.
The 12.5-acre Bowser site is an abandoned, tax-delinquent property with a history of industrial activities dating back 100 years. Bowser & Co., an oil pump manufacturer, went out of business in the 1950s, and subsequent owners abandoned the site in 1995. The site currently includes a former iron foundry and a transformer building, as well as machine shops, plating facilities, and a manufacturing complex. These past industrial uses negatively impact the Hanna-Creighton neighborhood today. Dilapidated housing and infrastructure with poor access to transportation corridors, coupled with potential environmental contamination from past industrial activities, combine to inhibit cleanup and redevelopment.
The city's brownfields program wants to ensure that investments in urban brownfields redevelopment are sustainable. The city intends to achieve this objective by building neighborhood capacity and initiating "smart growth" policies that encourage brownfields development and discourage urban sprawl. The city will use the Pilot to assess contamination at the Bowser site, and involve the community in cleanup and redevelopment planning. The state Department of Environmental Management will assist with assessment and future cleanup of this brownfields area. In addition, private and non-profit commitments have been secured. Pilot funds may also be used to assess other area brownfields.
Activities planned as part of this Pilot include:
- Conducting environmental assessments at the Bowser Pump Plant site;
- Informing and educating Hanna-Creighton neighborhood residents about the Pilot's plans to assess the site, and encouraging community involvement in subsequent cleanup and redevelopment; and
- Developing cleanup and redevelopment plans for the site that reflect neighborhood needs.
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 5 Brownfields Team
EPA Region 5 Brownfields Web site (http://www.epa.gov/R5Brownfields)
Grant Recipient: City of Fort Wayne, IN
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.