The City of Waterloo Iowa Continues a 20 Year-Long EPA Grant Partnership with HR Green
As part of HR Green’s ongoing commitment to helping clients redevelop blighted properties, the City of Waterloo, Iowa has selected HR Green to help implement their FY 20 Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Brownfields Assessment Grant. These funds allow the City to inventory, prioritize, assess, and conduct cleanup planning on targeted sites within the Broadway Street Corridor and Urban Core.
EPA defines a brownfield as “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.” The agency estimates there are more than 450,000 brownfields in the U.S. Many communities find the lingering perception of contamination makes it difficult to redevelop these properties. Assessment activities provide redevelopment assistance to remove the stigma.
HR Green has successfully written and secured 16 individual EPA Brownfields grants totaling $2.95 million on behalf of Waterloo over the past 20 years. These efforts assisted in transitioning numerous blighted properties plagued by contamination issues into assets that expanded the local tax base, created jobs, stabilized declining neighborhoods, and protected human health and the environment. Examples include the former Wonder Bread factory (Single Speed Brewing), former Grand Hotel (Grand Crossings condominiums), former Construction Machinery Company (Public Works building), Standard Forwarding and Rath buildings (Human Services Campus), and downtown flood-damaged properties (Cedar Valley Sportsplex).
HR Green helps communities compete for assessment, cleanup, and multi-purpose grants to return these properties to productive reuse. Waterloo was only one of three communities in Iowa to receive a portion of the $65 million in funding from the EPA’s Brownfields Program. Since the initiative began, HR Green has helped various communities nationwide secure approximately $13.5 million in grants.