Waterloo Iowa Empowers Citizens with Brownfield Project Website with Help from HR Green, Increasing Transparency for Ongoing Projects
A brownfields project website geared towards informing citizens of the City of Waterloo, Iowa has been instrumental in empowering them to fully understand the history of environmental investigations completed in their respective neighborhood. This dynamic outreach tool also provides an overview of the project, highlights success stories, cites leveraged sources, and includes up-to-date news items. A new interactive map accessible on the homepage allows users to track the status of targeted properties, review photographs, obtain parcel-specific data, and download reports.
“The City of Waterloo is proud and excited to have launched a new feature within The New Waterloo Brownfield Website (www.thenewwaterloo.com), that provides environmental assessment data for various sites throughout the Waterloo area to assist in future redevelopment of industrial or commercial sites that are idle or underused because of real or perceived environmental pollution.” said Chris Western, Planner II/Brownfield Coordinator, City of Waterloo.
For nearly two decades, HR Green, Inc. (HR Green) has been working with the City to help them transition numerous blighted properties, plagued by contamination issues, into assets that have helped expand the local tax base, create jobs, stabilize declining neighborhoods, and protect human health and the environment.
Since 2000, HR Green has successfully written and secured 14 individual US EPA Brownfields Grants totaling $2.65 million on behalf of the City of Waterloo. Brownfields are properties that have a potential presence of a hazardous substance, pollutant, or contaminant which could complicate any expansion, redevelopment, or reuse. Common examples include former gas stations, dry cleaners, manufacturing operations, and warehouses.
In addition, over $70 million has been leveraged in additional private and public funds to facilitate the transformation of these formerly impaired sites.
The City recently placed special emphasis on communicating with citizens and solicited the help from HR Green in upgrading its project website to enhance transparency and showcase the progressive development taking place in the community. HR Green has maintained the City’s brownfields website since 2007 and recently the City contracted HR Green to implement their most recent Assessment Grant awards in 2017.
“The City of Waterloo is appreciative of the past partnership we have had with HR Green to work to achieve great new redevelopment projects on perceived brownfield sites. We are continuing that relationship with them currently, and the success of bringing new projects, interests, and investments in Waterloo also continues.” said Noel Anderson, Community Planning & Development Director, City of Waterloo, IA.