By Michael Souza
PBN Staff Writer
WASHINGTON – Thanks to a grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Rhode Island will be receiving $1.2 million in federal funding to help clean up four brownfield sites across the state.
Four Rhode Island organizations – the Paul Cuffee School, R.I. Dept. of Environmental Management, the Blackstone Valley Community Action Program and Mosaico Business and Community Development Corporation – are among the 245 nationwide entities that received grant money.
The announcement was made by U.S. Senator Jack Reed, chairman of the Appropriations Subcommittee that oversees federal funding for all EPA programs.
“This federal funding will help local partners clean up our communities and revitalize these sites to restore them to productive use,” Reed, a democrat, said in prepared remarks.
A brownfield site is property where expansion or redevelopment is complicated by the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substance, such as an old industrial site or mill.
Paul Cuffee School will receive $400,000 for two brownfield cleanup grants to clean up and redevelop adjacent properties for a new parking lot and athletic field for students.
The former Living Room Nightclub site in Providence, where soil is contaminated with metals and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons co-mingled with petroleum, will be cleaned.
DEM will receive $400,000 to conduct two Phase I and two Phase II environmental site assessments.
The brownfields assessments will help the state and local communities plan for cleanups and conduct community outreach activities related to environmental contamination at sites and leverage resources for redevelopment.
Blackstone Valley Community Action Program will receive $200,000 to clean up hazardous substances at the former Laurel Hill Playground in Pawtucket.
Mosaico Business and Community Development Corporation will receive $200,000 to clean up the former Bristol Industrial Park. This site was used for rubber and other heavy manufacturing uses for over 100 years.