MCAmericas Realty, Inc. and the El Paso Downtown Management District (DMD) have been selected as grant recipients of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Brownfields Program. Each organization has been awarded $500,000 for assessment and clean-up efforts.
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 whose expansion, redevelopment, or reuse may be complicated by the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substance, pollutant, or contaminant. Since its inception in 1995, EPA’s Brownfields Program has worked to help states and communities around the country clean up and revitalize Brownfield sites. At MCAmericas Realty, Inc., a subsidiary of the MCA Foundation, the Brownfields Cleanup Grant will be used to remediate soils at the former Dickshire Distribution Property located at 203-309 Chelsea Street. The site is composed of two parcels, one of which previously housed a beer distribution facility with the other containing a 5,000-square-foot mixed-use building that is currently vacant. This grant was made possible through a previous partnership between MCAMericas Realty, Inc. and the DMD under a previous Brownfields grant managed by the DMD that provided environmental assessment work at the site.
“The MCA foundation is investing in a part of town that was overlooked and neglected for many years but has remarkably high potential as we intend to remediate and redevelop into an important component of our emerging medical campus. We are thrilled to receive this grant that will accelerate the remediation and development process, advancing the delivery of healthcare services and stimulating the biomedical industry in our region. We are greatly appreciative of the EPA for their guidance and partnership in this important process of remediation and ultimately beautification and elevation of our land and natural resources.” Emma Schwartz, MCA Foundation CEO, said. At the El Paso Downtown Management District, the Brownfields Assessment Grant will be used to inventory sites and conduct nine Phase I and six Phase II environmental site assessments within Downtown El Paso. Grant funds also will also be utilized to develop six reuse plans and support community engagement activities. The target area for this grant is the El Paso Downtown Management District, which contains over 100 possible brownfield sites following a long period of disinvestment. This is the DMD’s second Brownfields Assessment Grant. In 2020, a coalition led by the DMD was awarded a $600,000 assessment grant. The coalition included the City of El Paso and El Paso County. “Through our original Brownfields grant in 2020, we have demonstrated that these funds can be used to support development and reinvestment in our community while addressing various environmental concerns. This new grant is a testament to our success and will be key to fostering greater investment in Downtown El Paso. We are eager to bringing our work to Downtown property owners and future investors,” said Joe Gudenrath, DMD Executive Director.
This federal funding will support ongoing efforts to revitalize and remediate environmental issues within Downtown El Paso and the Medical Center of the Americas Campus, both key areas of economic development and growth within the El Paso Region. For further information, including specific grant information, visit the EPA Brownfields Website at http://www.epa.gov/brownfields.