Brownfield Programs – Coming to NYC!

Have a site but are concerned about potential environmental cleanup? Thinking of purchasing some property for redevelopment but are worried about liability issues relating to contamination? Interested in grants to fund your Phase I and Phase II analyses?

If so, the City of New York has you in mind.

The recently created Mayor’s Office of Environmental Remediation (OER) has proposed two new City programs as part of their new brownfields initiative (with a third one on the way!).

The first program is the core of the City’s brownfields initiatives. It is called the Local Brownfield Cleanup Program. This program will be a voluntary cleanup program that will provide oversight for properties with light to moderate contamination. Some financial incentive will be provided, but the true benefit of the program is a City liability release. The strength of this liability release are currently being negotiated between the City and the State.

The proposed regulations for the Local Brownfield Cleanup Program can be found here.

The second program is a Clean Property Certification Program. This program would provide certification of remedial action at brownfield sites. A successful completion of the Local Brownfield Cleanup Program would automatically qualify a site for the Certification. A site can also receive the Certification through alternate cleanup programs.

The proposed regulations for the Clean Property Certification Program can be found here.

Both programs will be debated at a public hearing on October 19th – 110 William St., Room 4A/B.

Finally, a third program is promised for later this year. While the details of this program are not yet known, it is anticipated that this program will provide remedial investigation and pre-development design grants.

The City has recognized that many of the remaining development sites – especially along the waterfront and in the outer boroughs – have contamination issues. Providing financial incentives and liability release will go a long way to providing developers with the necessary comfort level to continue the ongoing redevelopment of our city.