Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza today announced that the City of Providence has been selected to receive a $200,000 grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency as part of the Brownfields Area-Wide Planning (AWP) program. The City will use grant funds to develop a vision, market study, and an area-wide plan for redeveloping contaminated brownfield sites along the Woonasquatucket River, just west of downtown Providence.
“I’m excited that Providence has been selected for this opportunity that will allow us to continue to revitalize such a historic section of the city,” said Mayor Elorza. “The redevelopment of this area will expand economic development opportunities, create jobs, and further strengthen the corridor’s role as the industrial center of activity for the City.”
Providence was selected as 1 of 19 communities to receive approximately $3.8 million in total funding to assist with community revitalization through the planning for cleanup and reuse of Brownfield sites. The City has a long history of coordination with the U.S Environmental Protection Agency focusing on the redevelopment of contaminated industrial sites in the Valley and Olneyville neighborhoods along the once heavily contaminated banks of the Woonasquatucket River.
Over the past two years, Mayor Elorza has renewed efforts to build upon the private sector investments being made in the Valley and Olneyville neighborhoods, most recently securing over $5 million dollars of State funds for the design and development of a biking and walking path along the river just west of downtown.
The City expects to begin to engage stakeholders and the public in the planning process in March and release a vision, market study, and an area-wide plan next winter.