WV Brownfields Assistance Centers Honor Leaders in Brownfield Redevelopment

Written by Carrie Staton on . Posted in News, Uncategorized

Leaders from across the state were recognized for their work in brownfield redevelopment earlier this month. The WV Brownfields Assistance Centers presented the 2017 WV Brownfield Awards to five projects, organizations, and individuals who have demonstrated strong commitments to redevelopment. Award categories included: Economic Development, Community Engagement, Environmental Impact, Local Leadership, and Brownfields Visionary. Economic Development: Jeffrey Lusk and the Hatfield McCoy Trails were honored for their work in McDowell County on the development of a new trailhead facility for the Pocahontas Trail System. This project will yield economic development success for the Trail Authority, the Town of Bramwell, Mercer County, and the adjacent private business, demonstrating that underground storage tank issues do not have to stop new economic development. Community Engagement: The Morgan County Recreational Complex in Berkeley Springs was honored for the project team’s commitment to creative and comprehensive community engagement.  Over the course of the project, they have worked closely with teachers, school officials, students, parents, and other networks of organizations to ensure that the reuse of the site met the community’s needs. Environmental Impact: The project team on the Trimodal Terminal Project in Follansbee were honored for their vision, risk taking, and perseverance in remediating over 400 acres of former Wheeling Pittsburgh Steel Corporation property. Project leads and property owners Jim Joseph and Scotty Ewusiak noted that the success of this project would have been impossible without the commitment of the full team, including the WVDEP, US EPA, and Lydia Work at Environmental Standards. The project was further supported by a loan from the Power of 32 Site Development Fund, managed by Callay Capital. Local Leadership: New Historic Thomas and the City of Thomas were recognized as the Local Leaders of the year for their work in revitalizing the city through the inventorying, assessing, remediating, and redeveloping brownfield sites. Through the exceptional collaboration between city officials and New Historic Thomas, the city has been awarded over half a million dollars in grants from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Brownfields Program and the Northern WV Brownfields Assistance Center and leveraged significant additional grant funds and private investment for revitalization/redevelopment. and Brownfields Visionary. Brownfields Visionary: Matt Ward, who has played a major role in the national and statewide brownfield movements since their beginnings over 20 years ago, received the Brownfields Visionary Award, which recognizes an exemplary individual or organization that has shown innovation and vision in the redevelopment of brownfields with major statewide impact. Mat has worked as a consultant to the US EPA Brownfields and Land Revitalization Office since 1997 and helped dozens of communities across the nation secure brownfield resources and implement revitalization strategies. “Brownfields redevelopment requires vision, persistence, and tenacity.  West Virginia is lucky to have individuals and organizations that have all three of those characteristics,” said Northern WV Brownfields Assistance Center Director Patrick Kirby.  “All of the 2017 Brownfield Award winners bring an additional ingredient to the mix – catalytic leadership that has changed the course of the communities they are working in.” Read more about the 2017 WV Brownfield Awards recipients.

Brownfields Conference Promotes Revitalization and Redevelopment

Written by Kathryn Ghion, Monongalia and Preston County Reporter/Weekend Anchor, WBOY on . Posted in Events, Media, News

The West Virginia Brownfields Assistance Centers are teaching revitalization and redevelopment at their annual conference.

The Centers brought together more than 300 people for the three day conference and Central Appalachian Regional Brownfields Summit on Thursday.

“As Morgantown and Monongalia County grow, there are a lot of sites that have been redeveloped,” said Patrick Kirby, Director of the Northern West Virginia Brownfields Assistance Center at West Virginia University. We wanted to take people downtown, show them some neat things that are happening that are really exciting right now, but some have had to take environmental cleanup.”

Brownfields are any site that would be redeveloped, but there is either real or perceived contamination. The West Virginia Brownfields Assistance Centers help to clean that up.

“There are big projects that we’ve all driven by that same site that looks to big to tackle,” said Kirby. “If they just do what they can in their community, they can reach out to us for assistance and they can tackle those problems.”

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Listen to NBAC Director Patrick Kirby Explain the BAD Buildings Program

Written by Andrew Stacy on . Posted in Media, News

Patrick Kirby, director of Northern West Virginia Brownfields Assistance Center, explains how WVU helps cities and counties in the state deal with BAD buildings – Blighted, Abandoned and Dilapidated structures that degrade the quality of life in our communities. Gary Bowden interviews Kirby as part of his WAJR radio broadcast. Go to the podcast here (starts at 27:38).

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Women in Brownfields Breakfast Announced

Written by Andrew Stacy on . Posted in Events, News

Women in Brownfields Logo.

The Women in Brownfields Breakfast provides an opportunity to bring women in all aspects of brownfield development – environmental, community development, and economic development, to name a few – together to find ways to support one another in professional development, as well as to encourage other women to enter the field. The program will feature a keynote address from Susan Kemnitzer, 2016 West Virginia Wonder Woman, and information on additional networking opportunities in the future. The event will be held in conjunction with the 2017 #WVBrownfields Conference at the WVU Erickson Alumni Center on September 14 from 7:30 AM – 9:30 am.

Have breakfast, network, and share your experiences with other women working in brownfield redevelopment as we look for new ways to work together, support one another, and encourage more women to tackle the challenging, but rewarding, work that we do.

Register now at this link. More information on the 2017 Brownfields Conference at this link.

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CONTACT: Andrew Stacy, West Virginia Water Research Institute
304-293-7085, astacy@mail.wvu.edu