Posts Tagged ‘Patrick Kirby’

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.”

READ MORE

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).

-NRCCE-

Save the date: West Virginia Brownfields Assistance Centers to host annual conference Sept. 12-14 in Morgantown

Written by Andrew Stacy on . Posted in Blog, Events, News

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – The 2017 #WVBrownfields Conference, hosted by the West Virginia Brownfields Assistance Centers, will take place at the Erickson Alumni Center in Morgantown, W.Va. on Sept. 12-14.

The theme for this year’s conference is Ready, Set, Redevelop. Building on the success of last year’s inaugural Central Appalachian Regional Brownfields Summit, West Virginia will again host this regional event on Sept. 14.

The event kicks off on Sept. 12 with training for licensed remediation specialists, a grant writing workshop, and mobile workshops highlighting brownfields projects in Morgantown. The first full day of the conference, Sept. 13, will feature programming and sessions related to brownfield redevelopment in West Virginia. The second day, Sept. 14, will feature sessions covering regional brownfields topics impacting Central Appalachia.

This premier redevelopment event attracts over 250 stakeholders including economic development professionals, environmental professionals, real estate developers, lawyers, state and local officials, EPA and other federal officials, entrepreneurs, planners, bankers, investors, and community redevelopment professionals.

“Each year, our number of attendees has increased and this year should be no different,” said Patrick Kirby, director of the Northern West Virginia Brownfields Assistance Center at West Virginia University.

“As a new part of the conference, we will host a “Women in Brownfields” gathering and for the second year in a row we will have pre-conference workshops and host the Central Appalachian Regional Brownfields Summit. The opportunity to showcase the amazing work happening in West Virginia and other Central Appalachian states is something we take great pride in. The revitalization of brownfield properties is instrumental in our state and region’s future economic development.”

The conference is in its 12th year and has become a “can’t miss” event for the state’s redevelopment stakeholders. Last year, over 300 people registered for the event. The conference will feature exceptional educational programs covering all aspects of brownfields redevelopment including: deal structuring and financing, abandoned and dilapidated buildings, grant writing, media engagement, community action on brownfields, and much more.

More details including registration, sponsor and exhibitor information will be coming soon to www.wvbrownfields.org. Sign-up for our mailing list and get the latest updates straight to your inbox.

West Virginia Brownfields Conference champions honored

Written by The State Journal on . Posted in Media, News

Communities across the state were recognized for their efforts to repurpose old industrial properties at the 11th annual West Virginia Brownfields Conference, hosted by the West Virginia Brownfields Assistance Centers in Charleston recently.

Patrick Kirby, executive director of the Northern West Virginia Brownfields Assistance Center, said the awards “recognize individuals and communities who have made major contributions to the redevelopment of brownfields in West Virginia.” The term “brownfield” refers to property for which expansion, redevelopment, or reuse may be complicated by the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substance, pollutant or contaminant.

The Business Development Corporation of the Northern Panhandle was this year’s recipient of the West Virginia Brownfield Award in Economic Development, given to a project or community partner that has demonstrated excellence in economic development on one or more brownfield sites. The BDC has transformed formerly contaminated brownfields properties throughout the Northern Panhandle and has leveraged $69 million of private and public investment on brownfield redevelopment projects in Chester, Newell, Weirton, Wellsburg and Beech Bottom.

“After our initial acquisition of our first brownfield, the former Taylor, Smith and Taylor Pottery Factory in Chester, we saw more opportunities to repurpose overlooked abandoned properties for industrial and commercial uses,” said Mike Swartzmiller, Hancock County Commission president and BDC executive board member. “We see brownfields as the perfect chance to revitalize and reuse properties in northern panhandle communities. Today, brownfields in Brooke and Hancock counties are home to over two dozen businesses.”

Also on hand at the awards ceremony was George Heines, chairman of the Brick Yard Bend Revitalization Group in New Cumberland, who credited community members and other organizations with which the BDC has partnered in recent years on its various projects. Those partnerships, he said, have helped many of the local projects move forward, providing funding for planning, marketing and cleanup, as well as opportunities to invest in abandoned properties.

“The award is more a reflection of the work of the people behind the scenes — U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection, Northern Brownfields Assistance Center, Claude W. Benedum Foundation, elected officials and all the volunteers — who commit the time in our task force meetings to identify, acquire, clean up and develop these abandoned properties,” BDC Executive Director Pat Ford said, pointing out some of the BDC’s ongoing efforts are projects in Chester with the former Taylor, Smith and Taylor pottery, the former Brooke Glass in Wellsburg, the former Wheeling Corrugating site in Beech Bottom, the Three Springs Business Park in Weirton and a historic lodge and former high school football field in Weirton.

Earlier this year, the BDC’s brownfield redevelopment efforts were featured in a new U.S. EPA-sponsored video for other economic development groups to use as a reference, and in 2015, the BDC received an Environmental Award for Excellence from the WVDEP for land revitalization and stewardship.

The Community Engagement award was presented to Van Voorhis Landing Kayak Launch Project, located on the former Quality Glass property in Monongalia County. The award recognizes the efforts of the Mon River Trails Conservancy and the Morgantown Area Paddlers to collaborate with more than 20 stakeholder organizations as well as the Morgantown community “to bring the final vision for the former Quality Glass brownfield site to life.”

WVBAC said the community raised some $40,000 in three months from 15 organizations and businesses, three small grants, 16 donations from private citizens and a special drawing. In the process, many volunteers were recruited to support the upkeep of the Van Voorhis Landing Facility. The launch will increase access to the Mon River Rail-Trail and Upper Mon Water Trail; increase parking for trail users and boaters; improve the rail-trail and water trail overall experience; further promote recreational opportunities in the area and bring new outdoor recreation business opportunities to surrounding communities, including star City, Morgantown and Port Marion, Pennsylvania.

READ MORE