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What is a brownfield?

A brownfield site is any real property where a contaminant is present at levels exceeding the soil cleanup objectives or other health-based or environmental standards, criteria or guidance adopted by New York State Department of Environmental Conservation"

Brownfields revitalization is critical to the future of Niagara County. Remediating contaminated sites and making them productive again results in job creation and a healthier environment.  Niagara County is concentrating on brownfields redevelopment as a key strategy for economic regeneration and environmental revitalization. 


Why are  brownfields important? 

Brownfields are often abandoned sites that can create safety and health risks to surrounding residents, increase unemployment, and are frequently tax delinquent. Because lenders, investors, and developers sometimes fear liability for cleaning up the contamination they did not create, they are attracted to development on farm fields and clean properties.


Reinvesting in brownfields protects the environment, reduces blight, increases the tax base, creates new jobs and reuses existing infrastructure.


The most common brownfield sites include:

  • Closed motor vehicle repair shops

  • Former dry-cleaning sites

  • Vacant industrial facilities

  • Closed gas stations

  • Abandoned factories

Brownie's Sunoco - 2005 - pic 1.JPG

A brownfield site is not: 

  • Active facilities of any kind, even if contamination is suspected

  • Residential buildings with hazardous building materials 

  • Superfund (NPL) sites

  • Sites under Federal jurisdiction (DoD, DoE, etc.)

A Quick Look at the

Brownfield Process

Remediation August 2013 014.jpg
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