1999 CPEO Brownfields List Archive

From: dborak@icma.org
Date: Wed, 7 Jul 1999 15:20:38 -0700 (PDT)
Reply: cpeo-brownfields
Subject: Re: Local Agency Capacity To Handle Brownfield Issues
In response to Emery's comment concerning the early involvement and
of various governmental units and tasks related to a brownfields
the International City/County Managment Association (ICMA) will soon be
releasing a report entitled Putting the Pieces Together: Local Government
Coordination of Brownfields Redevelopment.  

Local governments have historically controlled the fate of brownfields
redevelopment because of the ties to land use processes. But brownfields
redevelopment requires the expertise of multiple disciplines: environmental,
economic development, infrastructure, planning, financing, community
development, legal, and others - all of which must be coordinated at the local
level.  In addition, brownfield communities often face additional problems
as unemployment, poor quality housing, or an outdated public
infrastructure.  By
coordinating programs and resources, a brownfields redevelopment project can
grow to address other issues at a site aside from the redevelopment (e.g., an
environmental assessment and cleanup activities might be linked with workforce
and job development programs through the creation of permanent jobs after the

Coordination is, at heart, a management tool.  ICMA, as the association for
professional local government managers, has identified coordination as a
key to
successful brownfields redevelopment programs and projects.  To determine
methods of coordination were most successful, ICMA conducted a research
study of
the 227 EPA Brownfield Assessment Pilots and Brownfields Showcase
This research helped determine which stakeholders should be coordinated in a
brownfields redevelopment, and some of the best practices that eased this

While different brownfields programs and project involve a variety of
stakeholders Putting the Pieces Together identifies the roles that local
departments, the private sector, regional entities, state and federal
communities, and other may play in a brownfields redevelopment.  It is our
that individual cities may use this as a guide for determining who can aid in
the brownfields redevelopment process.  The report also identifies a number of
best practices that helped their local governments coordinate a brownfields
project or program.  These include the use of a brownfields coordinator, the
project team approach, environmental databases, early involvement of all
stakeholders, and education of local government departments.  

Putting the Pieces Together also highlights a number of case studies where
brownfield redevelopments were coordinated in unique ways. In Cowpens, South
Carolina, private consultants and team-based coordination were key for
coordinating brownfields in a small town. Escambia County, Florida used
committee-based coordination to integrate the community, the local
government, and the private sector.  The City of Cincinnati and Hamilton
County, Ohio used the Port Authority to coordinate on a regional level.
Finally, Philadephia, Pennsylvania used the expertise of local
government entities to coordinate brownfields redevelopment in a large city.

Putting the Pieces Together: Local Government Coordination of Brownfields
Redevelopment is currently being edited.  ICMA hopes to publish it by the
end of
July.  If you are interested in a copy, please contact me at (202) 962-3506 or

David Borak

David A. Borak
Project Manager, Economic Development
International City/County Management Association (ICMA)
777 North Capitol Street, NE; Suite 500
Washington, D.C. 20002-4201
Phone : 202-962-3506
Fax   : 202-962-3500

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