Brownfield Redevelopment

 
Since 2001, the City of St. Louis has been at the forefront of Brownfield redevelopment in Mid-Michigan. St. Louis sees the advantages of this program as it restores property for use and increases property value, increases the local tax base, saves cost for development by using existing infrastructure/utilities, helps with public health and safety concerns and improves the image of the community.

A Brownfield is vacant or underused commercial or industrial property where environmental, economic and social obstacles hinder use and redevelopment. Because of their location, these properties often have excellent potential for redevelopment.

With the help of a County-wide Brownfield Redevelopment Authority administered by Greater Gratiot Development, St. Louis has completed two Brownfield Redevelopment projects that have added tremendously to the downtown.

In addition, St. Louis has received two EPA BRA grants totaling $350,000 for the purpose of identifying, testing and characterizing potential Brownfield sites for redevelopment. St. Louis now has a complete inventory of sites that qualify for Brownfield projects which can be very attractive to developers. Phase I and Phase II assessments continue to be done with grant funds which saves potential developers costs they would otherwise need to incur.

A Brownfield Task Force Committee is also in place to administer the current assessment grant and to make recommendations to City Council about future projects. The committee is made up of Greater Gratiot President Don Schurr, St. Louis Brownfield Coordinator Mari Anne Layman, Mayor George Kubin and community volunteers Melissa Allen, Bernie Bessert, Harold McClintic and Julie Brush. The Task Force works with environmental consultants from AKT Peerless Environmental and meets on a monthly basis on the 3rd Monday at 4:00 pm. in City Hall Council Chambers. The current EPA grant in effect is for assessment of petroleum-based contaminated properties and runs through September 30, 2007.

In 2003 a project was completed that involved the demolition of a former gas station as well as a rundown home on an adjacent lot. Environmental remediation was completed on the site and the new St. Louis Hydro-Spray Car Wash was built on the corner of Main Street and M-46 at a key intersection near the downtown. Total investment for the project was in excess of $750,000.

2005 saw a similar project take place at the intersection of M-46, North Mill Street and Michigan Avenue where another former gas station was demolished and environmental cleanup took place. The new Discount Muffler and Brakes shop opened in October, 2005 and added approximately 7-10 new jobs to downtown as well as over a $250,000 in private investment.

 
EPA Home Page
 
 

320 South Main Street Demolition

 
In November of 2006 the City of St. Louis demolished a condemned property at 320 South Main Street, the former Rowley & Church site.  The project cost in excess of $39,000.00 and was funded by the City's EPA Brownfield Grant.  This work helped the property to be suitable for future development.
 
 

Car Wash Construction

 
 

Discount Muffler and Brakes Construction

 
 

Corner of North Mill & Center Streets - Tank Removal

 
A former gas station site was cleaned up in October as the City purchased the property on the northeast corner of North Mill and Center Streets and had old fuel tanks removed and soil replaced with clean fill.  Plans are to turn the corner into a small "pocket part" to make an aesthetic improvement to the downtown as well as providing shoppers a place to sit and relax.
 
 

Contact Information

 

For more information about potential Brownfield sites in St. Louis available for redevelopment, contact:

 

Kurt Giles
City Manager
300 North Mill Street
St. Louis, MI 48880
(989) 681-4377 
 
              or
 

Philip Hansen

DDA/Economic Development Director
300 North Mill Street
St. Louis, MI 48880
(989) 681-3017
 
   
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