BIDDEFORD — The Environmental Protection Agency on Wednesday announced grants totaling more than $4 million to clean up contaminated industrial sites across New England.

The $4.3 million in supplemental funds will go to a variety of so-called “brownfield” sites across the region, including $1.2 million for cleanup and redevelopment projects in Maine.

“The EPA’s brownfields program here in New England has a long history of helping to boost local economies, creating well-paying local jobs, all while protecting people’s health and our communities,” said Curt Spalding, regional administrator of the EPA New England office.

The supplemental funds announced Wednesday are part of $13.2 million nationally that the EPA made available under its brownfields revolving loan fund.

Also on Wednesday, Spaulding presented more than $2.35 million in brownfields funding to six communities and groups in Maine for assessment and cleanup of contaminated sites. Those funds were part of a round of grants announced in May.

Spalding announced the new round of funding at a news conference at Biddeford City Hall, where federal, state and local officials also highlighted the role brownfield grants have played in cleaning up contaminated industrial mill properties and revitalizing Biddeford’s downtown.


“If you want to see what this program can do, come to Biddeford,” Spalding said.

Biddeford has received more than $200,000 for assessments and $2.6 million in loans and grants for cleanup in the downtown area, where former textile mills are being redeveloped for mixed use. Private developers have invested close to $70 million in the area since the city bought and cleaned up the site of the former Maine Energy Recovery Co. trash incinerator.

Paul Schumacher, executive director of the southern Maine Planning and Development Commission, said most of the $500,000 his group received Wednesday will go toward completing the cleanup of the former Lincoln Mill in Biddeford. Developer Tim Harrington is currently transforming that building into a $50 million hotel, apartment and restaurant complex.

Schumacher said the money previously invested in cleanup in downtown Biddeford has brought new energy to the city.

“It changed the face of the community,” he said. “It’s an amazing transformation.”

The Maine Department of Economic and Community Development received $700,000 from the supplemental funds announced Wednesday.


The EPA brownfields funding for 2015 will go to:

• Androscoggin Valley Council of Governments: $400,000 for communitywide assessment grants.

• Town of Berwick: $600,000 in clean up grants for the Prime Tanning property.

• Town of Lubec: $400,000 in cleanup grants for the Columbian factory site.

• Penobscot Indian Nation: $200,000 communitywide assessment grant.

• Portland Harbor Commission: $350,000 assessment grant for Portland Harbor.

• City of Rockland: $400,000 for communitywide assessment grants.

“We are pleased that the EPA has once again selected several sites in Maine to receive federal funding through the brownfields program,” U.S. Sens. Susan Collins and Angus King said in a joint statement. “These grants represent a continued and welcome investment in the economic revitalization of Maine communities that will also help protect the integrity of the environment for future generations.”

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