Wednesday, May 22, 2024

BRF awarded grant for cleanup of hazardous materials site

by BIZ Magazine

BRF has received a $95,841 grant from the City of Shreveport’s Brownfields Revolving Loan Fund program to remediate hazardous materials from property located on Bell Street near Shreveport’s main post office.

The property was donated to BRF in 2020. BRF commissioned an environmental assessment of the site, secured a cost estimate for remediation, and collaborated with the City of Shreveport, Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality, and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to provide funding for the remediation project. The seven-acre site housed oil well drilling and production equipment. BRF has invested approx. $27,000 for surveys, as well as some cleanup and removal of material from the site.

BRF plans to incorporate the property into the City of Shreveport’s Ockley Basin watershed project to alleviate flooding in central Shreveport. The site will contribute to one of three planned floodwater retention areas in the basin that will hold and slowly release storm water to prevent flooding in the Shreveport Healthcare and Development Corridor and nearby neighborhoods.

BRF and the City of Shreveport collaborated for a $5.36 million grant from the Louisiana Watershed Initiative for the Ockley Basin project. Announced in May, the award to the City of Shreveport was one of 16 flood-mitigation projects funded around the state. The Ockley Basin project will help alleviate flooding that impacts homes, businesses and critical facilities like Ochsner LSU Health Shreveport, the LSU School of Medicine, Shriners Hospital for Children–Shreveport and the U.S. Post Office’s sorting facility.

The acquisition and cleanup of property and flood mitigation for the area are part of BRF’s effort to help advance the Shreveport Healthcare and Development Corridor, which encompasses Kings Highway from Interstate 49 to Interstate 20. In recent months, BRF has also demolished several buildings it had acquired on Kings Highway as part of its effort to begin improvements in the corridor.

BRF’s InterTech Science Park, an approx. 50-acre urban Brownfields, smart growth initiative, is a part of the corridor. BRF currently is constructing a $20 million facility to house its Center for Molecular Imaging and Therapy at Kings Highway and Mansfield Road. Another major construction project along the corridor is LSU Health Shreveport’s new Center for Medical Education.

“Driving along Kings Highway and seeing the advancements that have taken place in the past three years alone is very encouraging. The landscape of this area of Shreveport is changing. This corridor presents great opportunity for economic development and supporting industry around Northwest Louisiana’s biosciences, a crucial sector of our region’s economy,” said John F. George Jr., M.D., BRF President and CEO.

To date, BRF has received five national EPA Brownfields Cleanup awards totaling over $1 million which has been dedicated to redeveloping areas in the corridor and the InterTech Science Park.

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