Industry Canada

Industry Canada
Gouvernement of Canada

October 12, 2007 10:41 ET

Canada's New Government Taking Action to Clean Up Brantford's Brownfields

BRANTFORD, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Oct. 12, 2007) - The Honourable John Baird, Minister of the Environment, on behalf of the Honourable Jim Prentice, Minister of Industry, today announced that Canada's New Government is providing $12 million to clean up a brownfield site in Brantford.

"Our government is following through on its promise to assist Brantford with cleaning up and redeveloping its brownfields," said Minister Baird. "For many years, the citizens of Brantford have called for federal action to clean up this long-standing environmental problem, and this government has heard their call."

Brownfields are abandoned or underused land, often in urban areas, that formerly housed industrial or commercial facilities. They are often environmental hazards to the community. The City of Brantford will use the federal funds to clean up its most critical brownfield site, Greenwich-Mohawk, which is located in the urban core and comprises three pieces of land totalling more than 50 acres.

"Protecting the environment and improving the health of Canadians is one of the fundamental long-term objectives of our government," said Minister Prentice. "This funding will help clean up the site in the heart of Brantford and transform the area into green space and residential and business communities."

The redevelopment of brownfield sites can have many positive benefits including improving environmental quality, health and safety; increasing tax revenues; helping create and retain employment opportunities; and revitalizing land and infrastructure in city cores.

Federal funding, along with the contributions from the Government of Ontario, will help the City of Brantford overcome the financial challenges of early-stage remediation. It also demonstrates the Government of Canada's commitment to building stronger and healthier communities and working cooperatively with other levels of government.

BACKGROUNDER

Brantford Brownfields

The Government of Canada is providing $12 million to support the clean up and redevelopment of a brownfield site in Brantford, Ontario. Brownfields are abandoned or underused land, often in urban areas, that formerly housed industrial or commercial facilities. Redevelopment of brownfield land is often complicated by environmental concerns and by liability or financing issues related to toxic contamination. A key component of redevelopment is remediation, which means corrective action to clean up an environmentally contaminated site.

The City of Brantford will use the funds for the environmental cleanup of its most critical brownfield site, Greenwich-Mohawk, which is located in the urban core and comprises three pieces of land totalling more than 50 acres. Once revitalized, this parcel of land will be redeveloped according to a community design developed in consultation with Brantford residents. This brownfield is expected to be turned into a residential area, with some light commercial and heritage components.

Funding will begin at the start of the next fiscal year (2008-09).

The remediation of old industrial sites is an essential element in urban revitalization. With the right incentives and partnerships, and the removal of barriers to development, brownfields can generate significant public benefits. These include increased economic activity, increased tax revenues, lower municipal infrastructure costs, reduced health and safety risks, preservation of outlying agricultural land through reduction in urban sprawl, improved air quality, and improved quality of life in neighbourhoods. Public investment in brownfield redevelopment can also leverage a significant amount of private investment.

This project demonstrates the government's support for building cleaner, healthier and safer communities. It also supports the government's objective of balancing environmental protection with economic development in Canadian communities.

Contact Information

  • Office of the Honourable Jim Prentice
    Minister of Industry
    Deirdra McCracken
    Press Secretary
    613-995-9001
    or
    Industry Canada
    Media Relations
    613-943-2502