What are some of the projects the BRA is currently (2015) working on? What about past projects?
1. The South Washington Area Redevelopment is the largest Brownfield redevelopment project we have in Manistee at this time. It involves the rehabilitation of the unfinished River Parc condos, the North Channel Outlet building, and several vacant properties around the two buildings. Both buildings are vacant and blighted, and all properties are contaminated. In addition to the environmental remediation and removal of asbestos and lead paint that is needed, new and upgraded public utilities around the buildings will be constructed to support the increased residential density. Once completed, the entire property will have numerous condominiums, apartments, retail spaces, boat slips, more parking and open spaces. We did all environmental studies using previous EPA grants. The BRA and City are now applying for grants from the State of Michigan for some of the restoration work. Also, the Brownfield TIF that will be generated from taxes paid by the future owners will be used to reimburse remediation, abatement and public improvement expenses. The BRA, the City, the DDA and the private developers are working closely on this $7,500,000 project.

2. The BlueFish restaurant is an example of redevelopment support provided by the BRA in collaboration with the City and DDA for the recruitment and startup of the restaurant. The property is a Brownfield because of the presence of contamination and the historic nature of the building. Therefore it qualified for use of Federal funds for the environmental due diligence done by the BRA on behalf of the new owners.

3. The former Golden Apple building on 334 River Street was the recipient of a Brownfield redevelopment grant awarded to the BRA by the MDEQ to clean up contaminated soils under the building, remove old automotive service equipment, replace oil stained floors and demolish a portion of the building. In addition to managing the grant work, the BRA also helped the new owner to secure a Brownfield tax credit, and created a Brownfield TIF plan to reimburse some of the owner’s redevelopment expenses.

4. The BRA used funding from two Federal grants to study the environmental issues at the Iron Works property to determine the extent and costs of the remediation needed to redevelop the property. As recently as 2013, the BRA also completed asbestos and lead paint surveys as part of the preparation for the opening of the Iron Works Café.

5. Since 2008, the BRA has facilitated the redevelopment of sections of the former General Chemical property, initially for the development of the Rieth Riley bulk material and asphalt storage facility. The BRA secured a large grant and loan from the MDEQ for the remediation of the contamination at the site, and for the preparation of the property for the bulk material storage facilities and the docking of the freighters. A Brownfield TIF plan and a Renaissance tax abatement plan were also created to defray some of the substantial private costs. The BRA will now be working with the new owners of the northern portion of the General Chemical site as they are planning its redevelopment.

6. On behalf of the City of Manistee Housing Commission, the BRA managed the demolition of the blighted buildings at the former Manistee Plating property on 6th Avenue and the remediation of this contaminated property. Through a grant we received from the State of Michigan, the BRA procured a local contractor to demolish the blighted buildings that contained asbestos and lead paint, remove the contaminated soils and other material, and prepare the property for future redevelopment by the Housing Commission.

7. With several grants from the US Environmental Protection Agency, the BRA has conducted environmental assessments and remediation plans at more than 30 properties all over the City, to assist developers and new owners in dealing with the environmental challenges at their properties. Examples of these properties are the Bookmart, the Hokanson buildings, and the former Chippewa Hotel lot on River Street, the Hotel Northern and North Channel buildings on Washington Street, the former General Chemical (it is now Rieth Riley) and the Van’s Auto properties on State Street, the Rodeway Inn and the former Joslyn sites on US-31, and the Century Terrace and Harborview properties on 6th Avenue, among others.

Show All Answers

1. What is the Brownfield Redevelopment Authority?
2. How many members are on the Brownfield Redevelopment Authority? When and where does the BRA meet?
3. What is the role of the Brownfield Redevelopment Authority in the City of Manistee?
4. What are the goals of the BRA and how does it achieve them?
5. What are some of the redevelopment activities the BRA can assist with, and secure funding for on behalf of city and to the residents?
6. What is Brownfield Tax Increment Financing?
7. What are some of the projects the BRA is currently (2015) working on? What about past projects?
8. Are there any misconceptions about the BRA? If so, what are they?
9. How long it takes to process Brownfield projects.