ECONOMIC & COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT
improving the community
Economic & Community Development
200 Cherry St, Suite 300
Macon, GA 31201
P: (478) 751-7190
P: (478) 751-7192
F: (478) 751-7390
The Downtown Industrial District (DID) was one of the earliest job centers in Macon, including the Central Georgia Railroad and Southern Railroad, extensive manufacturing plants, cotton, brick and paper mills, etc. It is included within the National Registry of Historic places. Today a conglomeration of office, commercial, public/institutional, and residential structures remain in the district, along with a significant portion of unused land redevelopment. The eventual revitalization of this historic industrial district is known as the City of Macon’s Brownfields Revitalization Project.
The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) defines Brownfields as abandoned, idled, or under-used industrial and commercial facilities where expansion or redevelopment is complicated by real or perceived environmental contamination. Some vacant sites within Macon’s DID are known to be contaminated. Many others are perceived to be. Before these areas can be redeveloped for new shops, restaurants, businesses, education centers, stadiums, recreation centers, ball fields, tourist sites, parks, or any other revitalization that may be envisioned, official EPA-approved contamination assessment, cleanup, community involvement, planning and implementation of land use must be done.
The City of Macon has been awarded a $200,000 grant from the Environmental Protection Agency to begin its revitalization of the Downtown Industrial District under EPA’s Brownfields Initiative. Its mission states that it will empower states, communities, and other stakeholders in economic development to work together in a timely manner to prevent, assess, safely clean up, and sustainably reuse Brownfields sites.
The grant will allow the City to establish a contamination assessment and redevelopment feasibility pilot as an example for ongoing revitalization of the Brownfields sites in the DID. Five sites have been identified for contamination assessment and feasibility studies are to be funded with the EPA grant.
The first aspect of this project is to gain key input from the community “stakeholders” or general public which will help implement and be impacted by the redevelopment of the Brownfields sites. City residents, churches, community organizations, business owners, property owners, bankers, developers, and community leaders are all stakeholders.
An Advisory Committee is assisting the City in building the Revitalization Project, beginning with the establishment of five pilot assessment sites. The Committee holds monthly meetings and is helping to carry out the project. This includes utilizing the results of a feasibility study for redeveloping the proposed sites prior to the final step of contamination assessment, clean up and actual redevelopment as a new business site, recreational or public service facility, etc.
P: (478) 751-7170