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HUD Archives: News Releases

HUD No. 99-143
Further Information:For Release
In the Washington, DC area: 202/708-0685Monday
Or contact your local HUD officeAugust 9, 1999


WASHINGTON - Housing and Urban Development Secretary Andrew Cuomo today announced $6.75 million in assistance for Miami-Dade County, Florida, for brownfield redevelopment. The project will create an estimated 200 jobs.

Miami-Dade County will receive a $1.75 million Brownfields Economic Development Initiative grant and $5 million in loan guarantees. The county will create a revolving loan fund that will provide: critical funding for the redevelopment of brownfields in distressed neighborhoods; financial incentives for cleanup; attract investors to neighborhood revitalization projects; and encourage community participation in brownfields redevelopment efforts. This funding will be used for site assessment, remediation and economic redevelopment of brownfield sites.

"One of the most important challenges facing cities today is cleaning up and revitalizing abandoned industrial and commercial sites that were the engines of America's economic greatness in our past," Cuomo said. "Working in partnership with communities, we can transform these areas into generators of new jobs and new prosperity in our future."

Cuomo made the announcement today in a telephone conference call with Congresswoman Carrie Meek, Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, Congressman E. Clay Shaw, Jr. and Miami-Dade County Mayor Alex Penelas.

Congresswoman Meek said: "This is a small but important step toward improving our inner city neighborhoods. We can't keep building and building further and further west; if we do we will adversely affect quality of life for everyone in South Florida. We need this grant for the new revolving loan fund to make maximum use of existing development sites and also to bring new businesses, homes, and jobs into inner-city neighborhoods that really need them."

Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen said: "We are all thrilled that our communities will receive this much needed economic boost to help stimulate commerce in areas that will benefit greatly from the incoming economic activity. It is because of our strong federal, state, and local partnerships that we were able to accomplish this worthy goal for our constituency. This proves that positive cooperation between our communities and Washington can bring economic stimulus to our area."

Congressman Shaw: "With the awarding of this $1.75 million grant and the $5 million loan guarantee from the Department of Housing and Urban Development, Miami-Dade County will have the opportunity to create desperately needed affordable housing. These funds are a great beginning to economic revitalization in parts of the County by providing housing, assisting with brownfield cleanup and helping to attract investors to these projects."

Miami-Dade County will contribute $300,000 in Community Development Block Grant funds. Key participants include: Miami-Dade County's Office of Community and Economic Development, the Miami-Dade County Department of Environment Resources Management, Eastward Ho! Regional Brownfields Partnership, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Brownfield sites include abandoned factories and other industrial facilities, gasoline stations, oil storage facilities, dry cleaning stores, and other businesses that dealt with polluting substances. Since 1993, the Clinton Administration has taken a series of actions to clean up and redevelop brownfields and return them to productive use, including: providing seed money to communities for revitalization; removing regulatory barriers to redevelopment; and providing a targeted tax incentive to businesses that purchase and clean up the sites.

The loan guarantees, also known as the Section 108 Program, provide communities with a source of financing for job creation, housing rehabilitation, and construction of public facilities and large-scale development projects.

Vice President Gore announced the Clinton Administration's Brownfields National Partnership in 1997 to bring together resources of over 20 federal agencies to address brownfield cleanup and redevelopment issues in a coordinated approach. HUD works with other federal agencies to provide communities with financial and technical assistance to revitalize brownfields.

Cuomo accompanied President Clinton last month on the President's New Markets Tour of economically distressed communities that highlighted the economic potential for investment in underserved markets. The President is proposing tax incentives and investment tools that will make it more attractive for corporate America to search for opportunities in such communities.

A recent HUD report titled New Markets: The Untapped Retail Buying Power In America's Inner Cities showed that America's inner city neighborhoods - with $331 billion in annual retail purchasing power - hold major economic potential for retail business growth. The report found:

  • Inner city neighborhoods possess enormous retail purchasing power - estimated at $331 billion last year, or one-third of the $1.1 trillion total for the central cities in which those neighborhoods are located. The report suggests that businesses not yet operating in inner cities should not ignore that large domestic market.
  • Despite their huge buying power, many inner city communities are "under-retailed," with sales that fall significantly short of residents' retail purchasing power. The report makes clear that there is a large inner city consumer market worth competing for.

Content Archived: January 20, 2009

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