We also expect that the work we do with this initiative will pave the way for more initiatives of this kind in the Western U.S.
TEMPE, AZ (PRWEB) March 17, 2015
Professional infrastructure and environmental services consultancy Cardno has organized a unique collaboration of federal, state, city, and nonprofit organizations called the Arizona Healthfields Initiative, one of only a few similar efforts anywhere in the U.S and a first-of-its-kind program in Arizona. The stated goal of the initiative is the redevelopment of abandoned, underutilized, and contaminated properties, also known as “brownfields,” for improvement of community health by establishing health clinics, community gardens, open and green spaces, farmers markets, and other projects that promote health, also known as “healthfields.” The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) currently supports using brownfield funds to further healthfields programs such as this one.
This program will empower long suffering Arizona communities struggling daily with the adverse effects of slum and blight due to abandoned, underutilized, and contaminated properties and limited funds. These conditions, a legacy of undesirable and unsustainable land use, zoning, and development practices of the past, have severely damaged and impeded the economic vitality and quality of life in many cities and towns for up to half a century or more. The Arizona Healthfields Initiative will give citizens and local government the tools necessary to redevelop and transform their brownfields in ways that enhance community health by providing free technical expertise, access to government grants and low interest loans, and training to enhance local know-how and capabilities.
This innovative initiative will be one of the topics featured at the EPA’s Brownfields 101 Workshop, Resources and Case Studies for Redeveloping Brownfields, on April 22, 2015 in Phoenix, Arizona. It has also been accepted by the Agency for Toxic Substances Disease Registry (ATSDR) as one of five community partnerships across the U.S. to provide opportunities for communities in Arizona to receive free technical assistance for redevelopment of brownfields. The services Cardno will provide in Arizona to further the goals of the initiative include community brownfield inventories, sampling and assessment of brownfield properties and buildings, and potential redevelopment options for specific brownfield properties owned by a community.
Cardno is an industry leader in obtaining and managing EPA Brownfields Grants, and through the Arizona Healthfields Initiative recently assisted the city of Phoenix’s Office of Environmental Programs in preparation of a $400,000 Community Wide Assessment Grant application to the EPA. The grant is designed to facilitate improved utilization of city owned vacant land and the redevelopment of brownfields properties in seven inner city target redevelopment and/or improvement areas. These are areas with health disparities relative to other areas of Phoenix such as a lack of access to fresh food, low income, high unemployment, and poor health.
Dave Laney, CHMM, who leads the Arizona Healthfields Initiative for Cardno stated, “Local folks have the desire, the vision, and the dedication to make their communities more sustainable and healthier places to work and live both for themselves and for future generations. They just need some assistance and encouragement to get started. We also expect that the work we do with this initiative will pave the way for more initiatives of this kind in the Western U.S., and will further recognition of Cardno as a national industry leader in healthfields redevelopment. It will also help us realize our goal of improving the health of the communities we serve.”
Cardno is an ASX200 professional infrastructure and environmental services company, with expertise in the development and improvement of physical and social infrastructure for communities around the world. Cardno’s team includes leading professionals who plan, design, manage and deliver sustainable projects and community programs.
Cardno is an international company listed on the Australian Securities Exchange [ASX:CDD]. http://www.cardno.com