Brownfields touted for redevelopment

This 2013 file photo shows the 52-acre former Union Tank Car site at 300 W. 151st St. in East Chicago, which was targeted for redevelopment through an EPA grant. The Northwest Indiana Forum plans to educate developers about how to redevelop such sites.

The Northwest Indiana Forum and the Northwestern Indiana Regional Planning Commission will host an educational panel discussion on brownfield redevelopment next week.

“This brownfield education agenda has been developed to provide information on new programs, regional success stories and creative solutions,” said Kay Nelson, Northwest Indiana Forum Environmental Affairs director. “We encourage Realtors, site selectors, brokers, municipal economic, redevelopment and planning staff to attend.”

The event will take place from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. Wednesday at the Northwest Indiana Forum/NIRPC Office on 6100 Southport Road in Portage. Networking begins at 8 a.m.

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The Region is rife with brownfields, or former industrial or commercial sites that have real or perceived environmental contamination, especially in heavily industrialized North Lake County. The NWI Forum thinks many have “significant redevelopment potential.”

NIRPC Chief of Staff Kathy Luther will offer updates on the Region’s brownfield assessment grant and revolving loan fund. Presenters also will discuss “maximizing liability protection on properties, leveraging assessment funds in brownfield redevelopment projects, historic insurance on current problems, marketing brownfield sites and the BUILD Act,” according to a news release.

To attend the free event, register with Kay Nelson by emailing knelson@nwiforum.org or by calling 219-763-6303, ext. 186.


Business Reporter

Joseph S. Pete is a Lisagor Award-winning business reporter who covers steel, industry, unions, the ports, retail, banking and more. The Indiana University grad has been with The Times since 2013 and blogs about craft beer, culture and the military.