United States
                         Protection Agency
                         Washington, D.C.  20460
                            Solid Waste
                            and Emergency
                        EPA 500-F-00-222
                        October 2000
  oEPA        Brownfields   Showcase
                         Milwaukee,  Wl
 Outreach and Special Projects Staff (5105)
                                                Quick Reference Fact Sheet
 Brownfields are abandoned, idled or underused industrial and commercial properties where expansion or redevelopment is
 complicated by real or perceived contamination. In May 1997, Vice President Gore announced a Brownfields National Partnership
 to bring together the resources of more than 15 federal agencies to address local cleanup and reuse issues in a more coordinated
 manner. In 1998, this multi-agency partnership designated 16 "Brownfields Showcase Communities"—models demonstrating
 the benefits of collaborative activity on brownfields. In October 2000, the partnership selected 12 additional "Brownfields
 Showcase Communities" to continue the success of the initiative. The Brownfields Showcase Communities are distributed
 across the country and vary by size, resources, and community type. A wide range of support will be leveraged, depending on
 the particular needs of each Showcase Community.

The Brownfields National Partnership has selected
Milwaukee, Wisconsin as a Brownfields Showcase
Community. The city is focusing its brownfields
efforts on mothballed properties in the Menomonee
Valley, located in the heart of the city and adjacent to
the region's largest pockets of unemployment.  The
area has been designated a Federal Enterprise
Community. According to 1990 Census data, 39
percent of area residents live below the poverty line
and median income is less than half the  state's
The mothballing
Community Profile
issue is a growing
concern for commu-
nity redevelopment,
as cities find key
properties blocked
from reuse. The State
of Wisconsin's new
"cost recovery"
statute adopted in
early 2000 gives the
city bargaining power
in negotiations with owners of mothballed properties
and is expected to remove many of the barriers to
redeveloping these sites. Milwaukee has begun to use
this authority to cleanup and redevelop private sites.
The city is making progress through engaging
community organizations and forming partnerships
with federal, state, and local agencies.


In 1998, Milwaukee identified 68 vacant or
underutilized parcels located in the Menomonee
Valley that had suspected environmental contamina-
tion. Based on a market analysis, approximately 200
                        acres were identified as
                        priority areas. The city is
                        targeting six properties
                        located in these areas.  In
                        recent years, Milwaukee
                        has undertaken the
                        following activities
                        throughout the city:
 Milwaukee, Wisconsin
The City of Milwaukee is targeting the
cleanup and redevelopment of
"mothballed" brownfields. Mothballed
properties are privately owned and
deliberately idled due to environmental
concerns. Wisconsin's innovative "cost
recovery" statute, adopted in early 2000;
gives the city new bargaining  power in
negotiations with owners of these
properties and is being looked to as a
potential model for other communities.
                        • Helped to fund
                        environmental testing
                        and/or cleanups as part
                        of the successful
 redevelopment of 44 projects.  These efforts led
 to a variety of new uses that created or retained
 1,604 jobs and leveraged more than $199 million

  in private investment. Forty of these projects
  are private developments.

• Completed Phase I and Phase II environmental
  assessments on 13 properties in the Menomonee

• Developed a "public conversations" process to
  obtain input from local health groups,
  environmental organizations, neighborhood
  associations, business groups, property owners,
  and developers on the city's brownfields
  cleanup and redevelopment activities.

Milwaukee has formed partnerships with federal,
state, and local entities to address brownfields
issues.  Partnerships include:

• EPA, which awarded Milwaukee a Brownfields
  Assessment Demonstration Pilot with a
  supplemental award, a Job Training Pilot, an
  Alternative Dispute Resolution Pilot, and a
  Sustainable Development Challenge Grant;

• U.S. Department of Housing and Urban
  Development, which designated Milwaukee as a
  Federal Enterprise Community;
  State agencies, including the Wisconsin
  Department of Natural Resources and the
  Wisconsin Department of Commerce; and

  Community groups, including the 16th Street
  Community Health Center, Valley Park Civic
  Association, and Merrill Park Neighborhood

Milwaukee plans to use the Showcase Community
project to conduct site investigations on prioritized
mothballed properties once the city obtains an access
agreement. Using the state's new cost recovery law,
the city will continue efforts to take ownership of
private properties for brownfields cleanup and
redevelopment.  Milwaukee is also developing an
area-wide approach to groundwater management in
the Menomonee Valley that will complement the
city's brownfields strategy.

Milwaukee's innovative approach to addressing
mothballed properties will serve as a national model
for other cities facing the challenges of bringing  these
properties into productive reuse.

                          Milwaukee Economic Development
    U.S. EPA-Region 5
                               For more information on the Brownfields Showcase
                              Communities, visit the EPA Brownfields Web site at:
Brownfields Showcase Communities
October 2000
                             Milwaukee, Wisconsin
                                EPA 500-F-00-222