United States
Environmental Protection
i Agency

ECOLOGICAL REVITALIZATION OF
ABANDONED GAS STATIONS

EPA/600/R-22/123

Abandoned Gas Stations are
a common type of
brownfield:. If you have one
in your community, use this
checklist to bring more life
to the environment through
ecological revitalization.

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 Bill

Mil IH

WHY FOCUS ON

ABANDONED
GAS STATIONS?

There are 450,000

U.S. Brownfield sites

and approximately 50%
have leaking underground
storage tanks (USTs) at old
gas stations.

Many abandoned gas stations are

under 3 acres

in ideal locations for reuse as parks,
gardens, greenspaces, recreation,
residences, or commercial spaces.

Community health and the
environment can benefit when
petroleum contaminants at the
site, in the building, in

groundwater, and soils are
addressed, and exposures
prevented.


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HOW CAN YOUR ABANDONED

THE ENVIR

Review the below checklist points to determi

~ SOIL HEALTH & REMEDIATION

	What can help speed up the natural break down of petroleum?

	Soil amendments, as organic materials, can improve soils, reduce compaction and help
reduce the spread of petroleum contaminants. Add native plants to create habitat and
biodiversity.

	A healthy soil structure and soil amendments can balance pH, improve water holding
capacity and drainage, filter contaminants and cycle nutrients which promote plant growth
and biological diversity. Learn more about soil properties2, phytotechnologies3, and

Biorennediatioin4.

~ GREEN INFRASTRUCTURE AND STORMWATER

	How can expanding green space and unpaved areas near a site bring benefits?

	Adding and extending green areas with rain gardens, bioswales, green roofs and permeable
pavements aid stormwater management and provide other health benefits5 to the
community.

	Green design may also reduce construction costs and the need for salt in the winter. Read
more on green infrastructure 6.

~ ECOSYSTEM BENEFITS

	What natural features provide benefits and strengthen ecosystems?

	Planting trees, shrubs, grasses or flowers can reduce air pollution, assist temperature
regulation, buffer noise and provide habitat for pollinators, birds, and wildlife. Read more on

ecosystem benefits e7.

~ ACCESSING GREENER REUSE

	How do residents, workers or visitors access and enjoy natural features of the intended
reuse?

	Natural features can beautify and have environmental function that increase property
values. Consider how greenery can add commercial value and complement solar panels,
battery storage, EV charging and other forward-looking reuses.

5AS STATION REUSE IMPROVE
DNMENT?

e their applications within your site context.

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i M

V'

Trees and plants can extract, degrade, or
immobilize pollutants through Phytoremediation.



I1' ^


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RS Automotive
Tacoma, Maryland

RS Automotive is an electric vehicle (EV)
charging station opened in 2019 after the
owner closed the previous autoshop and
gas station,

	Underground storage tanks were
removed with plans to keep the
autoshop open.

	City and state grant funds revitalized the
shop into an EV charging station.

	Patrons visit nearby businesses while
their car charges for 15-30 minutes.

	Photo source: Mhari Shaw/ISIPR12

Big Daddy's Garden
Emeryville, California

Big Daddy's Complete Rejuvenating
Community Garden is named for the owner of
the gas station and autoshop that was once at
this site.

	Neighborhood residents led the creation of
the garden space.

	Volunteer work and a combination of city
and local donorfunding fueled the
construction.

	Bringing in raised garden beds and clean soil
is safe practice to ensure residual petroleum
contaminants are not taken up into the
garden products. Read more on what you
should Know Before You Grow8.

SeQuential Biofuels
Eugene, Oregon
SeQuential9 is a biofuels station and retail
store restored with green infrastructure in a
gas station brownfield redevelopment.

	Stormwater is filtered by the station's
vegetated roof, roadside rain gardens, and
a retention pond.

	Passive solar heat and lighting reduce
energy needs of the site.

	Local pollution from fuel is reduced by
offering bioethanol and biodiesel
produced from used cooking oil and
agricultural and industrial waste instead of
volatile oil compounds.

	Photo source: 6reenRoofs.com Featured
Project10

Brandywine Village Green
Wilmington, Delaware

The city of Wilmington in coordination with
the Greater Brandywine Village Revitalization
Group revitalized an abandoned gas station
site into a park and parking lot with green
infrastructure features to fit the immediate
needs of the community.

	Permeable pavement enables stormwater
to collect in piping under the parking lot,
where it then flows to a bioswale - a
depression in the surface used to collect
stormwater.

	Contaminants in runoff are absorbed by
sand and peat moss below the parking lot
and bioswale.

	Photo source: Region 3 PavinE its
Brownfields " Green " 11

ABANDONED GAS STATION REVITALIZATION EXAMPLES

Successful reuse is not one size fits all. Contact your local, state, and tribal brownfields program for their help.

EPA Resources: EPA Brownfields Grants13 | Anatomy of Brownfields Redevelopment14 | Climate Smart Brownfields Manual15


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WHY TRANSFORM ABANDONED GAS STATIONS INTO ENVIRONMENTAL

COMMUNITY ASSETS?

Determine with community members what benefits they want to see in the site reuse.

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Meeting Community Need

Many under-resourced and poor
communities do not have access to green
spaces. Transforming abandoned gas
stations into green spaces on main streets
and commercial areas has environmental
possibilities nationwide16.

The benefits associated with remediating
and revitalizing a single abandoned gas
station site can be impactful for a single
community. At a national scale17, adding
benefits from the thousands of sites across
the US may lead to significant benefits over
time (EPA 201418).

The following sections contain a few
reasons to introduce environmental assets
to a community in place of an abandoned
gas station.

Links to websites outside the EPA website are provided for the convenience of the user. Inclusion of information about a website, an organization, a
product or a service does not represent endorsement or approval by EPA, nor does it represent EPA opinion, policy or guidance unless specifically
indicated. EPA does not exercise any editorial control over the information that may be found at any non-EPA website.

Trees and Greenery

Planting a greater diversity of tree
species facilitates significant
recreational and aesthetic value found

in a 2019 analysis19.

The estimated beneficial effects of trees
on greenery include 17.4 million tons of
air pollution removed and $7 billion
value in human health savings in the
Conterminous U.S. according to a 2014
study20.

In addition to reducing pollution and
providing greenspace, trees also lower
energy bills and energy demand by
providing shade and cooling the air
through evapotranspiration21.

Green Infrastructure

Redevelopment of metro area brownfield
sites reduces impervious surfaces, a type
of green design for stormwater
management, by 73-80% compared to
business as usual development (EPA
202022).

Green infrastructure can bolster the
capacity to manage stormwater. It costs
less than conventional gray infrastructure
and reduces municipal water usage and
cooling costs.

Reducing stormwater-related impacts also
reduces a person's exposure to water
pollution and flooding-related health
hazards and their associated health
outcomes23, such as waterborne illnesses.

v>EPA

United States
Environmental Protection
Agency

EV Charging

Create an EV charging station to meet
growing charging needs and reduce
vehicle emissions. Decreasing greenhouse
gas emissions also reduces air pollution,
dependence on fossil fuels and helps
meet climate goals.

Assess the market potential of an EV
charging station in your community, as
demonstrated in Alameda County.
California24.

The property cleanup costs can also be
less expensive when repurposing the site
as an alternative fueling station compared
to other redevelopment options.

Read more on how to convert your
abandoned gas station site into an EV
charging station25.

Office of Research and Development

Center for Public Health and Environmental Assessment

Contact: bierwaaen,britta@epa.gov


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REFERENCES AND RESOURCES

1.	https://www.epa.gov/brownfields/overview-epas-brownfields-program

2.	https://www.epa.gov/water-research/urban-soils-ecosvstem-services-and-application-green-infrastructure-practices

3.	https://clu-in.org/download/remed/phytotechnologies-factsheet.pdf

4.	https://semspub.epa.gov/work/HQ/401583.pdf

5.	https://www.epa.gov/sites/default/files/2017-ll/documents/greeninfrastructure healthy communities factsheet.pdf

6.	https://www.epa.gov/green-infrastructure/what-green-infrastructure

7.	https://www.epa.gov/enviroatlas/ecosvstem-services-enviroatlas-l

8.	https://www.epa.gov/svstem/files/documents/2022-02/know-before-vou-grow.pdf

9.	https://sqbiofuels.com/

10.	https://www.greenroofs.com/2011/05/20/gpw-sequentials-biofueling-retail-station/

11.	https://19ianuary2017snapshot.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2Q15-ll/documents/de-wilmington.pdf

12.	https://www.npr.org/2019/10/26/773446805/gas-station-converts-to-electric-charging-station-and-speeds-ahead-of-curve

13.	https://www.epa.gov/brownfields/types-epa-brownfield-grant-funding

14.	https://www.epa.gov/brownfields/anatomv-brownfields-redevelopment-0

15.	https://www.epa.gov/sites/default/files/2021-06/documents/final climate smart brownfields manual 6-10-21 508 complaint.pdf

16.	https://www.epa.gov/sites/default/files/2015-09/documents/comben.pdf

17.	https://www.epa.gov/ust/ust-finder

18.	https://www.epa.gov/sites/default/files/2015-01/documents/prevention cleanup and reuse benefits from the federal ust program.pdf

19.	https://besiournals.onlinelibrary.wilev.com/doi/10.1002/pan3.14

20.	https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S02697491140Q23957via%3Dihub

21.	https://www.epa.gov/sites/default/files/2016-09/documents/heat island 4-page brochure 508 120413.pdf

22.	https://www.epa.gov/sites/default/files/2021-01/documents/environmental benefits of brownfields redevelopment final 560-r-20-001 -
508 compliant O.pdf

23.	https://www.epa.gov/sites/default/files/2017-ll/documents/greeninfrastructure healthy communities factsheet.pdf

24.	https://www.epa.gov/sites/default/files/2021-06/documents/alameda countv-ca bf to ev charging stations final 6-3-2021 508.pdf

25.	https://www.epa.gov/svstem/files/documents/2021-09/revitalizing-brownfield-sites-into-electric-vehicle-charging-stations.pdf

Links to websites outside the EPA website are provided for the convenience of the user. Inclusion of information about a website, an organization, a	United States	Office of Research and Development

product or a service does not represent endorsement or approval by EPA, nor does it represent EPA opinion, policy or guidance unless specifically	Environmental Protection	Center for Pu blic Health and Environmental Assessment

indicated. EPA does not exercise any editorial control over the information that may be found at any non-EPA website.	* Agency

Contact: bierwaeen.brittafSeDa.gov


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