Mo-Kan works to facilitate the cleanup of contaminated properties, called a brownfield, through a Revolving Loan Fund Grant awarded from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, thus spurring reuse and redevelopment of those properties.

Your community might have a brownfield if you have any abandoned buildings or a vacant gas station. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) defines brownfield as “real property, the expansion, redevelopment, or reuse of which may be complicated by the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substance, pollutant or contaminant.”

These types of sites include abandoned factories, other industrial facilities, service stations, oil storage facilities, dry cleaning businesses and other sites or facilities that have dealt with hazardous substances, pollutants or contaminants. The level of contamination is determined through a testing process.  

Service Region Projects

The service region to cleanup brownfields covers 15 counties in northeast Kansas and northwest Missouri, including Atchison, Brown, Doniphan, Jackson, Jefferson and Nemaha counties in Kansas, and Atchison, Andrew, Buchanan, Clinton, DeKalb, Gentry, Holt, Nodaway and Worth counties in Missouri.

Mo-Kan Regional Council was awarded a $1 million Cleanup and Revolving Loan Fund Grant from the EPA in 2014. Mo-Kan can provide loans and subgrants of up to $200,000 for cleanup remediation to businesses, non-profits and local governments, which only require a 20 percent cost share.

This redevelopment of brownfields helps the environment, the community and industries. Cleaning up contaminated properties creates employment opportunities, rejuvenates blighted areas and preserves underdeveloped green space.

In 2017, the City of Agency, Missouri, applied to Mo-Kan Regional Council for a subgrant to remediate a vacant property in Agency. The site is the old Woody’s Grocery Store (a convenience store and gasoline station) that was developed in 2004. The site contains a canopy with fueling pumps and a concrete pad. In 2011, the convenience store burned down and the fueling tanks were emptied.

The subgrant will remove two 8,000 and one 6,000 underground storage tanks. The tanks will be excavated, cut open and cleaned prior to disposal or recycling. The site will then be backfilled with soil and the city will reuse the property. The city plans to use the site to expand the city park with a basketball court and a horseshoe pit. Agency will use the site to create a basketball court and a horseshoe pit.

The Missouri Department of Natural Resources Brownfield Voluntary Cleanup program will oversee the project, and work will begin spring 2018.

Mo-Kan is also working with the Friends of St. Joseph on a potential brownfield cleanup project at the old Livestock Exchange Building.  

For more information about Mo-Kan’s brownfield RLF program, call our office at (816) 233-3144.