Many states have grant programs to incentivize the redevelopment of brownfield sites; however, doing so at a more local level presents unique challenges and opportunities. New York City created and manages the City’s Brownfield Incentive Grants (BIG) Program. BIG is a unique funding model. Whether you are developing property or are an entity that administers grants, this is a program you should explore.
- Comprehensive Funding: The BIG Program awards grants throughout the development process, from the earliest stages of information gathering through environmental investigation and cleanup work.
- Cost Control: As a reimbursement program, with predefined line items specifying how much can be reimbursed for specific eligible activities, the process is clear and ensures cost predictability.
- Compliance: Technical deliverables and invoices are required to demonstrate compliance with each eligible line item.
- Technical Expertise: All environmental work must be approved by a qualified vendor, an individual that is part of a group that is qualified by the BIG Administrator based on experience.
- Accountability: All information is saved in a custom designed database system, which tracks project metrics, grant processing, and approval queues and also stores all technical deliverables.
- Efficiency: The BIG program is administered by a third party to handle application intake, technical reviews, grantee communication, administration, and funding disbursement.
Since the program’s creation in 2010, more than 300 applications have been processed, resulting in grants that has reimbursed over $6.5 million in eligible brownfield project expenses. More information on BIG regulations, grant types, awards, requirements, qualified vendor information and applications can be found at: www.nyc.gov/BIG.