MILWAUKEE, November 5, 2009 – A vibrant marsh blighted by 125 years of fill and manufacturing has been remediated and is being honored with the nation’s top award for Brownfield redevelopment. The Menomonee Valley Industrial Center and Community Park (MVIC) in Milwaukee is the 2009 Region 5 winner of the Phoenix Award and is a contender for the Grand Phoenix Award – the top brownfield project in the United States.

MVIC is on a 133-acre property that re-establishes nearly 60 acres of industrial development, which will in turn support approximately one million square feet of new buildings. MVIC has provided significant economic impacts to the community through the introduction of six new industries since September 2005, an associated 700 sustained jobs, and a total projection of 1,200 jobs. City tax revenue is increasing by $1 million.

CH2M HILL, a global full-service engineering, construction, and operations firm, partnered with the Redevelopment Authority of the City of Milwaukee, non-profit groups, regulatory agencies, the community, and prospective developers to create a sustainability-focused Brownfield's success. From the early days of master planning to present-day new business construction, CH2M HILL has helped transform an otherwise blighted property into a thriving redevelopment, creating the following additional successes along the way:
  • Beneficial re-use of 900,000 cubic yards of nearby highway excavation spoils, 20,000 cubic yards of recycled concrete, onsite management of over 120,000 cubic yards of asbestos containing demolition debris, and integration of recycled glass, timbers and brick into development landscaping.
  • Significant site improvements, raising the land out of the floodplain, stabilizing and enhancing the riverbanks, and structurally improving the site subgrade to support sustainable redevelopment.
  • Design and construction of a state-of-the-art, centralized storm water treatment facility that doubles as a recreational park.
  • Creation of $120 million in ecological, recreational, and aesthetic value on the property.
  • Strong local work-force capacity building program that utilized an unprecedented 40 percent small, disadvantaged business participation, inner city youth internships, college-bound training programs, and heavy community participation.
  • More than $25 million in value-engineered cost savings and new-found revenue streams from the beneficial re-use of materials.
  • New construction meeting Milwaukee’s sustainability guidelines and registration of one of MVIC’s buildings for LEED® Silver industrial certification.
  • Creation of 35 acres of new recreational area including three new soccer fields, a stabilized river bank allowing canoeing and fishing access, ecological study areas, and new bike / pedestrian trails.
The participation and dedication of public and private entities from project inception to build-out has helped to transform the Valley from a place of environmental contamination to a unique eco-industrial park, where manufacturers apply lean manufacturing principles to their buildings, showcasing cutting-edge designs in sustainability.

The project will be honored at an awards ceremony during the Brownfields 2009 Conference in New Orleans, Louisiana, November 16-18, 2009.

Established in 1997, Phoenix Award winners represent outstanding revitalization projects from each of the 10 U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regions as well as projects that have a special community impact. The winning projects were specially selected by a panel of environmental professionals and business and government leaders based on a set of five criteria: magnitude of the project, innovative techniques, solutions to regulatory/social issues, and impact upon the community.