Brownfield Grants and Resources

What is a brownfield? 

A brownfield is a property that is vacant or underutilized due to contamination or the perception of contamination. Brownfield sites vary in size, location, age, and past use; they can be anything from a large closed industrial facility to a small corner gas station to a methamphetamine contaminated property. Brownfields are located across Tennessee, in towns of any size, rural or urban.

Why is brownfield redevelopment important? 

Brownfield properties are often abandoned and sitting idle, without upkeep or any taxes being paid. Abandoned properties with contamination can pose a risk to human health and the environment. Even if the brownfield has little or no contamination, these sites can attract vandalism and illegal dumping, which impact property values and depress our communities. 

A revitalized brownfield site reduces threat to human health and the environment, eliminates community eyesores, creates jobs, increases the tax base and property values, promotes community involvement, encourages the use of existing infrastructure, and attracts investment in local neighborhoods.

Grant Opportunities

There are grants to address brownfields from the federal government and the state of Tennessee. The federal government offers several brownfield grant opportunities, including funds for environmental assessment and cleanup. Typically, these grants are offered on a yearly basis. For more information on what funding may be available, please visit TDEC’s Federal Brownfield Grant Assistant page.

In the spring of 2023, Governor Bill Lee introduced legislation that would create a state-administered grant and technical support program for cleanup and economic development of existing brownfields. For more information on state brownfield grants, please visit the Brownfield Redevelopment Area Grant (BRAG) page

Brownfield Voluntary Cleanup Oversight and Assistance Program

Tennessee’s Voluntary Oversight and Assistance Program (VOAP) was established in 1994 with the goal of encouraging prospective purchasers to redevelop Brownfield properties by limiting the liability for new owners and providing oversight in the investigation and clean-up process. Please visit our VOAP site for more information.

BRAG verses EPA Funding Comparison Chart
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