The City of Clearwater has been designated a Federal and State Brownfields area since 1997. Brownfields are abandoned, idle or underutilized sites that are either perceived or actually contaminated. Clearwater defines brownfields as "redevelopment opportunities that result in viable economic and community development, residential, and open-space/greenspace projects." The Clearwater Brownfields Area (CBA) has approximately 244 regulatory listed sites located in over 7,000 properties spread across more than 1,842 acres.
The growing green sector of the economy covers everything from green building construction to brownfields environmental site assessments, asbestos abatement, to brownfields cleanup. Clearwater has moved aggressively to receive $4.3 million in EPA, State and related brownfields grant funding.
The Brownfields Program is administered through the Economic Development & Housing Department. More than 70 private sector projects and 17 city-related projects have used the brownfields source of grant funds. Below are a few of the completed projects:
- Harbor Oaks Shopping Center is a former auto dealership. The anchor tenant, Publix Supermarket, leases 27,087 square feet in the 44,087-square-foot center. 125 new jobs were created.
- Frank Crum Office Complex is a former 14-acre city-owned property. The 130,000-square-foot office campus was built on seven acres, and an additional seven acres remain unimproved. 400 jobs were created at this location.
- Palmetto Park Apartments, formerly called the Greenwood Apartment Complex, is a $14-million project that involved the acquisition and renovation of 25 multi-family buildings. Grant funds assisted with impact fees.
- EEI Enterprises, Inc. is a contract manufacturing company specializing in circuit card assembly and design services. The 18,000-square-foot facility is located 703 Grand Central and has 25 employees.
- The 45 Harbor Oaks Townhomes located in the block south of the Harbor Oaks Shopping Center has a value of $12 million.
- PostcardMania.com is a marketing and direct mail company with 100+ employees at the 404 S. Martin Luther King corporate offices.
- 804-806 Pennsylvania, a former junkyard, is now two single-family Affordable Homes.
- 1310 N. Martin Luther King Police substation was a former gasoline service station. One police sergeant and five police officers now work at this substation.
- Willa Carson Free Health Resource Center, 1108 N. Martin Luther King, was a former gasoline station and garage.
- Clearwater Northwest Fire and Rescue Station #51 is a former contaminated junkyard. The city built a $3-million facility on 1.59 acres.
- Prospect Lake Park is a regional Stormwater Facility. Downtown's untreated stormwater run-off is now directed to an improved Myrtle Avenue drainage system and Prospect Lake reservoir. The city designed an environmentally and visually pleasing retention area that includes a picnic area, walking path, native vegetation and a waterfall.
Contact the Economic Development Department at (727) 562-4054 for more information on Brownfields incentives, or visit the Economic Development & Housing Department's Brownfields Web page.