The Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development is accepting applications for a new grant program designed to help communities plan for remediating and redeveloping clusters of brownfield sites.

According to Gov. Dannel Malloy, the Brownfield Area-Wide Revitalization Planning Grant Program is a two-year, $1 million pilot the General Assembly approved and Malloy signed earlier this year. It is modeled after the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Area-Wide Planning Grant program.

Connecticut the past few years has spent $130 million toward brownfield remediation. The state has more than 100 related projects.

The new brownfield program encourages communities to consider areas such as neighborhoods, downtowns, waterfront districts, or other sections with multiple brownfields and develop strategies to reuse the parcels for businesses, housing and public amenities. The program, said Malloy, will enable local governments to create long-range plans for multiple sites.

The pilot planning funding round, initially capitalized with $1 million, is open to municipalities, economic development agencies and regional councils of government.

Grants of up to $200,000 will be awarded competitively to eligible applicants. Eligible uses of funds include community visioning processes, market studies, mapping, inventory, infrastructure and streetscape planning, and conceptual designs.

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