Daines Brings EPA Administrator Wheeler to Montana, Tour Kalispell Brownfield Sites
Daines helped secured funding for major redevelopment project, economic boost
KALISPELL, MT – U.S. Senator Steve Daines today brought U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Andrew Wheeler to Kalispell to visit multiple Brownfield sites including Glacier Rail Park, the former CHS Country Store, the CHS Agronomy Center, and SunRift Restaurant. Daines secured funding for cleanup of the contaminated sites which allowed for redevelopment of the areas boosting the local economy and supporting jobs.
To download the Senator’s full statement, click HERE
“It’s great to have Administrator Wheeler here from the EPA, who came from Washington, D.C. out to Montana to see an example of what we can do with this partnership in our communities, when we take these Brownfield sites to restore it and reclaim it and in this case it is this vital, new, grain loading facility,” Daines said. “This is a big win for Montana. A big win for our economy. It is a great way to better utilize the precious resources we have here in Montana.”
The first stop of the visit was Glacier Rail Park, which was a part of the Kalispell Core & Rail Plan. The EPA Brownfields program is helping to redevelop some of the properties on the new site. Glacier Rail Park is built atop a former quarry which has allowed rail dependent businesses in Downtown Kalispell to relocate to larger, more modern facilities within the business park. The next phase of the project involves the replacement of the rail tracks through downtown with a walking trail and new business and residential developments along the trail.
Daines and EPA Administrator Wheeler concluded the visit at the SunRift Restaurant, which opened in March 2020. The SunRift provides a view of the railroad tracks that will soon be transformed into the multi-use Kalispell Trail.
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This is the second time Daines has brought Wheeler to Montana emphasizing the need to cleanup Montana’s contaminated areas.
The EPA's Brownfields Program provides direct funding for brownfields assessment, cleanup, revolving loans, environmental job training, technical assistance, training, and research.
Daines has been a strong supporter of the EPA’s Brownfield Program to help build up Montana infrastructure needs to create jobs and spur growth in rural communities like Kalispell. He supported and pushed for Kalispell to receive these funds.
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