What is a Brownfield?
"A brownfield is a property, the expansion, redevelopment, or reuse of which may be complicated by the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substance, pollutant, or contaminant." - EPA
The Brownfields Program is run by the EPA: ⇛ www.epa.gov/brownfields/overview-epas-brownfields-program
As you walk around Bloomfield, you can find abandoned commercial or industrial sites. Some of these sites have recognized or perceived environmental impacts that hinder them from being re-developed. They negatively affect property values, and offer no benefit to the economy or to the community in their current state.
Where should we start?
The old Aerex Refinery on both corners of W. Blanco Blvd and 5th Streets has been identified as a Brownfields site.
⇛ Project Presentation (November 2020) (PDF 749 KB)
Leaks and spills from the refinery contaminated the soils. The site could be transformed into an economic driver and benefit to the neighborhood and City as a whole.
Who can help us? The City has partnered with the following entities to gather information about the site, engage the public in re-use ideas, and make preparations to apply for an EPA Brownfields Clean-Up Grant.
• NMED - Groundwater Quality Bureau - Remediation Oversight Section
• Kansas State University - Technical Assistance to Brownfields
• Bloomfield Public Schools
• Private Landowners
If awarded, the Grant would pay for most of the work needed to clean up any contamination from the old refinery, and prepare the site for re-development.
What are our re-use ideas?
There has been some thought of transforming the site into a multi-purpose public park with a skate park, athletic fields, and walking paths. Other ideas have been mixed-use business and residential. When all three parcels are considered together, all of these uses could be achieved.
How can I provide input?
The project is at the stage where community input is needed to improve the grant application. A Community Workshop was planned in March 2020, but the COVID-19 pandemic prevented the workshop from occurring. The City postponed the Grant Application in 2020, and plans to apply in 2021. The Grants are highly competitive, and the more community involvement, the better chance this project will be awarded. Be on the look-out for the newly advertised date of the Community Workshop in 2021.
In November 2020, Mayor Cynthia Atencio challenged a group of students to develop re-use ideas and report back to Council. Encouraged by Bloomfield Teachers Autumn McMurray and Tina Schroeder, Students Mikayla Tozer and Lane Hunt refined their ideas and presented to City Council on January 25, 2021. Their presentation engaged the Council and started a community dialogue about the project. The presentation is provided here: ⇛ Student Workshop Presentation (PDF 1.4 MB)
A San Juan College Student, William Thomas, also reported on the project as a class assignment in December 2020. His report is provided here: ⇛ Student Report (PDF 54 KB)
E-mail your questions, comments, or re-use ideas to Jason at