Biz beat: Eagan gets grants to clean up contaminated commercial sites

  • Article by: SUSAN FEYDER , Star Tribune
  • Updated: January 25, 2013 - 6:22 PM

Eagan was among eight cities recently awarded grants from the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) to investigate or clean up contaminated sites for commercial development projects.

Eagan received $596,955 in cleanup funding for the 40-acre Cedar Grove site that is contaminated with petroleum and other pollutants. Gas stations and a mall were on the site previously. The redevelopment will include 440,000 square feet of retail space in an upscale outlet mall to be built by Baltimore-based Paragon Outlet Partners. The new development is expected to create 880 jobs, increase the city's tax base by $2.8 million and leverage $109 million in private investment. Remaining cleanup activities will be paid by the city.

The state agency said the $5.3 million awarded under the agency's Contamination Cleanup Grant Program statewide will create 1,146 jobs and retain another 339 jobs. Since its inception in 1995, the program has awarded more than $130 million in grants statewide. Local authorities have used those funds to reclaim 3,032 acres of contaminated property for residential, commercial and industrial development. More than 19,000 jobs have been created and more than 15,000 jobs retained.

Minneapolis received seven grants. Other cities awarded one grant each included Baudette, Brooklyn Center, Duluth, Hopkins, Hutchinson, and St. Paul.

DEED cleanup grants account for about 75 percent of public funding used for reclaiming polluted sites and brownfields statewide. The remaining 25 percent comes from the Metropolitan Council, cities, counties, other local units of government, private landowners and developers.

Workplace safety program

Apple Valley Business Watch will conduct a program on preventing workplace violence at 8 a.m. Thursday in the LaGrand Conference Center of the Grandstay Hotel, 7083 W. 153rd St.

The program, "Business Lockdowns and Crisis Planning Training," will deal with a variety of emergencies, including bomb threats, active shooters, criminal activity and terrorism. The program will feature a presentation by a Bloomington police officer who has trained businesses at the Mall of America on this topic.

Those wishing to attend should RSVP to Officer Michael Tietz at 952-953-2709 or by e-mail at mtietz@cityofapplevalley.org.

Apple Valley Business Watch is a nonprofit organization created to provide information, education and relationships that serve to prevent crime in the Apple Valley area business community.

Dakota County recognized

Fourth Economy Consulting, a Pittsburgh-based economic development consulting firm, has named Dakota County to its index of the top 10 large communities ideally positioned to attract investment and manage economic growth.

The index considers several measures within five areas: investment, talent, sustainability, place and diversity. Specific indicators include wage and employment growth, education levels, drive times, home values, minority business ownership, agricultural and manufacturing capacity, and population density.

Dakota County was ranked sixth. Durham County in North Carolina, home to Duke University, was No. 1.

Send your Dakota County business news to susan.feyder@startribune.com. Susan Feyder • 952-746-3282

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