The Boulevard Brownfields Initiative

Federal Boulevard Brownfields Assessment Grant

The City and County of Denver, in partnership with the City of Sheridan and Urban Land Conservancy, has been awarded a $500,000 Brownfields assessment grant from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to advance the cleanup and revitalization of a 6.5 mile long stretch of the Federal Boulevard Corridor. The revitalization corridor will extend from 6th Avenue to Sheridan's southern border, ending at South Clay Street, and Extend two blocks on either side (east and west). The grant will fund at least 10 sites for environmental site assessments in Denver and Sheridan to evaluate potential for site contamination and if present characterize the extent of contamination. In addition, if contamination is found, cleanup approaches and cost estimates will be prepared.

This corridor was chosen because of the historical environmental justice issues and disinvestment in the area has created blighted vacant commercial lots. Within the corridor area, the Denver Department of Public Health & Environment (DDPHE) has identified 73 historical gas stations and 21 former dry cleaners. It’s also an area where Denver has collaborated with the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) to invest $29 million to make the corridor, which is historically one of the busiest and most dangerous streets in the metro area, safer for all modes of transit. Those safety improvements include: 

  • Raising medians
  • Adding crosswalks
  • Replacing sidewalks
  • Planting trees

The City of Sheridan is also investing to improve the safety of Federal Blvd. As part of Sheridan’s Driving Change Bond Improvement project, several portions of missing sidewalks (with construction costs totaling $464,000) were constructed along the Federal Boulevard corridor in 2019. Sheridan is improving 14 bus stops with a $158,000 grant from the Denver Regional Council of Governments, of which half will be located in the corridor. 

Brownfield redevelopment will complement the investments that are already being made in the area. This project is the perfect intersection of need and opportunity. Affordable housing is in high demand, which is a focus priority for this grant. The public investment in making Federal Boulevard a safer, more walkable community and the existing strong community roots, makes the area ripe for investment by local business owners and affordable housing developers alike.  

Ultimately, these grant funds will remove the environmental uncertainty associated with redevelopment opportunities within the corridor, as Denver has done prior grant corridors like Colfax Avenue and the South Platte River. This grant is the first very important step to improve and better understand any environmental challenges to redevelopment, improve potential health risks to the community, and ultimately help encourage investment in local business and affordable housing throughout the Federal Boulevard corridor. 

Quick Facts

  • $500,000 in technical assistance funding
  • Funding for environment site assessments (ESAs) of potential affordable housing projects, public amenities, and other projects. These activities include phase I/II ESAs, asbestos and lead-based paint surveys, petroleum underground tank removal, remediation feasibility studies, and remediation engineer’s costs estimates.
  • Approximately 10 revitalization sites within the 6.5-mile Federal Boulevard Corridor: from 6th Avenue in Denver through Sheridan’s southern border, ending at South Clay Street. The east and west borders of the corridor extend approximately two blocks in either direction.
  • Partnering with City of Sheridan and Urban Land Conservancy
  • Three-year grant period

Next Steps:

If you are a property owner or developer who is interested in redeveloping property within the Federal Boulevard Corridor, please contact us for details on the grant program and learn how this can facilitate your redevelopment project.