DAILY NEWS Mar 2, 2009 6:41 PM - 0 comments

Redevelopment framework for old service stations

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The Ontario Centre for Environmental Technology Advancement (OCETA), the Canadian Petroleum Products Institute (CPPI), and the Province of Ontario announced today the release of the online REDEVELOPMENT FRAMEWORK FOR FORMER SERVICE STATIONS™ in the Province of Ontario.

Former service stations that are under-utilized or abandoned are the most common type of brownfield site found in Ontario. These sites can be challenging to redevelop as they are often small in size and may be contaminated, with the cost of remediation outweighing the current property value. Industry and government from across Canada have identified the need for more effective common language guidance on how to address the barriers to remediation, rehabilitation, and reuse, in order create value and navigate the approval processes to bring former service station sites back into the urban fabric. Stakeholders are interested in guidance that will help them redevelop service stations and return these sites to a safe use in a timelier manner and at a reduced cost.

"To address this need, the Redevelopment Framework for Former Service Stations was developed as an online decision-support tool designed to guide municipalities, property owners, developers, and other stakeholders through the redevelopment of under-utilized and abandoned service stations", stated Tammy Lomas-Jylha, Vice President of OCETA.

"The standardized approach, created with the assistance of a multi-stakeholder interdisciplinary committee, provides a transparent and streamlined mechanism to make apparent the regulatory context", said Hon Lu, Brownfields Coordinator for the Province of Ontario. "By mapping out the decision making process, the Framework assists in reducing approval delays and common misunderstandings between developers and municipalities."

The Framework outlines the process that stakeholders should follow when redeveloping typical sites. "By applying the key elements, guiding principles and best practices identified in the Framework, users will improve their ability to successfully navigate and accelerate the redevelopment of former service stations", said Tammy Lomas-Jylha.

The foundation of the Redevelopment Framework involves Four Stages: Setting the Stage, Evaluation and Planning, Implementation, and Management. These stages have been grouped into Four Streams of a Redevelopment Project: Finance, Technical, Land Use Planning, and External Communication.

Within the Framework, a number of specific tools have been developed to assist users with Screening for Property Use & Redevelopment Potential; understanding the approval process and timelines with Implementing Remediation and Risk Management, and with the Selection of Remediation Technologies and Risk Management Approaches.

Users will also be able to access case studies, example templates, and other resources including information on the application of interim uses for former service station sites.

"Brownfield redevelopment has been an undervalued opportunity for economic development and we welcome Ontario’s advancement of this important framework”, stated Peter Boag, President of CPPI.

"The toolkit provides outstanding clarification on the process for redevelopment of former service station sites and includes a number of very useful reference tools", said George Vincent, Chair of CPPI's National Contaminated Sites Committee. "Its greatest value, however, will be to bring all of the parties together with a common context and language for idle site renewal projects."

The Framework is a free online tool that is user-friendly and easy to use available on the aboutREMEDIATION Web site. www.aboutRemediation.com/ServiceStations

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