JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-LACKLAND, Texas-- The Environmental Protection Agency recently named former Griffiss Air Force Base, New York, as one of its 2021 National Federal Facility Excellence in Site Reuse award winners.
According to a recent news release from the EPA, the award recognizes the hard work, innovative thinking and cooperation among the Air Force Civil Engineer Center Base Realignment and Closure program, EPA and state regulatory agencies, and local redevelopment authority to achieve the restoration and reuse of Griffiss.
Redevelopment at the former base — now designated the Griffiss Business and Technology Park — enabled nearly 6,000 new jobs and $700 million in capital improvements, removed 2,800 acres from the National Priorities List and attracted 72 new businesses in the area. In the four years the award has existed, the AFCEC-led BRAC program has been recognized by the EPA for excellence in site reuse three times.
“We take great pride in moments like this,” said Dr. Stephen TerMaath, BRAC program management division chief. “We are thankful to have been part of the outstanding community redevelopment program. This award recognizes the collaboration of all the stakeholders to make Griffiss Business and Technology Park a premier reuse of a former Air Force base.”
After Griffiss AFB closed in 1995, the Air Force began working toward redevelopment through federal cleanup actions and working with public-private partners to achieve early property transfers. To date, AFCEC has invested $173.1 million toward cleanup efforts at the former base, with another $27.7 million anticipated to complete cleanup.
Griffiss Business and Technology Park hosts projects including an FAA drone test site at Griffiss International Airport, Orgill Distribution Center and Aviation Gateway. The BRAC cleanup program also supported significant redevelopment including local art and education in the community through a new high school and sculpture garden at the park.
“It’s been exciting watching Griffiss’ redevelopment flourish over the years,” said David Farnsworth, BRAC environmental coordinator. “Even with Air Force activities winding down, our commitment to the community and environmental resolution remains.”
For more information on the Griffiss Business and Technology Park, visit https://www.afcec.af.mil/Home/BRAC/Griffiss.