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BIGGBY® COFFEE | Repurposing Property with Known Contamination

Biggby Coffee


The City of Portage had long considered this former gas and service station as a priority for reuse. Not only had the city received complaints about its blighted structure from residents in the adjacent neighborhood, there was also a citywide desire to improve the streetscapes of the commercial district. However, known contamination stemming from the property’s former use as a gas and service station presented an obstacle to financing the project.


After a developer expressed interest in acquiring and repurposing the property in 2013, the Kalamazoo County Brownfield Redevelopment Authority (KCBRA) used its U.S. EPA Brownfields Assessment Grant funds to finance due diligence activities on site. As the contracted Environmental Consultant for the KCBRA, Envirologic conducted a Phase I Environmental Site Assessment to support site acquisition. Envirologic then prepared a Baseline Environmental Assessment and due care documentation, which provided the developer with liability protection and outlined their due care obligations going forward.

To help the KCBRA manage these costs, Envirologic prepared a Brownfield Plan, which allowed the KCBRA and developer to receive reimbursement for eligible activities through tax increment financing.

After the developer purchased the property, the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy performed cleanup activities at the site, including removal of contaminated soil and groundwater.

BIGGBY® COFFEE leased the newly redeveloped property, and the shop was opened to the public in November of 2018. Through this project’s completion, a blighted, contaminated property was cleaned up and returned to productive use. Further, this project brought new jobs and investment to the Portage community while providing a public meeting and gathering place.