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Once-Contaminated Fifth Ward Superfund Site To Finally Get New Life

Fifth Ward Superfund Site at 3617 Baer Street
Fifth Ward Superfund site at 3617 Baer St.

After years of complications and delay, redevelopment work is set to begin at an EPA Superfund site in Houston's Fifth Ward. The Environmental Protection Agency said Tuesday it would work with developers to help revamp a handpicked selection of 31 historically contaminated sites. One of those sites is the former foundry in Houston's Fifth Ward at 3617 Baer St. Local developer Frank Liu has already spent money to complete the site's rehabilitation with plans to build 538 housing units, but years of delay stalled progress. Now, the plan is moving forward, EPA Regional Administrator Anne Idsal said.

“We are hopeful to see construction begin at some point this spring,” she said. Liu was slightly less optimistic, telling News 88-7 that he is hopeful for sometime this year.

Liu has reportedly been in talks with the city, which could provide additional funding for the site if it includes affordable housing, but Liu has no solidified plan, so what type of housing will occupy the site is still unclear.