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Worcester Brownfields Inventory Project

DOCUMENT: GIS Geodatabase

CLIENT: City of Worcester Brownfields Roundtable Consortium

DATE: 2004-05

Project Description:

Like many Northeastern post-industrial cities, Worcester, Massachusetts has its share of underutilized, often toxic brownfields locations that blight the urban landscape. These sites are often regulated by several agencies for very specific releases, but identifying and categorizing each site relative to the total within the city limits is a technical challenge. Under the auspices of the Worcester’s Technical Services Department, this project identifies and maps all known brownfields within the city of Worcester.

For each brownfields site, regulated releases were centralized in a relational GIS database after verifying site locations within Worcester’s Block/Lot parcel map. As many sites have lapsed tax archives, ownership of the sites was often a challenge to determine. As the sites were verified, the database was constructed so that each site could be ranked for development potential relative to the total of sites. This suitability index was developed through the input of many technical, political and community interests. Phases I and II of the project were presented to the City of Worcester Brownfields Roundtable Consortium during the 2004-05 term of the project.

Project Components:

-Project components included extensive geodatabase design, suitability analysis and community outreach.

City of Worcester brownfields ranked according to their suitability for redevelopment.
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Behind each verified property, a geodatabase houses parcel, ownership and environmental records.
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A unique component of the project is the ability to see environmental records over time for each site.