The community received a $200,000 federal Brownfield's grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to create a recreational park. It was one of eight grants awarded in Michigan and the only one in the Upper Peninsula. The grant will pay for an ecological damage assessment from past industrial uses at and around Sandy Point, a 95-acre parcel owned by the tribe along Lake Superior. The property includes 2.5 miles of waterfront. Brownfields are considered abandoned or underused properties where contamination has slowed redevelopment. EPA said Sandy Point includes about 6 billion pounds of stamp sands left over from mining activities in the early 20th century. The money will be used to research and measure the contamination, identify options for cleanup and create a preliminary plan for redevelopment.
The Little Red School House day-care center in Houghton received a $769,000 federal grant. The center has a current limit of 40 children and after expansion will be able to include about 130 youngsters. Baraga-Houghton-Keweenaw Head Start Director Rod Liimatinen said the expanded center will include a parent resource center, a specially designed space for about 30 infants and toddlers, a kitchen, laundry room and office space. He said the grant will cover all costs of site development and construction. Furnishings, teaching materials and playgrounds, toys will be funded separately.