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Building on Hellmuth+Bicknese's expertise on the sustainable redevelopment of Brownfield sites, the firm was chosen by the Western Illinois Redevelopment Council (WIRC) to work with the Illinois EPA, the City of Springfield, the Economic Development Council and the Chamber of Commerce to organize and lead a Sustainable Design Charrette for a 19 acre Brownfield Site (a former Pillsbury Mill, once a major employer for the area) and the surrounding 300+ acre residential neighborhood.

The focus of the charrette was to initiate redevelopment ideas focusing on the core site but also take into account the surrounding neighborhood and include its residents in the process. Hellmuth+Bicknese prepared a series of background maps of the community (City of Springfield), the neighborhood (Pillsbury Mills Neighborhood) and the Brownfields Site itself (former Pillsbury Mills site). The analysis included cultural, medical, service, and educational resources.

Hellmuth+Bicknese also looked at the Sustainable Development of the surrounding neighborhood including implementing Natural Stormwater Managements into an upgrade of the existing infrastructure as well as enhancing walkability of the neighborhood by analyzing Safe Routes to School.

The sustainable design charrette was followed by a session led by Bell Boyd and Lloyd, a Chicago-based law firm specializing in the legal aspects of Brownfields development.

Over 60 people attended the charrette and the group was broken down into 7 design teams, each with a facilitator (part of the Hellmuth+Bicknese team) and an elected Team Leader. The final report will be available on the IEPA and Springfield EDC website.

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