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MALVERN, PA-Gov. Ed Rendell grants Brownfield Action Team assistance to King of Prussia-based O’Neill Properties Group for its redevelopment of the 77-acre Worthington Steel site. The BAT program creates a single point of contact with the state in order to accelerate the permitting process for brownfield clean up and redevelopment.

The steel plant closed in 2002. O’Neill’s master plan won the approval of the E. Whitehead Township board of supervisors this summer. It calls for 500,000 sf of restaurant, retail and entertainment space; 600 multifamily residential units, and 700,000 sf of class A office space within a Main Street, community setting.

Brian O’Neill, founder and chairman of the development company, estimates the construction cost at $500 million. The company has obtained $7 million in federal funding for the project. O’Neill says it has entered into agreements with private sector sources and is also pursuing several sources of state funding, including the governor’s Business in Our Sites program, which provides financing to prepare sites for reuse. “BAT approval,” O’Neill says, “will go a long way in helping us realize the full potential of this neglected eyesore.”

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