Riverbank LRA

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

1. When will the Riverbank Army Ammunition Plant close?
In the fall of 2005, Riverbank Army Ammunition Plant was officially recommended for closure. The facility officially deactivated March 31, 2010, marking the end of its cartridge production mission after almost 70 years. Although the facility is still owned by the U.S. Department of the Army, the Riverbank Local Redevelopment Authority has been operating the site as a business park pending the Army’s final disposal of the property. The City Council, sitting as the RLRA Board, approved the submission of an application for conveyance of the property in November 2009. The application is currently awaiting final review and approval by the Secretary of the Army.

2. Who will decide what happens to the property?
The Riverbank Local Redevelopment Authority is the federally recognized entity responsible for preparing and implementing the reuse and redevelopment of the transitioning the property from Federal to local control. The RLRA has worked closely with the community and other key stakeholders in the development of the Reuse Plan.

3. What is the City’s plan for the property?
The Reuse Plan is the primary planning document that lays out the community’s vision for the conversion of the base from military to civilian use. A central component of the Reuse Plan is to retain and grow private sector tenants occupying the facility and to attract new private sector tenants for the express purpose of generating jobs to replace those lost as part of the closure process and the sagging economy. The Reuse Plan is a guide meant to invigorate responsible economic development at the site. The Reuse Plan envisions an industrial business park where traditional and a new “green” and environmentally-conscious businesses can thrive and grow.

4. What is the status of the environmental cleanup?
A comprehensive program was undertaken by the federal government to systematically investigate, clean up, and monitor environmental contamination that may have resulted from past operations at the installation. This program began in the 1980’s, and is being carried out through several branches of the Army, the Department of Defense and the Environmental Protection Agency. Additional testing and characterization of the environmental health of the property has been performed by the RLRA and the Army Corps of Engineers, resulting in the development of a new program to ensure health and safety of the workers at the site.

The Army is responsible for investigating and cleaning up the site pursuant to the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act of 1980 (CERCLA), the Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act (SARA, 1986), the National Contingency Plan (NCP), and other federal and state laws and regulations.

The cleanup process is overseen by several federal and state environmental regulatory agencies.including the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC), the Regional Water Quality Control Board (Water Board), and other federal and state agencies.

The Army is required to ensure that the facility is investigated and cleaned up to a level that is protective of public health and the environment. Areas of the base cannot be transferred or sold for reuse until after the investigation and clean up of these areas is completed, unless the Army, the State and the City elect to use a process known as the Early Transfer Authority (ETA).

Early Transfer Authority is designed to assist communities in expediting the reuse of a former base while ensuring that the cleanup is completed. Under ETA, property may be transferred prior to the completion of cleanup, provided the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), state Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) and the state Regional Water Quality Control Board (RWQCB) are satisfied that safeguards are in place to protect human health and the environment.

The Army remains liable after the property is transferred to complete or fund the completion of the required cleanup in a manner that is protective of human heath and the environment. The cleanup must still meet all EPA, DTSC and RWQCB requirements.

6. How many businesses are left at the site?
The facility currently houses 39 businesses. The site has generated business interest from across the nation and had visitors from as far away as China and Germany. For a complete list of existing tenants, please visit the Riverbank Industrial Complex site at www.riverbankindustrialcomplex.com.

7. Can anyone visit the site?
The former Riverbank Army Ammunition Plant is open to the public, but out of respect for the businesses on the site, you will need to sign in with security at the front gate before entering.

8. How much did the City have to pay for the property?
In an effort to spur economic redevelopment and job creation efforts at closed installations, the Department of Defense allows for the transfer of property to the local community at no-cost. The RLRA submitted an economic development application that requests all but four parcels of the former military facility at no-cost. The excluded four parcels will be offered for sale by the Army via public auction.

9. Can the City sell the property and keep the money?
In accordance to the Memorandum of Agreement associated with the conveyance application, the RLRA must use any proceeds from a sale, lease during the first seven years after the execution of a deed to support long-term job creation and economic development of the installation. In other words, the RLRA can sell property, both real and personal, but the proceeds must be used in one of 13 very specific categories that promote the specific RAAP redevelopment.

10. What is the difference between Riverbank's LRA and the RDA?

There are two types of redevelopment agencies; one is authorized by the State of California known as ‘Redevelopment Agency’ or RDA; and the second is authorized by the Federal Government known as Local Redevelopment Authority’ or LRA.


In April 2006, the LRA was formally recognized by the Department of Defense and currently exists. The RDA was dissolved by the State of California in February 2012.


The Riverbank City Council serves as the LRA Board of Directors and holds separate meetings, keeps separate budgets and has separate staff members.  The LRA was charged with the authority for making all reuse and disposal decisions for the former Riverbank Army Ammunition Plant or RAAP.