By DENISE GRANT
A 58-acre tract of land on Findlay’s north side, now considered a brownfield, is about to get a closer look by environmental experts.
Hancock County’s commissioners have approved a detailed environmental assessment of the site, using money from a $1 million Brownfield Assessment Coalition Grant awarded to the county in 2010.
Brownfield properties can include abandoned gas stations, old textile mills, closed smelters, and other former industrial and commercial properties.
The property, once a Marathon bulk petroleum storage center, is located on the south side of Allen Township 100, between Interstate 75 and North Main Street.
Its owner, Dr. David Yu Shen Lai, is interested in developing the land. The property is currently overgrown with weeds and brush, and is forested on the east side.
An initial study of the property by TTL Associates, Toledo, identified former bulk petroleum above-ground storage tanks and 10 oil wells on the site.
TTL Associates was paid $50,000 to evaluate the history of the property. The company will now be paid $110,000 to determine if soil and water on the property are contaminated.
With its proximity to Interstate 75 and Hancock County 99, it is a “pretty nice site” to develop, according to Tony Iriti, economic development director for the Findlay-Hancock County Alliance.
“That’s really the intent of the grant, to find out exactly what is there and what is not there on property with a good potential to be redeveloped,” Iriti said.
The grant came from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and is nearly spent.
It has paid for the environmental assessment of several properties, including the sites of these former businesses: Imperial House Motel on Findlay’s West Main Cross Street; Clark gas station, 892 N. Countyline St., Fostoria; the former RCA plant at 1700 Fostoria Ave., Findlay; Mr. B’s dry cleaning, 113 W. South St., Fostoria; Central Rubber building, 433 W. Main Cross St., Findlay; and a salvage yard at 3333 Hancock County 140, Van Buren.
Also assessed were Heuerman’s, 120 N. Main St., Findlay; and Portage Park, Perrysburg Road, Fostoria.
Several acres along Crystal, Melrose and Trenton avenues, owned by C. Randolph Strauch, also are on the list.
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