The city’s board of control approved a $49,412 payment to MS Consultants for designs and plans to remove asbestos and demolish two former Wick Avenue car-dealership properties.
The plan should be done by the Youngstown company in 30 to 60 days, said Abigail Beniston, the city’s code enforcement and blight remediation superintendent. The board approved the contract Thursday.
The properties are the former State Chevrolet, between Olive Street and Strausbaugh Avenue, and the former Barrett Cadillac, between Linden Avenue and Sycamore Street.
The two were among a group of new-car dealerships known as the Wick Six. As the area deteriorated, the dealerships left with the last one closing in the early 1990s.
The city took ownership at no cost of the State and Barrett properties, leasing them to other businesses over the years, but they now are vacant.
MS already received $33,896 for testing to determine the amount of hazardous materials on the properties. No underground tanks containing hazardous materials were found, but there is asbestos in the buildings, Beniston said.
MS will provide an estimate for the abatement and demolition work, but city officials say it should cost about $600,000 to $700,000.
The city received approval from the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency to use wastewater money to pay for the project, Beniston said.
The city faced an $88,000 fine from the EPA for emission violations at its wastewater plant, and received approval to use that money and up to $500,000 in total wastewater funds for the Wick project.
The five violations are from 2010 to 2014.
Three violations were for failing to conduct timely emissions tests at its Poland Avenue wastewater treatment plant. The other two were for emitting higher-than-permitted pollution from the burning of human waste and other waste at the plant, and releasing it into the air through the facility’s smokestacks, according to a June 23, 2014, letter from EPA Director Craig W. Butler to Thomas Mirante, the city’s wastewater treatment superintendent.
The plant currently is in compliance.
Originally published by the Youngstown Vindicator and written by David Skolnick.