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Alpha Portland project hits new delay

 

Demolition work on the former Alpha Portland Cement Co. has been postponed again.

“All bids came in a little bit more than the money they had allotted,” Commission President Les Boggs said during Thursday’s commission meeting.

Originally scheduled to go to bid at the end of December, the project is an environmental remediation with the removal of asbestos and demolition of the remaining structures of the plant. Keramida of Indianapolis is the environmental consultant.

“There was more asbestos to be removed than expected,” Boggs sad. “They are taking the two lowest bidders to try to work with them to get the cost in line.”

The acreage, off Hog Run Road, was once the site of the Ironton Portland Cement Co. that opened in the 1800s. When the brown field is remediated, the plan is for Marietta Industrial Enterprise, a material handling company, to construct a 30,000-square foot distribution warehouse on the site.

A side benefit to the project could come with the possible relocation of Hog Run Road.

“One of the options is for the landowner to take a lot of the concrete rubble and build a road 100 feet to the north of the existing Hog Run Road,” County Engineer Doug Cade.

After the construction the county would take over ownership of that new road, Cade said.

“Currently it is the first road to be closed when there is high water,” Cade said. “Historically it can be seven to 14 feet over the top of that road from backwater from the Ohio River. This will elevate the road several feet higher than the current roadway.”

Cade also reported that bids are scheduled to be opened on May 10 for the replacement of the bridge at Lawrence Street. Construction should start this summer on the bridge and elevation of the roadway by five feet.

The county’s portion of the project to be administered by the Ohio Department of Transportation is approximately $165,000. About $78,000 will come from an ODOT grant through the newly created Transportation Improvement District. The remainder of the county’s portion will come from the county’s Motor Vehicle Gas Tax. The county will pay 20 percent of the cost with the rest from Federal Highway Administration funds.

In other action the commissioners:

• Approved applying for Community Development Block grants for the expansion of Intermountain Electronics Inc. at The Point industrial park;

• Awarded contracts for material for the county road department to Marathon Petroleum, Waterloo Coal Co. and Rolo Sand and Gravel;

• Approved demolition of blighted sites in Waterloo and Chesapeake;

• Received notice from sheriff on fire drill conducted on Tuesday.