A tire recycling firm is no longer looking to open in a vacant Fairchild Avenue industrial facility.
Pittsburgh-based Liberty Tire Recycling has pulled a proposal given to the city of Kent's planning department to open a tire reclamation facility at 1440 Fairchild Ave., the former home of Fontaine Trailer Co.
The firm's plans for the site were set to go to the Kent Planning Commission in November, but the tire recycler asked for a postponement until December. The company scrapped the proposal altogether around the end of the year.
Kent Community Development Department Director Gary Locke said the company struggled somewhat to meet some technical requirements for opening the recycling operation.
Locke said the firm initially proposed no outside storage of shredded or whole tires, but in later talks with the city Liberty Tire said they planned to have some outside storage. He said the adjacent neighborhoods also expressed concerns about the operation being so close to some homes.
Liberty operates two plants in Ohio. The Pittsburgh company was founded in 2000 and employs more than 1,100 people, according to the firm's website.
The reclaimed, shredded rubber produced by Liberty Tire is used as a crumb rubber and industrial feedstock for molded products, according to the company's website. It's also used as fuel in industrial kilns, in mills and power plants and as rubber mulch for playgrounds and landscaping.
Kent Economic Development Director Dan Smith said the company was not completely forthright in outlining its operations to the city and neighboring residents. That made it difficult for the city to support the project despite the fact it would have created jobs in Kent, Smith said.
Locke said the city remains in talks with the landowner, as the property is a valuable piece of industrial land that can be reused in Kent.