The city will likely buy the AMETEK property at 627 Lake St. for $106,000 as part of the deal that moves the firm's approximately 80 employees into the downtown redevelopment project.
City administrators will take the idea to members of Wednesday for discussion. The idea is likely to gain approval, as several council members have expressed support for the purchase. And a draft 12-page purchase agreement for the property came about after a 90-minute closed-door discussion of the idea by council members two weeks ago.
A price tag of $106,000 seems like a steal for the 288,000-square-foot complex on almost 15 acres with rail access. The land is valued at $2 million by the Portage County Auditor's Office for tax purposes. But the city becomes responsible for any contaminants on the site, which has served industrial manufacturing for almost 100 years.
"We think it's a very manageable risk," Dave Ruller said.
The land has been through both phase one and phase two environmental studies under the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency Volunteer Action Program.
Based on the studies, the city expects it will only have to pay a few hundred thousand dollars to clean up any remaining contaminants in the property's soil. And the city plans to apply for Clean Ohio Revitalization Fund money to help pay for any necessary cleanup.
Ruller said the city already has $500,000 set aside to cover any local matches required as part of a Clean Ohio grant fund award.
And under the draft purchase agreement, AMETEK would have to discuss ways to address the work if estimates for the city's cleanup costs exceed $500,000.
"We have no reason to believe that's the case," Ruller said.
If approved by council, the city will take ownership of the AMETEK property once the company moves into its new space in the downtown redevelopment project.