The city of Fairfield has contracted with Patriot Engineering and Enviornmental to clean up a former gas station on Ohio 4. FILE
Photo: Jim Witmer
Photo: Jim Witmer

Former Fairfield gas station site to get $300K cleanup before redevelopment

Property owner Mo Hamed purchased 5852 Dixie Highway through an estate sale, but development options are restricted, said Alex Kraemer, Fairfield’s economic development manager.

“Mr. Hamed has expressed interest in redeveloping the site, but his options right now are limited due to the current extent of the environmental conditions,” he said. Hamed’s current tenant on the site is Weaver Barns.

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Fairfield City Council approved last month submitting an application for an Abandoned Gas Station Cleanup Program grant and contracted Patriot Engineering and Environmental to clean up the site.

The Abandoned Gas Station Cleanup Grant Program was established by the General Assembly to provide for and enable the environmentally safe and productive reuse of property.

“The goal of this program is to identify and address conditions that inhibit environmentally sound or economic re-usability of sites,” according to the Ohio Department of Development.

The city attempted to clean up the site in September 2017, which included removing storage tanks and cleaning hazardous substances, butKraemer said that attempt failed “due to the state of Ohio pursing what it deemed at the time was the responsible party.” The Bureau of Underground Storage Tank Regulation OK’d for the storage tanks to be removed because the state agency “ultimately determined there’s no viable party to compel to conduct corrective action on the site.”

The city will pay $300,000 for the contract with Patriot but will be reimbursed by the state program.

“In order to get the money, a local jurisdiction has to be the applicant, but we are more or less a pass-through agency,” said City Manager Mark Wendling.

Patriot has assisted several public entities in obtaining these program funds, and cleanup also includes possibly demolishing the existing canopy on the property, Kraemer said

The site would be prohibited from being used as a gas station, according to the program.

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