SIDNEY — The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is set to begin an emergency removal of hazardous materials at the former Wagner Ware Manufacturing building located at 440 Fair Road at the end of July.
The removal action is “tentatively” scheduled to begin the week of July 25, 2016, and is estimated to take six to 10 weeks for completion, said Community Services Director Barbara Dulworth. The work will be fully funded by the EPA.
The Wagner Ware site originally was the former foundry of the Wagner Manufacturing Company that produced cast iron and aluminum products by until 1952. The building had several owners until the metal finishing manufacturer Master Vision Polishing closed the location in 2008.
Prior to Master Vision Polishing pulling out in 2008, Dulworth said there were already issues with the poor condition of the building. Afterward, it continued to deteriorate from neglect and vandalism.
On Aug. 27, 2015, the EPA investigated the abandoned facility after receiving a citizen complaint of “leaking transformers.” During the inspection, there was evidence of “frequent trespassing with broken windows, doors and vandalism to an outdoor transformer area.” In the EPA report, there was documentation of abandoned chemical waste and a “determination of an imminent and substantial threat to public health, welfare and the environment, by the presence of uncontrolled hazardous substances.” The cost of the removal action project is $658,025.
Dulworth said it has been the city’s goal to find funds to demolish the building for some time. She said there are several grants available to help with funding through the Federal and Ohio EPA, but the “major barrier” for the city is the requirement to have an end-user for the land.
“Finding an end-user for this particular property is not easy,” said Dulworth. “It is not suitable for industrial use — or residential use because it backs up to the railroad.”
Reach the writer at 937-538-4823.