Final tasks are underway at the Port’s 11-acre Lower Mill redevelopment project, an industrial property the Port has worked to clean up, improve, and ready for development for close to five years. The completion of Lower Mill industrial park returns the former mill site to productive use by the private sector with the creation of four shovel-ready, buildable M-1 industrial-zoned lots.
The original nine acres adjacent to Highway 35 in Odell were purchased in July 2015, and acquisition of neighboring property brought the site up to more than 11 acres.
As final roadwork nears completion and access aprons are paved, the Port is in contract negotiations for two of three available parcels, with a fourth parcel potentially available after pending wetland mitigation activities conclude. Parcels range from 1.4 acres to 4.86 acres.
The final tasks followed lengthy, and at times complicated processes to convert the site to development-ready parcels, including:
• clean-up and analysis of the Brownfield site
• excavation, materials sorting and stockpiling of wood waste and debris
• utilities installation: three-phase electric power, fiber optic cable, high-pressure natural gas line, sewer and water
• installation of a new off site, main water supply line for Crystal Springs Water District, to replace an existing under-sized water line to supply sufficient fire flow pressures for future buildings
• appropriate mitigation for the small, isolated wetland
A .86-acre wetland exists on Lot 902, and the Port explored alternatives to mitigate the environmental impact. The State approved a payment-in-lieu wetland fill permit. This permit is part of the Oregon Department of State Lands (DSL) wetland program that allows eligible property owners to pay an amount equal to mitigation costs into a DSL account. DSL then identifies projects and carries out the mitigation. “Once the permit is in hand in early May, the Port will finalize grading and wetland fill on the large five-acre lot,” explained Port Development Manager Anne Medenbach, who has administered the project for the Port.
The Port moved the remaining 20,000 cubic yards of fill material from the site to areas near the Ken Jernstedt Airfield in February. The stockpile was the result of wood and soil material excavated and tested during the 2016 clean-up phase of the project. Clean-up of the site was funded in part by $200,000 grant from the Oregon Brownfields Cleanup program in partnership with the Environmental Protection Agency, State Department of Environmental Quality, and Business Oregon. A grant for $60,000 was received by Oregon Business Development Dept. for Lower Mill Environmental Remediation.