Hamilton city council has voted to take ownership of a property contaminated with toxic waste. The city is owed about $380 000 by the owner for years of unpaid taxes and for the cleanup.
The abandoned property at 249 Hess has failed to sell at tax sale three times since 2005. The owner stopped paying taxes in the early 90’s and since then hundreds of barrels of toxic waste were discovered on the former asphault plant site. About 50 of them were dumped by vandals last year and now the city is footing the estimated $170 000 bill to clean it up.
The recommendation is not to sell the remediated land right away but to group it with other properties the city owns in the Barton Tiffany area acquired by the city when it was planning to build the new stadium there. The property is adjacent to Barton street where the city wants to see 1100 new residential units.
As for the money owed to the city…
“Obviously if you’re not selling the property right now then it’s a tough time to recover that but sometime down the road, we are not going to be the developers of that property, someone else will be and there’s a value to that property. So hopefully we will recover that and then some in terms of value.” Fred Eisenberger, Hamilton mayor.
The removal of the remainder of the toxic waste is slated to begin next Thursday.