Council looks for grant to clean up Ametek

Anthony White

Kent City Council voted unanimously to take control of the Ametek property at 627 Lake St. Wednesday.

This motion allows the city to submit a Clean Ohio grant application to Gov. John Kasich. The grant would give the city $1.45 million to clean up the property and allow for a new company to move into the property. The Kent administration needed to act quickly as the deadline to submit the application was today.

“We believe this will be the last round of Clean Ohio grants that the governor will be issuing,” said James Silver, law director for city council. “This is a very undeveloped piece of land…Once cleaned, we will look to receive higher grades from the state environmental board,” he said.

Mayor Jerry Fiala recognizes the high cost of cleaning the Ametek property but believes it will benefit the city financially in the long run.

“The plan is to take over the land, clean it and bring in someone new to straighten out the property,” he said. “If we can get this property flourishing again, we can increase our tax base, which in turn increases our revenue.”

The vote helps to speed up the application process to receive funds to clean up the Ametek property and enables the administration to submit their application. The property is on a 15-acre, 288,000-square-foot piece of land. It has already been through two environmental studies under the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency.

“The Ametek property is on a large piece of land,” said Garret Ferrara, ward one councilman. “By controlling the land, it gives us more options on what and how we handle this.” “It also increases the offer we can make to potential businesses after we clean up,” he said.

Fairmount Properties is the lead developer of the Ametek complex and has a $25 million investment in the land. In April, Kent City Council approved the city to purchase the Ametek building and the property. Ametek recently relocated to its new downtown office. There are $20 million of Clean Ohio funds available for allocation from the state.

In November, the Ohio Department of Development awarded Kent $1.34 million to remediate the former RB&W property. The city hopes to receive one of these last grants from the state to do the same with the Ametek property.

Contact Anthony White at [email protected].