Kent recieves grant to revitalize Ametek building

Kent State is looking into turning the old Ametek Industrial Products site into a research and technology park.

A report submitted to the state Controlling Board includes the university’s interest in purchasing the site once repairs are made to the property.

The Clean Ohio Fund freed up $244,870 to make the property useful to Kent again.

At one time, 1,000 residents were employed at the industrial grounds at 627 Lake St., said Dan Smith economic development director for the city.

Ametek has owned the site for 14 years, but only use it as offices. Only about 100 people are currently employed at the site.

The 91-year-old property has a long industrial history in Kent.

Mason Cotton Fabrics owned the building first in 1919.

Ten years later, ownership of the site transferred to Lamb Electric, which made shell cases and electric motors during World War II. Lamb Electric became Ametek in 1997, according to the Phase two application. Ametek stopped production in 2009.

“Ametek has been a presence in Kent for a long time and we wanted to keep them here,” Smith said. “ About a year ago we got together and started looking for a solution.

The solution turned out to be the Clean Ohio Fund Brownfield program.

The funds officially released by the state on Sep. 13, 2010, will allow the second phase to begin on the 14 acres.

“Phase two will show what needs to be cleaned up and how to clean it up,” Amy Alduino, brownfield coordinator for the Ohio department of development.

Phase one determined there are contaminants on the property and qualified Kent to receive assistance.

Ametek plans to relocate to the new offices the city intends to build as part of the downtown development project.

Once the site is no longer contaminated, an organization, like Kent State can move in a optimize the space, Smith said.