A St. Louis-based commercial real estate firm and its affiliate have acquired the Lawrenceburg site that is being considered as a potential location for Indiana’s fourth port. Commercial Development Co. Inc. plans to prepare the former Tanners Creek coal plant for future "productive use."
CDC, along with affiliate Environmental Liability Transfer Inc., says the 725-acre site continues to be evaluated by the Ports of Indiana as a logistically-viable location for a fourth port. The company says it has assumed responsibility for environmental liabilities associated with the site.
Another CDC affiliate, EnviroAnalytics Group, is set to begin several remediation projects, including soil and groundwater remediation, asbestos abatement, ash pond closure, environmental monitoring and demolition of most of the existing structures at the site. The company says these projects are expected to take three to five years to complete.
"CDC has tremendous experience with redevelopment and remediation projects, which coupled with our team’s maritime and logistical expertise, creates a unique opportunity to pursue development of a port at this location," said Rich Cooper, chief executive officer of the Ports of Indiana. "It’s too early to say what can be constructed here, but we’re excited to have the exclusive right to further investigate this site with CDC."
Cooper says he has already received inquiries from companies that are interested in potentially locating at or shipping products to the site, which he says is encouraging for future development. When it was announced earlier this month that the Tanners Creek location was being considered for a fourth port, Cooper said the former plant was a "favorable site" among others that have been evaluated.
CDC and ELT acquired the site from Indiana Michigan Power, which operated the plant from 1951 until it was retired in 2015.
"We consider this site in Lawrenceburg to be a tremendous opportunity for new development, and we are very excited to see the economic and environmental benefits this transaction brings to the tri-state area," said Doug Willett, executive vice president at Environmental Liability Transfer. "Our acquisition and environmental liability assumption of this strategically-located site is the first step toward repurposing this property and returning it to productive use."