Cleanup efforts for a longtime eyesore in downtown Richmond are set to receive a boost. The Indiana Finance Authority says a $500,000 federal grant will be set aside to loan to the Wayne County city for contamination cleanup at the former Reid Memorial Hospital site.
The site is currently owned by out-of-state investors who have let the property languish for years. It closed in 2008 and has changed owners multiple times. Various redevelopment plans have fallen flat and the IFA says demolition and brownfield remediation estimates have been pegged at $6 million. The property includes six parcels on 74 acres. Its location is considered a key to downtown redevelopment.
Contamination issues linked to the site include arsenic, chromium, lead, thallium, Aroclor 1232, petroleum aromatic hydrocarbons, dioxin, lithium and radionuclides in soil and potentially ground water.
The authority says the Revolving Loan Funds will help the city begin remediation, which could include more than $1 million just to take care of asbestos.
Richmond Department of Metropolitan Development Executive Director Tony Foster expressed says "the City of Richmond is excited to work with the Indiana Finance Authority Brownfields Program to clean up the former Reid Hospital property. We have been working with previous owners of the property and the Indiana Brownfields Program has been an asset to our efforts. We are excited to be able to begin cleanup at another brownfield site in Richmond."