Clarksburg Urban Renewal Authority to Fund Demolition of Dozens of Structures

From the Exponent Telegram  

11/2/2017

The Clarksburg Urban Renewal Authority approved seven demolition and asbestos abatement contracts Thursday morning.

The contracts are part of the city’s $400,000 demolition program to address more than 80 structures designated as “slums or blights” throughout Clarksburg.

Clarksburg City Manager Martin Howe and code enforcement officials will enter into the contracts with the Urban Renewal Authority, which is the entity responsible for obtaining the program’s financing.

The authority secured the funds through a loan from the MVB Bank.

The authority awarded four bid contracts, comprising 15 structures, that include asbestos abatement, demolition and asbestos abatement and demolition.

The authority also awarded three contracts that consist of 33 structures for asbestos abatement only, Howe said.

“The city will be razing approximately 24 structures with our own public works crews, of which some of those were included in the abatement. Asbestos must be abated by a licensed professional before the city can tear down the structures,” he said.

The approved contracts follow:

— Contract 1, abatement and demolition, awarded to Reclaim Company LLC, Fairmont, $48,075.

— Contract 2, demolition, awarded to Anderson Excavating LLC, Morgantown, $39,770.

— Contract 3, demolition, awarded to Reclaim, $35,100.

— Contract 4, abatement and demolition, Reclaim, $18,250.

— Contract 5 and 7, abatement only, Safeco Environmental Services, Pennsylvania, $25,675 and $49,720, respectively.

— Contract 6, abatement only, Anderson, $35,150.

Clarksburg City Council, during its Thursday night meeting, approved resolutions needed to move the demolition program forward after several years of planning.

Council approved and awarded a contract bid by the city in the amount of $49,325 to Reclaim. Those funds are from the Tax Increment Financing District for four structures, Howe said.

Clarksburg Assistant City Manager Anthony Bellotte said the program consists of a mixture of abatement and demolition work.

“Abatement is the assessment for any environmental issues. Abatement is the removal of environment issues, mainly asbestos,” Bellotte said.

The demolition program is ongoing. The Urban Renewal Authority has additional funds remaining.

“The city administration will now be developing additional bid packages to advertise with various structures to utilize the remaining funds,” Howe said.

He said the first phase should be complete in February.

“We have to have contract signings in the next week or so. The companies are required by law to supply a 10-day notification to the (state Department of Environmental Protection) regarding the demolitions. They typically have 90 days to complete the contract,” he said.

Cleaning up dilapidated structures is a priority for Clarksburg officials.

“This is very important, as evidenced by an Wednesday night fire on Lee Avenue,” Howe said. “The vacant properties attract nuisances. Some are very unsightly. The properties are ignored and decrease property values to the neighborhoods, and they become a place for trespassing.”

Mayor Cathy Goings agreed.

“I think it is imperative that we get back on track and get rid of these properties. Not only are most of them a health and safety issue, but they entice vagrants and drug activity,” she said.