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Orleans EDA may put Albion Business Park on market

Photo by Tom Rivers: The Orleans Community Health facility at the corner of Butts Road and Route 31 is the only building in the Albion Business Park. The business park has several wetlands that make the site tricky to develop.

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 9 September 2017 at 5:12 pm

Wetlands at site are a challenge for development

ALBION – The Orleans Economic Development Agency was looking for prime vacant land with access to water and sewer infrastructure in Albion about 15 years ago.

The agency acquired about 20 acres at the corner of Butts Road and Route 31 for $75,000.

Five years ago, Orleans Community Health (Medina Memorial Hospital) built a new health care site on the corner lot. OCH paid the EDA $36,000 for the land.

The rest of the site has proven a challenge to develop. The site has several wetlands. Some of the land that is a designated wetland would have to be relocated to make room for more projects at the site, Jim Whipple, the Orleans EDA chief executive officer, said during Friday’s board meeting.

Relocating wetlands becomes costly and time consuming. That has the EDA thinking it might be better to put the land up for sale. Whipple said the land might appeal to someone for a new house.

Otherwise, it might be a tough sell to entice a business or manufacturer.

“It’s a lot wetter than we thought,” said Ken DeRoller, an EDA board member.

Another board member, Carol D’Agostino, said the site hasn’t been fruitless for the agency or community.

“You were able to put in urgent care which has been a great asset to the community,” D’Agostino said.

Paul Hendel, the EDA board chairman, urged the board members to think about the land with the discussion to resume at next month’s meeting.

There might be other options for business development in Albion, including the Route 98 corridor, just south of the village, EDA officials said.

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