Columbiana Receives $250,000 for Gas Station Cleanup

COLUMBIANA, Ohio — A $250,000 state grant will be put toward cleanup efforts of the former Chet’s Service Station at 31 East Park Ave.

During its Monday meeting, the state controlling board approved the funds through the Abandoned Gas Station Cleanup Grant program, which provides funding to assess and cleanup BUSTR Class C sites – sites with underground storage tanks with documented petroleum releases.

The grant will fund removal of the underground storage tanks, as well as hydraulic lift removal, first- and second-tier assessments and soil/groundwater remediation, according to controlling board documents.

Chet’s Service Station was closed a few years ago when the owner died and the property went to sheriff’s sale, said Lance Willard, Columbiana city manager. The current owner is working with the Columbiana County Land Reutilization Corp. to get the site cleaned up and put into use.

“The long-term goal is once it’s cleaned up, the site will become a vibrant business for our downtown,” Willard says.

The demolition and site remediation process, which includes removal of the tanks, should only take about a week, says Haedan Panezott, executive director of the Columbiana County Land Reutilization Corp. Tanks to be removed include three 3,000-gallon underground storage tanks, one 2,000-gallon underground tank likely used for diesel fuel, and a 250-gallon above-ground tank, Panezott says.

Also to be removed are two hydraulic lifts, fuel dispensers and piping, he notes. Work will begin within a month.

After the tanks have been removed, soil sampling and horizontal and vertical well monitoring will be conducted to determine what pollutants, if any, are present and to what extent, he says. That can take six to eight months. Once that is done, the site will be refilled. The existing building will remain.

“We are not tearing down the building,” Panezott says. “Our end user in place has plans to repurpose the building once the project is complete.”

All told, the cleanup project could take 18 months to two years.

This is the second Ohio Development Services Agency grant the county has been awarded this year. Another $250,000 grant was used to remediate a former gas station property in Salineville, Panezott says.

Pictured: The former Chet’s Service Station at 31 East Park Ave. is being remediated to put the property back into productive use.

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