Project Partners

Value Recovery Group II LLC, Value Recovery Group Inc, P&L Investments, Performance Site Management

Background

  • The former Claycraft Brick Company had mined an adjacent area for clay and shale for its raw materials in brick manufacturing. The resulting hole was converted to a landfill by the company owners.

  • The landfill occupied the site and operated for 25 years, accepting 10 million cubic yards of municipal waste, which joined previously abandoned piles of bricks and clay, and exposed trash. The property became distressed and unproductive, with tax liens and other contingencies accumulating over time.  Ultimately, the state and local community came to an impasse. An unrelated company controlled the methane gas accumulation and sale via a local pipeline.

  • The high cost of remediation frightened developers and no one was willing to take on the risk, as it took over $2 million just to clear the liens.  The surrounding parcels were not developing due to their proximity to the landfill, and multiple adjoining owners complicated any ability to do a land assembly.  The landfill parcel was not developable and was 84 feet deep in many areas.

  • VRG stepped in and developed a creative solution that addressed all of the financial challenges associated with redeveloping the landfill and surrounding land.  This solution included securing a $3 million Clean Ohio Revitalization Fund grant (the first time this grant was awarded in Ohio for the remediation and closure of a registered solid waste landfill.

  • VRG performed all of the transactional, legal, remediation and infrastructure work with the oversight of the COCIC and cooperation from the City of Gahanna.

  • VRG secured public funding to demolish a 75,000 square foot dilapidated brick factory, crushed the bricks and recycled the materials for use on the site, capped the site with 200,000 cubic feet of clay that had remained on the site, secured a $2.1 million loan to build a golf course on the site, and proudly manages the resulting Golf Depot at Central Park; a Hurdzan Golf Architect’s designed championship 9-Hole play, practice and learning center.

  • VRG secured No Further Action status and closure certificate from the Ohio EPA in 2008. This resolved any and all environmental liabilities for Franklin County, Ohio and City of Gahanna, Ohio as a result of the municipality’s actions at this landfill.

Challenges & Solutions

  • Assisting Franklin County with isolating the landfill liability into a non-profit through creation of a “community improvement corporation”.

  • Utilized insurance products to cap landfill liability for County and Municipal governments, the first time the Ohio EPA had accepted a capping of amount and tenure of liability.

  • Obtained government grants at Federal, State, and Municipal levels, supplementing funding with private equity and loans.

  • Closed the landfill with a clay cap and installed a new methane gas collection system on 16 acres.

  • Managed the construction of a 9-hole golf course, driving range, and practice area.

  • Moved a train depot 50 miles and reconstructed the depot into a clubhouse with a full service restaurant, golf office, and a golf fitting studio.

  • Assembled and purchased 100 acres of land adjacent to the landfill to create a Wide Area Development, bringing access to a landlocked and formerly distressed area.

  • Obtained funding through State, City, and VRG for building Techcenter Drive for access to the site, including walking paths and improvements to Science Blvd.

  • Obtained $1 million in funding from the State of Ohio for the City of Gahanna to purchase ravine property for preservation of this conservation area.

  • Worked with Franklin County to issue bonds to take-out bank financing and additional costs of golf course construction.

  • Selected a golf operator through an RFP process and assisted the COCIC in contracting with operator.

  • Obtained a Covenant not to Sue (CNS) on adjacent non-landfill property.

  • Purchased and operated a storage unit facility for 4 years to protect a key location to the development. The storage units were then demolished and replaced with a residential hotel.

Summary & Results

The Central Ohio National Association of Industrial and Office Properties (NAIOP) presented the team and this project with the coveted award, “Most Creative Deal Structure” for our creativity in designing the public-private structure used to facilitate the remediation and redevelopment.