Highland County Landbank Board Holds Second Tender Opening for Building Demolition and Site Revitalization Plots

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At a special meeting Monday morning, representatives from the Highland County Land Reutilization Corporation opened bids for 19 properties slated for demolition and cleanup using $500,000 in state grants.

As previously reported, the office of Ohio Governor Mike DeWine announced on July 1 that the HCLRC had received its full $500,000 funding for the building demolition and site revitalization program. Landbank coordinator Mackenzie Edison said in July the funding would cover the 26 Highland County properties they submitted in their application, including 18 properties in Hillsboro, five in Mowrystown and three in Lynchburg.

This list was eventually narrowed down to 19 properties, after the HCLRC voted to remove seven plots from the original list due to not obtaining memorandums of understanding from the owners.

There were six different bundles of offers, with parcels arranged geographically. These included the following:

• Bid #1, three properties (one on East South Street and two on Johnson Street in Hillsboro). This package received the following total bids: Brandon Vance Excavating, $28,000; AK Excavation, $29,000; Dance Digs, $41,000; Construction of banks, $45,500; Evans Landscaping, $50,000; and rock bottom construction, $69,800.

• Bid #2, four properties (two on East Walnut Street, one on Hill Street and one on East Main Street in Hillsboro). The HCLRC received the total bids, including: Brandon Vance Excavating, $29,100; AK excavation, $35,000; JWM excavation, $39,782; Construction of banks, $45,300; Dance Digs, $52,500; Evans Landscaping, $69,000; and rock bottom construction, $86,900.

• Bid #3, three properties (one on South East Street and two on Wellston Street in Hillsboro). Landbank offers for this lot include: JWM Excavating, $19,300; Brandon Vance excavation, $22,300; Construction of banks, $23,500; AK excavation, $30,000; Dance Excavation, also $30,000; Evans Landscaping, $53,500; and rock bottom construction, $60,200.

• Tender File #4, one property (a barn on State Route 73 in Hillsboro). Deals included: Dance Excavation, $9,500; AK excavation, $15,000; Brandon Vance Excavation, $20,000; Rock-bottom construction, $20,300; Construction of banks, $21,300; and Evans Landscaping, $26,500.

• Tender File #5, five properties (two on North High Street, two on Maple Street and one on Main Street in Mowrystown). Bids received included: Banks Construction, $38,100; AK excavation, $40,000; Brandon Vance excavation, $41,600; Evans Landscaping, $84,000; and rock bottom construction, $104,100.

• Application File #6, three properties (one on Broadway Street, one East Short Street and one South Sycamore Street in Lynchburg). Bids received included total estimates of: AK Excavation, $47,000; Evans Landscaping, $54,000; Rock-bottom construction, $66,300; and Construction of banks, $74,100.

This was the second time that a bid opening for this project had taken place, with the HCLRC receiving bids from seven contractors on both occasions.

As previously reported, the first bid opening took place at a special meeting on July 29, with the board holding an emergency meeting on August 4 and voting to renew the bid after reviewing some of the verbiage. and removed properties for which they had not obtained memorandums of understanding.

On August 18, for the second time in two weeks, members of the land bank’s board of directors voted to revise the nomination papers. Edison said the contractors collecting the new packages shared “concerns” about the wording of the packages regarding asbestos testing and reduction. The land bank board determined that the land bank should cover the cost of asbestos testing and voted to change the wording of the tender documents, advising Edison to tell contractors who have already picked up packets to “ignore this part” if they don’t. ‘t take another new package.

According to Highland County Commissioner Jeff Duncan, who thanked all contractors for their proposals, all bids submitted will be reviewed by Edison. Council may be ready to vote at its next meeting, set for September 15 at 9 a.m. at the Highland County Administration Building.

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