Grant Helps Pay for Pottstown Plating Site Clean-Up

POTTSTOWN PA – A state Industrial Sites Reuse Program grant of $467,636 will help pay for environmental clean-up work at the former Pottstown Plating Works property, 215 S. Washington St., the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development reported Thursday (Aug. 25, 2022).

Its grant was presented to the Montgomery County Redevelopment Authority for remediation of the site. Pennsylvania’s reuse program is specifically targeted to help property owners who attempt to solve pollution problems they did not create. The work there began several years ago and is anticipated to result in uses for light manufacturing, warehousing and distribution, and general small businesses (at top).

The grant award comes slightly more than a month after the county Board of Commissioners agreed to waive collection of thousands of dollars in back taxes owed over roughly a decade by a former owner. Lifting that tax burden, which follows similar moves by the borough and school district, eliminates additional costs that also did not occur under the new ownership.

The property has been vacant since 2009. The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection said it was contaminated (below) with arsenic, cadmium, nickel, and industrial and dry-cleaning solvents. Remediation activities include capping a section of the property to prevent contact with contaminated soils, installation of a vapor barrier system, and renovation to accommodate new businesses.

County Eliminates Back Taxes on Plating Works Site
The former Pottstown Plating Works property as it appeared during June 2020

State Rep. Joe Ciresi said the grant represented “a perfect example of good government investment working for people.”

“For Pottstown to reach its full economic potential of providing jobs and family-sustaining wages to its residents, we must look for new ways to creatively re-use our legacy industrial buildings,” Ciresi said. “The new owners of Pottstown Plating Works have a solid plan (at top) for bringing this building back to productive use.”

Rendering of the proposed property renovation provided by Pottstown Area Economic Development
Photo by The Post