Workers have begun preliminary work aimed at demolishing the former Tom’s Mobil gas station site on South Main Street.
Residents and business owners may have noticed city trucks parked at the site on Tuesday and crews on top of the canopy at the vacant structure.
City Manager John Goodwin said step one is removing sheet metal on the canopy — and heavier equipment is expected to be needed.
But further action depends on what a pre-demolition survey reveals in the way of overall asbestos and/or hazardous cleanup of the site.
City Council on Thursday night will consider spending $30,000 for costs associated with the cleanup and demolition. Council also may vote on paying $2,500 for the survey to Rochester-based AEG Environmental Group.
“We’re looking to run as fast as we can to turn this from a blight into an asset,” Goodwin said.
The city and state Environmental Protection and Spill Compensation Fund reached an agreement for the cleanup of the 20,700-square-foot site at the corner of South Main and Saltonstall streets.
The state fund is responsible for the $350,000 cleanup while the city is responsible for up to $60,000 of the building’s demolition. The two entities would evenly split proceeds from the sale of the property, with the city and future owner released from liability related to the contamination, which was caused by an underground fuel storage tank leak.
Taxes on the property had not been paid since 2011, although because of the cost of the cleanup involved the city was reluctant to take it over.