Canal Authority completes purchase of Sibley Mill

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The Augusta Canal Authority completed its planned purchase Tuesday of the historic Sibley Mill, along with its hydropower plant, outbuildings and 20 acres.

"We are officially closed on the purchase of the Sibley Mill," said Dayton Sherrouse, the authority's executive director.

The authority agreed in February to buy the 518,000-square-foot textile mill for $800,000, pending a series of environmental studies.

Under the terms of the sale, the previous owner -- Avondale Mills -- had given the authority 120 days to determine whether there were any structural or contamination issues that had not been identified in previous assessments conducted by the owners and later by Augusta businessman Clay Boardman, who at one time planned to buy the site.

The primary issues identified in all three studies were typical of large, old industrial buildings, Sherrouse said.

"It was mainly lead paint and asbestos inside the building and some lead and mercury and cadmium in soil, for which there would be some remediation to be required," he said.

The authority can now move forward with evaluating future uses for the building.

Eventual plans include marketing the site for redevelopment. Possible uses could include a blend of residential, professional and commercial -- similar to the nearby Enterprise Mill, which was successfully renovated a decade ago.

In 2001, the canal authority purchased Sibley's next-door neighbor, King Mill, for $250,000. The authority then leased the building to a new operator, Ohio-based Standard Textile, which has kept it open as an active manufacturer and employer.

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floridasun 08/31/10 - 08:08 pm
The Sibley Mill is an iconic

The Sibley Mill is an iconic Augusta landmark that can hopefully be saved like the Enterprise Mill and Sutherland Mill.
This is good news for the Canal Authority to "hold" the mill until a re-developer can be found.

Indigo 08/31/10 - 09:16 pm
The ACA will give it to Clay

The ACA will give it to Clay Boardman.

tckr1983 08/31/10 - 10:37 pm
I doubt they "give" it to

I doubt they "give" it to him... but even if Mr. Boardman ends up purchasing the property ultimately sometime down the road, is that a bad thing should he decide to renovate it? I may just be misreading your post... if so, my apologies.

omnomnom 08/31/10 - 11:17 pm
maybe the sibley could be

maybe the sibley could be turned into one of those "lifestyle centers" countyman drools over. seriously, putting a mini-mall in there could be kinda cool. with like, a trader joe's and an ace hardware (i'd never have to leave the 30904 zipcode again) [it'd make a few ex's happy]

fdn315 09/01/10 - 10:41 am
As long as they do something

As long as they do something with it that doesn't involve it being torn down I'll be happy. It's in a great location and $800,000 seems like a bargin for its location on the canal and rivierwatch parkway with its access to I-20 and west Augusta. It shall not go to waste hopefully...

Little Lamb
Little Lamb 09/01/10 - 10:51 am
I guess the building is

I guess the building is officially off the tax rolls now. It was a functioning business until Fred (What, me worry?) Russell took away their permission to use the canal water to make electricity. Don't you just love how government throws its weight around?

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