Engineers conclude grant will cover more work than what town had estimated
By Cindy Hoffman Staff Writer
(Nov. 16, 2023) The Berlin Town Council unanimously approved a request for proposals drawn up by its engineering consultants for the partial demolition of the Tyson’s processing plant at Heron Park on Old Ocean City Road.
Andrew Welsch, the senior structural engineer for Salisbury engineering firm Davis, Bowen & Friedel told the council and Mayor Zack Tyndall on Monday that the building has been split up into eight sections.
He believes there is enough money from the $500,000 demolition grant provided by the Department of Housing and Urban Development to remove sections one, two and three, which are in the worst shape.
But if money does not cover all three sections, Welch proposed doing a partial demo of section three.
Sections four through eight are in fair to robust condition, Welsch said.
If there are additional funds, Welsh recommended they be used to clean up debris in sections four through eight, including suspended ceilings, insulation and loose paint. Work will include the closing up of existing openings in the buildings.
It’s expected that demolition could be complete by April 2024.
The Town of Berlin purchased the Tyson’s plant and its land, now called Heron Park, for $2.5 million. The town owes $2.3 million on the property.
Opteon Appraisal this summer conducted an updated appraisal of parcel 57, which is just the land where the plant stands.
In 2022, the property was appraised at $800,000 as residential zoning.
The updated appraisal assessed the property at $1.2 million as B2 business zoning, based on the assumption that demolition of the building would be complete.
The RFP proposes only partial demolition of the building due to a lack of funds to demolish the entire structure.
The hope is that a developer will be interested in finding a use for the remaining structure.