ELKHART — Costs to prepare the former Elkhart Foundry site for construction of the proposed $29 million luxury apartment development are going up.
The city originally asked for $550,000 to prepare the site for construction, but discovered large chunks of the former building’s original foundation were left in the ground after the foundry complex was torn down in 2010.
The city is now being asked to appropriate “not more than $1 million” to get the site ready for construction, which is part of the development agreement between the city and the project’s developer Flaherty & Collins Properties. Crystal Welsh, the city’s director of development services, said that it was a general requirement for foundations and other pieces of a building to be removed from the ground during the demolition process, so the city was surprised to learn chunks of the foundation were still buried in the ground.
“For some reason the city didn’t remove those pieces when it tore down the building,” she said. “It wasn’t something we expected.”
Welsh said that the city had similar issues when it was preparing the site for the Indiana University South Bend building in downtown Elkhart. She said the city is also pursuing the former owners of the foundry to reimburse costs associated with cleaning up the site, but that no further details could be released at this point.