Former GM plant sells; two others on market-WEB ONLY

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The City of Anderson recently sold one of three former General Motors plants, and officials say they’re optimistic that they’ll soon find buyers for the remaining two sites, despite the sluggish economy.

“Anderson hit bottom a long time ago,” said Diana Priser, the city’s deputy director of economic development. “We’re on our way back up.”

Hy-Tech Machining Systems LLC purchased the former Plant No. 18, a three-story, 240,795-square-foot industrial complex at 2900 Scatterfield Road, for $425,000. The plant was originally listed at $850,000 in September.

The Anderson-based firm, which employs about 10 people, plans to begin renovations as soon as the weather improves, said Stan Lay, the company’s president. Work should be completed by May.

The company might add up to 50 full-time employees over the next three years, Lay said.

The sale of the site comes four months after Anderson’s redevelopment commission terminated its agreement with Columbus, Ohio-based Value Recovery Group and decided to market the properties through local brokers Tom Willey and Kurt Mathewson of Coldwell Banker Commercial.

Willey said potential buyers continue to look at the remaining sites every week. City officials are also aggressively recruiting firms looking to expand in the Midwest, Priser said.

“The existing sites are actively being shown all the time,” she said. “We don’t expect them to be on the market much longer.”

The two sites include Plant No. 20, which housed auto-parts manufacturer Delphi until it shuttered operations in 2006, and the older Plant No. 16, a former equipment repair site. The 345,000-square-foot Plant 20 is on the market for $2.8 million, while the 168,268-square-foot Plant 16 is priced at $425,000.

The price on both properties has dropped significantly in recent months. Plant 20 was listed for $3.2 million in September, while Plant 16 was priced at $725,000.

Willey said the price reductions came as a result of the sluggish economy and the city’s desire to attract new jobs to the area.

Lay, of Hy-Tech Machining, said the lower price helped motivate him to snap up the former General Motors property.

“We got a real good deal,” he said.

He considered building a new facility, but also liked the size and location of the GM plant. Plus, since it served as a former research and testing facility, there weren’t any contaminants in the ground soil, he said.

“This was probably the best GM building in Anderson,” he said. “I was very fortunate to get my hands on it.”

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