MERCER – Mercer County is selling a large chunk of land along I-80 for development, hoping the sale will lead to a new industry and more jobs in the region.
The county commissioners approved a sales agreement Thursday to sell property at the Interstate 80-Route 19 interchange in East Lackawannock Township to CRG Acquisition, a real estate company with a national clientele. Commissioner Scott Boyd said the price would be $10,000 an acre for an unspecified amount of property, pending a final approval in the future.
The sales agreement resolution lists the parcel size as 210 acres, “more or less.”
“This is a significant transaction,” Boyd said. “We’re looking forward to a great outcome in the not-too-distant future.”
He said the sale is contingent upon the company, which leases land to developers, finding nothing wrong with the property.
The land was previously used for agriculture and mining gravel.
Commissioner Matt McConnell, board chairman, said the sale, which would be in the $2 million range, should occur later this year.
“I’m very optimistic about it,” McConnell said.
He said if all goes well, construction on an unnamed business development could begin in a year.
McConnell said it was premature to know how many jobs could result from development of the site, but estimated that it could range from 200 and 800.
“Our assumption is they don’t have a tenant,” he said.
McConnell stressed the significance of a company as large as CRG being interested in Mercer County.
“This is not their first rodeo,” he said.
On a smaller scale, the commissioners also approved advertising the sale of Mill Road Bridge in Perry Township. Boyd said one party expressed interest in repurposing the steel, so the county opted to put the structure up for sale.
He said if a buyer tears down the bridge, that will save the county from having to spend money to do it.
State law requires that the county sell the bridge only after a bidding process.
Boyd said the bridge is in disrepair, but the county decided to close the road rather than commit to a new bridge because a PennDOT study indicated that the span’s traffic volume doesn’t justify the cost of replacing it.