New details have been revealed on the sale of the Damen Silos at 2900 S Damen Avenue in McKinley Park. Located on the northeast corner with W 29th Street along the Chicago River just north of the Stevenson Expressway, the long abandoned structures were put on sale earlier this year by the state in order to cut spending. The process which consisted of accepting various bids from local companies seems to have concluded with a winner being selected.
Opened in 1906, they were built by the Chicago-based Topeka & Santa Fe Railroad which was founded in 1859 and grew to be one of the nation’s largest before merging with its competitor to form Burlington Northern & Santa Fe Railway, or BNSF. The silos themselves top out at around 15-stories tall and utilized a massive system of gain elevators to process 400,000 bushels of grain. They were eventually bought by the state 1928 and closed in 1977 due to a large explosion and have since become an urban playground for taggers.
Hoping to save taxpayers $325,000 a year, the potential $6.5 million sale of the 23-acre site was announced today by the governor to Michael Tadin Jr. who operates an asphalt plant nearby and various other buildings. Being sold as-is, if the sale clears the new owners will need to perform a long remediation process that could take over a year before they demolish them as planned. Replacing them will be a new headquarter for all of his companies involving construction and waste removal, including space for their over 100-truck fleet.
Tadin also hopes to move towards electric vehicles which the new facility would cater to, however the new owners have been involved in various pollution controversies with its nearby plant according to the Sun Times. The state will now need to negotiate the official sales document prior to moving forward but hope to finalize the transaction by the end of the year, from then the company will need to go through various approvals before being able to start their construction.