Group plans cleanup, prep at medical center site

The Palo Alto Medical Foundation is moving ahead with plans to demolish buildings and perform site cleanup at 301 Industrial Road, months before the City Council is slated to vote on the firm’s proposed medical center on the property.

San Carlos issued a demolition permit June 1, giving the Ferma Corp. permission to begin work Monday on behalf of owners of 301 Industrial LLC, which PAMF officials have confirmed is the holdings company for the property.

A number of buildings, formerly owned by CPI and Eimac, have been vacant since mid-2006, according to Northgate Environmental Management spokesman Alan Leavitt.

Demolition of the buildings should take two to three months, after which soil and groundwater cleanup to remove trace metals, gasoline and volatile organic material could take another year or more, Leavitt said.

“Right now it’s a blighted site, and there have been a number of trespassers and thefts,” said PAMF spokesman Ben Drew.

Sgt. Mark Robbins confirmed that the San Carlos Police Department has been called to the site a number of times, and has even arrested suspects who were there to steal copper tubing and wires.

PAMF proposes building a medical center and 91-bed hospital on the 18-acre site.

While the company’s proposal earned its environmental-impact approvals in April, the project will undergo several more public meetings before votes by the San Carlos Planning Commission and City Council.

“As far as the demolition goes, it means the site is going to be cleaned up,” said Scot Marsters, president of the Laureola Neighborhood Association, who has often criticized PAMF’s process as being insensitive to neighbors. “I don’t see a downside to that.”

bwinegarner@examiner.com

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