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Plans in the works to clean former factory site in Macomb

Former Haeger.jpg
Rich Egger
The former site of Macomb's Haeger Pottery plant is now strewn with rubble.

Mayor Mike Inman said he spoke with members of the Haeger family this week, and they assured him they plan to clear the site along West Calhoun Street where their pottery factory once stood.

But Inman cautioned the cleanup might take some time – perhaps up to a year – while testing is done to determine whether asbestos, underground fuel tanks, or any other hazards are present.

“It’s all what might be there, and we just want to make sure that whoever they pass the property onto will (know) that they’re not inheriting some issues that they need to remediate,” he said.

“The general public might find the pace (of the cleanup) is not quick enough, but we thought that to have that space with a different look 12 months from now is a step in the right direction.”

Inman said the site could be turned into a green space, though no definite plan is in place.

“We’re grateful for the Haeger family to still be in the community, trying to make the best use that they can of what was a landmark and a community employer for many decades,” the mayor said.

Haeger Pottery opened in 1871 in East Dundee, Illinois, and Haeger bought the Buckeye Pottery facility in Macomb in 1939.

The business closed the Macomb facility in 2004, and the building was torn down within the past couple years.

For now, the building’s cement floor remains along with piles of rubble.

Haeger continued operations in East Dundee until it went out of business in 2016.

Tri States Public Radio produced this story.  TSPR relies on financial support from our readers and listeners in order to provide coverage of the issues that matter to west central Illinois, southeast Iowa, and northeast Missouri. As someone who values the content created by TSPR's news department please consider making a financial contribution.

Rich is TSPR's News Director.