Will A Deal Be Struck On Remington Remediation?

Remington Kaolian
Aerial of the August 2010 fire at the old Remington plant. Courtesy Morgan Kaolian.

Lawyers for the city and developer Sal DiNardo have resumed discussions to forge agreement on a demolition and remediation plan for the 28-acre former Remington Arms plant on the East Side that would include six acres for a second city train station.

An ugly fire last August became a flashpoint for health and safety of East Side residents with representatives of the city and DiNardo pointing fingers over responsibility.

In the weeks after the August fire emergency crews took down portions of the former manufacturing plant deemed an immediate health and safety threat, but the majority of the hulking structures remain. The price tag to demolish and clear the site will cost millions depending on a future usage.

A view from inside one of the old Remington buildings.

In the months before the August fire DiNardo’s attorney Chuck Willinger had many conversations with city officials about a plan to demolish and clear the site that included performance standards, in exchange for the city forgiving back taxes, and DiNardo spending $3 million of his own money to clear the site over approximately a two-year period, in addition to $100,000 a year to the city for 10 years, as part of a remediation agreement. Those talks broke down.

Remington sold its Abrasive Products business and the Barnum Avenue site in Bridgeport to RemGrit Corporation in 1986, according to Remington’s corporate history. In recent years the vacated site has been controlled by a limited liability company led by DiNardo. The city went to court to enforce payment of back taxes on the property. DiNardo had the LLC placed into bankruptcy court. Both sides have decided that rather than posture in court to try to work out an agreement.

Mayor Bill Finch wants a portion of the property for a train station. That would take years to make happen, but if the city and DiNardo can reach agreement additional portions of the buildings could come down in an election year. We’ll see.



  1. *** Probably not, city moves too slow on possible developments, no? Good or bad! Taxpayers can look forward to more green projects, more city employee concessions, higher taxes, layoffs & assumed future budget revenue along with an increase in crime. *** Happy New Year? ***

  2. I am not a big fan of Sal DiNardo however something needs to be done with that property and both the firefighters and the residents do not need to be faced with this nightmare.
    The way I see it DiNardo is not going to fork over the back taxes for this complex, it would be a blessing to him if the city took over the complex.
    There is enough blame to go around on this project it goes back at least 2 mayors and maybe 3. The fire chiefs are at fault because they chair the condemnation commission. BTW where the hell have they been all these years?
    Let DiNardo clean this site up in 1 year max, let him spend $3 million over this 1 year period also let him pay the city $200K a year for 10 years plus give the city the acreage for a new railroad station.
    BTW get DiNardo off his ass and get the demolition of Bridgeport Machines completed. Where the hell are the city agencies? They should ride by and see the partial demolition that started months ago and has sat idle for a number of months. Come on do something or in a few years DiNardo will be doing the same thing he is doing at Remington.


    August 31st, 2010. Lennie, please comment:

    Tuesday update: That’s it. I’m done.

    So says developer Sal DiNardo who told OIB Monday afternoon he had divested himself of interest several weeks ago in a company (RemGrit) that controls the former Remington Arms plant on Barnum Avenue where city fire personnel are trying to contain a blaze that began on Saturday.

    DiNardo says RemGrit was placed into bankruptcy court several months ago after he was unable to reach agreement with city officials on a condemnation plan that would have included the city forgiving millions in back taxes he says he inherited when he gained control of the company.

    “The city can take the property,” DiNardo said. “I no longer have an interest in it. They should have let me tear it down.”

    1. Really, after the August fire everyone from the city to DiNardo was running for cover. It’s also a question of finances and liability. The city doesn’t want the property if it’s responsible for a cleanup in the millions. DiNardo’s in the business of making money. He’d like to salvage something out of this deal. He also doesn’t want the EPA on his back. So it’s both in his interests and the city to work something out. Let’s see if that happens.

  4. Here is what I am getting at (in a nutshell):
    You have worked for Sal DiNardo doing his PR work. This was the case until very recently per your blog and may or may not be the case now. You allowed Sal to pass a piece of total disinformation through your blog and you backed it up. Your readers have been under the operative assumption that Sal is no longer involved in Remgrit ownership. Meanwhile, he has been trying to negotiate his legal burdens away. He knew what he was getting into when he took control of Remgrit. He just bet that his political clout would allow him to steer around his exposure to all of its negatives including the taxes he rightfully owes. He has done everything he can to make this property unsafe. He evicted all of the small businesses and artists that were operating fruitfully and then put his lackeys in charge of “security” including Councilman Bob Curwen. They shut down the heat, let the pipes burst, stopped maintaining the property wholly, and put our firemen at direct risk just so that he could turn a profit by letting this property deteriorate until the point where Mayor Moonbeam (his main campaign recipient) would bail him out. This whole thing is a sick joke and you enable his campaign of disinformation yourself.

    1. Really, in 2008 I produced a radio and television campaign for DiNardo focused on promoting city destination points and his transformation of a portion of the old Bridgeport Brass site, a multi-million dollar cleanup, into a new location for United Rentals. I’ve not done work for him since that campaign. Sal can sometimes be his own worst enemy, but the Brass site shows what can be done to transform shitholes into something positive. If the city said hey Sal we’ll take the property and you’ll not be on the hook for anything he’d walk away. He stated in that column, in the days after the fire, that he was done, if they want the property and want to be responsible for it. That’s not the case. The city doesn’t want to be on the hook for it. He also said they should have let him clean up the property. If the city had worked with DiNardo in 2008 most of that public health hazard would be down.

  5. Lennie, Sal didn’t clean up United rental site it is still buried there they found a transformer he buried there and much much more. He did the dog and pony show believe me there are oil spills, pcbs, asbestos buried there. At Bpt Machine site he was stopped by State of CT because bldg was not first remediated he was taking bldg down that was putting asbestos into the air in the surrounding neighborhood. Lennie you know he is nothing but a used-car salesmen with inherited money. Sal would never do anything legit that he could get away with doing corruptly, it’s in his blood he likes to believe he is connected.


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