PHILADELPHIA (AP) — A redevelopment firm's $240 million bid won an auction to acquire the bankrupt Philadelphia Energy Solutions refinery site and has an “aggressive” timeline to clean up and redevelop, city officials said.
Hilco Redevelopment Partners agreed to pay the high price to acquire the 1,300-acre refinery that was the site of an explosive fire in June and plans to move quickly to redevelop it into a mixed-use industrial facility, Brian Abernathy, the city’s managing director, said Wednesday.
“I think their timeline is aggressive, I’ll put it that way,” Abernathy told the Philadelphia Inquirer. “They want to be in the ground quickly.”
Abernathy headed a four-person city government delegation that attended the auction on Friday and he said the firm came prepared for negotiations but did not submit a formal plan for the site.
“They’ll probably still keep the tank farm and some of the energy logistics that are on-site, but they don’t intend to operate the refinery,” Abernathy added.
Philadelphia Energy Solutions shut down following a June 21 fire and explosion and declared bankruptcy shortly after. The refinery was the largest oil-processing facility on the East Coast and had been in operation for 150 years.
The refinery's plans require the approval of U.S. Bankruptcy Court Judge Kevin Gross, who has scheduled a confirmation hearing for Feb. 6. The creditors can vote or file any objections to the plan until Feb. 3.