"Obviously we're interested in seeing the property redeveloped," Edwards said.
"The key to that is the environmental condition. We have been talking with the [state Department of Environmental Protection]. The report back from them is most of the work has been done and the rest will be done so the property can work into private hands.
"So we're trying to facilitate the property being made useful again."
According to Edwards, DEP has already removed the underground gasoline storage tanks from the privately owned property. But a tank utilized for storing used motor oil is still on site, he said. He was not sure whether contaminated soil had been removed or remediated.
CURA recently had the site appraised, for $250,000 -- a step the agency normally takes before buying property.
"It's a corner property, very visible, in a commercial district," Edwards said of the high valuation.
"At this point we're just trying to make something happen," Edwards said. "If we do need to be involved directly, we would consider doing that. There's been no formal decision on our part, pending the environmental report.
"If we can play a constructive role in getting it redeveloped, we'd have an interest. We don't want to be a property owner; we want to see redevelopment of the property.
"[The use] could vary. At one extreme a public passive use, or a commercial re-use. We don't have any bias one way or the other."
CURA already hosts a dog park in the East End on a site it would like to sell for redevelopment. The Sunoco site "could have an interim use too," Edwards said.
But asked if CURA would be interested in owning a permanent park, he said, "Probably not. We'd probably want to transfer ownership to the city if it were going to be a public space."Reach Jim Balow at ba...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-5102.