New owner found for vacant Niagara mill

Posted on Feb 14, 2011 :: Insight on Business, Web Exclusive.
Posted by of Insight Publications

NIAGARA Development LLC, a national development company, has purchased the complete property and former plant assets of the NewPage Mill in Niagara.

NIAGARA Development plans to work with various individual users who want to move into the former mill site, which was closed by New Page in 2008. When the mill was closed, hundreds in this Marinette County community and neighboring areas were left without work. New North, Inc. has completed specific market development studies focused on alternative energy based on woody biomass.

“Our first step is to finish the move of our corporate development offices onto the Niagara Site premises in order to create a base of operation here in Niagara, Wisconsin,” says Eric J. Spirtas, president of NIAGARA Development LLC.  “Over the last 12 months as our firm has considered this valuable acquisition, we have considered all that the site has to offer.  We see the centralized location, regional encouragement and natural infrastructure presence as a clear redevelopment prospect. This move will serve to consolidate corporate operations and intensify the focus on repositioning the mill site to a number of market opportunities.”

Niagara Development LLC is led by its owners: Yong Liu, owner of The Faith Group Company, an international leading trader / recycler of (“PET – polyethylene terephthalate”), and industrial developer Eric J. Spirtas, owner of EJ Spirtas Group LLC, who specializes in redeveloping, repurposing, and remanufacturing sites. 

The combined effort of these two owners and companies allows concentrated revitalization at the Niagara site, Spirtas says. “This site has tremendous potential to attract manufacturing, investment and power generation-technologies.  Opportunities in the pipeline are oriented to take advantage of the existing site characteristics, on-site utilities, and local resources, including a strong regional workforce,” he says.

Power generation has already attracted the interest of new business investment.  In March 2009, NewPage sold its hydroelectric facility to Northbrook Wisconsin, LLC.  The site could well attract other, “green” energy interests within the arena of biofuels by virtue of a combination of power-related infrastructure and access to substantial woody biomass feedstock.